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adjective \ˈlȯŋ\

Simple Definition of long

  • : extending a great distance from one end to the other end : not short

  • : extending a specified distance : having a specified length

  • : lasting or continuing for a great amount of time

Full Definition of long

lon·ger play \ˈlȯŋ-gər also -ər\ lon·gest play \ˈlȯŋ-gəst also -əst\

  1. 1 a :  extending for a considerable distance b :  having greater length than usual <a long corridor> c :  having greater height than usual :  tall d :  having a greater length than breadth :  elongated e :  having a greater length than desirable or necessary <the column is one line too long> f :  full-length <long pants>

  2. 2 a :  having a specified length <six feet long> b :  forming the chief linear dimension <the long side of the room>

  3. 3 a :  extending over a considerable time <a long friendship> b :  having a specified duration <two hours long> c :  prolonged beyond the usual time <a long look> d :  lasting too long :  tedious <a long explanation>

  4. 4 a :  containing many items in a series <a long list> b :  having a specified number of units <300 pages long> c :  consisting of a greater number or amount than usual :  large

  5. 5 a of a speech sound :  having a relatively long duration b :  being the member of a pair of similarly spelled vowel or vowel-containing sounds that is descended from a vowel long in duration <long a in fate> <long i in sign> c of a syllable in prosody (1) :  of relatively extended duration (2) :  bearing a stress or accent

  6. 6 :  having the capacity to reach, extend, or travel a considerable distance <a long left jab> <tried to hit the long ball>

  7. 7 :  larger or longer than the standard <a long count by the referee>

  8. 8 a :  extending far into the future <the thoughts of youth are long, long thoughts — H. W. Longfellow> b :  extending beyond what is known <a long guess> c :  payable after a considerable period <a long note>

  9. 9 :  possessing a high degree or a great deal of something specified :  strong <long on common sense>

  10. 10 a :  of an unusual degree of difference between the amounts wagered on each side <long odds> b :  of or relating to the larger amount wagered <take the long end of the bet>

  11. 11 :  subject to great odds

  12. 12 :  owning or accumulating securities or goods especially in anticipation of an advance in prices <they are now long on wheat> <take a long position in steel>

long·ness play \ˈlȯŋ-nəs\ noun
long in the tooth
  1. :  past one's best days :  old

not long for
  1. :  having little time left to do or enjoy something

Examples of long

  1. The bridge is the longest in the world.

  2. We drove a long distance.

  3. the long side of the building

  4. The whale was 50 feet long.

  5. How long was the race? The race was five miles long.

  6. They've had a long and happy marriage.

  7. She finds it hard to sit still for long periods of time.

  8. The company has a long tradition of serving its customers well.

  9. A day is 24 hours long.

  10. The team has had a long streak of wins.

Origin of long

Middle English long, lang, from Old English; akin to Old High German lang long, Latin longus

First Known Use: before 12th century

Rhymes with long




Simple Definition of long

  • : for or during a long time : for many years, days, hours, etc.

  • : for a specified period of time

  • : at a time far before or after a specified moment or event

Full Definition of long

  1. 1 :  for or during a long time <long a popular hangout>

  2. 2 :  at or to a long distance :  far <long-traveled>

  3. 3 :  for the duration of a specified period <month-long> <all summer long>

  4. 4 :  at a point of time far before or after a specified moment or event <was excited long before the big day>

  5. 5 :  after or beyond a specified or implied time <didn't stay longer than midnight>

  6. 6 :  for a considerable distance <threw the ball long>

  7. 7 :  in or into a long position (as on a market)

Examples of long

  1. The extra food she brought did not last long.

  2. They'll have to wait a bit longer.

  3. The mall has long been a popular hangout for teenagers.

  4. They have long been devoted friends.

  5. It's been so long since we've seen each other.

  6. It's been much too long since we've seen each other.

  7. That meeting was way too long.

  8. We had to leave long before we were ready to go.

  9. We talked all night long.

  10. events that occurred long before the discovery of America

Before 12th Century

First Known Use of long

before 12th century




Definition of long

  1. 1 :  a long period of time

  2. 2 :  a long syllable

  3. 3 :  one taking a long position especially in a security or commodity market

  4. 4 a plural :  long trousers b :  a size in clothing for tall men

the long and short or the long and the short
  1. :  gist

Examples of long

  1. <they should be here before long>

Before 12th Century

First Known Use of long

before 12th century




Definition of long

longedlong·ing play \ˈlȯŋ-iŋ\

  1. intransitive verb
  2. :  to feel a strong desire or craving especially for something not likely to be attained <they long for peace> <longing to return home>

long·er play \ˈlȯŋ-ər\ noun

Origin of long

Middle English, from Old English langian; akin to Old High German langēn to long, Old English lang long

First Known Use: before 12th century

Synonym Discussion of long

long, yearn, hanker, pine, hunger, thirst mean to have a strong desire for something. long implies a wishing with one's whole heart and often a striving to attain <longed for some rest>. yearn suggests an eager, restless, or painful longing <yearned for a stage career>. hanker suggests the uneasy promptings of unsatisfied appetite or desire <always hankering for money>. pine implies a languishing or a fruitless longing for what is impossible <pined for a lost love>. hunger and thirst imply an insistent or impatient craving or a compelling need <hungered for a business of his own> <thirsted for power>.




Definition of long


  1. intransitive verb
  2. :  to be suitable or fitting

Origin of long

Middle English, from along (on) because (of)

First Known Use: 13th century




Definition of long


biographical name \ˈlȯŋ\

Definition of Long

  1. Crawford Williamson 1815–1878 Am. surgeon


biographical name

Definition of Long

  1. Hu*ey play \ˈhyü-ē\ Pierce 1893–1935 Am. polit.


biographical name

Definition of Long

  1. Stephen Harriman 1784–1864 Am. army officer & explorer

Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up long? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


February 7, 2016

a slight offense

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