cry1 W2S2 [kraı] v past tense and past participle cried present participle crying third person singular cries
1¦(produce tears)¦
2¦(say loudly)¦
3 cry over spilt milk
4 for crying out loud
5 cry foul
7 cry wolf
8 cry into your beer
Phrasal verbs
 cry off
 cry out
[Date: 1200-1300; : Old French; Origin: crier, from Latin quiritare 'to shout for help (from a citizen), scream', from Quiris 'Roman citizen']
to produce tears from your eyes, usually because you are unhappy or hurt
Don't cry, Laura. It'll be OK.
Upstairs, a baby began to cry.
Jamie looked like he'd been crying.
I just couldn't stop crying.
That film always makes me cry .
cry over/about
I am too old to be crying over some young guy.
cry with/in
She felt like crying with frustration.
cry for
She could hear him crying for his mother.
cry your eyes/heart out
(=be extremely sad and cry a lot)
Oliver, alone, began to cry bitterly (=cry a lot) .
cry yourself to sleep
(=cry until you fall asleep)
2.) ¦(SAY LOUDLY)¦ [T]
[i]written to shout or say something loudly
= ↑cry out
'Stop!' she cried.
It was painful, and made me cry aloud .
cry to
'Goodbye then!' he cried to her.
cry for
I could hear voices crying for help.
3.) cry over spilt milk
to waste time feeling sorry about an earlier mistake or problem that cannot be changed
It's no use crying over spilt milk .
4.) for crying out loud
spoken used when you feel annoyed or impatient with someone
For crying out loud, stop nagging!
5.) cry foul
to protest because you think something is wrong or not fair
When the ads appeared, it was the Democrats' turn to cry foul.
if animals or birds cry, they make a loud sound
I could hear gulls crying and the soft whisper of the sea.
7.) cry wolf
to ask for help when you do not need it, so that people do not believe you when you really need help
8.) cry into your beer [i]informal
to feel too much pity for yourself, especially because you think you have been treated unfairly
not know whether to laugh or cry atlaugh1 (3), cry for the moon atmoon1 (4), a shoulder to cry on atshoulder1 (5)
cry off phr v
to say that you cannot do something that you have already promised to do
Leah and I were going to go to Morocco together, but at the last moment she cried off.
cry out phr v
1.) to make a loud sound of fear, shock, pain etc
cry out in/with
Even the smallest movement made him cry out in pain.
John tightened his grip until she cried out.
2.) to shout or say something loudly
'Why are you doing this?' she cried out suddenly.
cry out for
I felt too terrified to even cry out for help.
3.) be crying out for sth informal
to need something urgently
The kitchen is crying out for a coat of paint.
My parents had divorced and I was crying out for love.
WORD FOCUS: words meaning cry
be in tears to be crying
burst into tears to suddenly start crying
break down (in tears) to suddenly cry a lot, after trying not to cry
sob to cry noisily, with sudden noisy breaths
weep (especially written) to cry a lot for a long time
bawl if a baby bawls, it cries very loudly
have tears in your eyes to be about to cry
your eyes water you start to cry, especially because you have been cutting up onions or there is a lot of smoke
cry 2
cry2 W3 n plural cries
1¦(sound expressing emotion)¦
4 cry for help
a loud sound expressing a strong emotion such as pain, fear, or pleasure
a baby's cry
cry of pain/alarm/delight etc
Alice leapt to one side with a cry of alarm.
let out/give a cry
The stone hit him on the forehead and he gave a sharp cry.
2.) ¦(SHOUT)¦
a shouted word or phrase
cry of
At last, there was a cry of 'Silence!', and everyone looked towards the door.
cry for
Fortunately, a passerby heard his cries for help .
3.) ¦(TEARS)¦ [singular]
especially BrE a period of time during which tears come out of your eyes, usually because you are unhappy
It's good to have a cry sometimes.
I felt much better after I'd had a good cry (=cried for a long time) .
4.) cry for help
something someone says or does that shows that they are very unhappy and need help
I think taking the pills was a cry for help.
5.) ¦(PHRASE)¦
a phrase that is used to unite people in support of a particular action or idea
= ↑slogan
'Land and Liberty' was the rallying cry of revolutionary Mexico.
a sound made by a particular animal
the cries of seagulls overhead
be a far cry from sth atfar2 (5), in full cry atfull1 (22), ↑hue and cry

Dictionary of contemporary English. 2013.

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