Definition of lose
1a : to bring to destruction —used chiefly in passive construction <the ship was lost on the reef>b : damn <if he shall gain the whole world and lose his own soul — Matthew 16:26 (AV)>
2 : to miss from one's possession or from a customary or supposed place <lost his glove>
3 : to suffer deprivation of : part with especially in an unforeseen or accidental manner <lost his leg in an auto accident>
4a : to suffer loss through the death or removal of or final separation from (a person) <lost a son in the war>b : to fail to keep control of orallegiance (see allegiance 2) of <lose votes> <lost his temper>
5a : to fail to use : let slip by : waste <no time to lose>b (1) : to fail to win, gain, or obtain <lose a prize> <lose a contest> (2) : to undergo defeat in <lost every battle>c : to fail to catch with the senses or the mind <lost what she said>
6 : to cause the loss of
7 : to fail to keep, sustain, or maintain <lost my balance>
8a : to cause to miss one's way or bearings <lost himself in the maze of streets>b : to make (oneself) withdrawn from immediate reality <lost herself in daydreaming>
losableplay \ˈlü-zə-bəl\ adjective
lose one's heart
Examples of lose in a sentence
She's always losing her gloves.
Hold my hand: I don't want to lose you.
We lost the game by a score of 4–2.
He lost his title in the rematch.
The team lost three games but won the next four.
The team lost in the finals.
an athlete known for losing with grace
He hates to lose when money is involved.
How could she play that well and still lose?
The country lost its independence 50 years ago.
Origin and Etymology of lose
Middle English, from Old English losian to perish, lose, from los destruction; akin to Old English lēosan to lose; akin to Old Norse losa to loosen, Latin luere to atone for, Greek lyein to loosen, dissolve, destroy
First Known Use: before 12th century
LOSE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of lose for English Language Learners
: to be unable to find (something or someone)
: to fail to win (a game, contest, etc.)
: to fail to keep or hold (something wanted or valued)
LOSE Defined for Kids
Definition of lose for Students
1 : to be unable to find or have at hand <I lost my keys.>
2 : to become deprived of <She lost her job.>
3 : to become deprived of by death <She lost her grandfather.>
4 : to fail to use : waste <There's no time to lose.>
5 : to fail to win <They lost the game.>
6 : to fail to keep <She lost her balance.> <He lost control.>
Headscratcher for lose
It's easy to mix up lose and loose. Lose means to not have something for some reason and only has one “o,” but rhymes with “snooze.” Loose means to make less tight and rhymes with “moose.” So you might lose weight, but you couldn't really loose weight.
Medical Definition of lose
1: to become deprived of or lacking in <lose consciousness> <lost her sense of smell>; also : to part with in an unforeseen or accidental manner <lose a leg in an auto crash>
2a: to suffer deprivation through the death or removal of or final separation from (a person) <lost a son in the war>b: to fail to keep (a patient) from dying <have lost many fewer pneumonia cases since penicillin came into use>
3: to fail to keep, sustain, or maintain <lose one's balance>
4: to free oneself from : get rid of <dieting to lose weight>
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up lose? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).