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Related to ward: ward off
call the burn ward
slang Said humorously when someone has been insulted, especially in a particularly cutting or witty way. ("Burn" is a slang word for an insult.) A: "Yeah, I'm sure you did overhear us, Dumbo." B: "Oh! Call the burn ward!" C: "Ha ha, like I don't know my ears stick out. Please." Ooh, good one! Somebody call the burn ward!
gravitate to(ward) (someone or something)
To tend to move toward or show interest in some person, place, or thing, as if being pulled by a magnetic force. Teenagers always seem to gravitate to rebellious behavior—it's not something that's unique to your son. I just gravitate toward those kinds of artsy movies, I can't help it. The kids always seem to gravitate to Aunt Joan whenever the whole family gets together.
See also: gravitate
make (one's) way to(ward) (something or some place)
To navigate or find one's way to or toward something or some location. Passengers, please make your way toward the exit in an orderly fashion. I'm making my way to New York City by car.
slang A nickname for Montgomery Ward & Company, commonly called "Montgomery Ward's," a mail order retailer and department store chain. Sometimes capitalized. My grandfather had worked in monkey wards all his life until the company went bankrupt in 1997. I'll never forget the pile of massive catalogs my aunt kept in the corner of her living room. She said they were from Monkey Wards, which always made me laugh.
1. To apply physical force or pressure on someone or something, typically with one's fingers. Next, press on the big red button—that should reset it. What about here? Does it hurt when I press on it? This part is out of place, which is making this piece press on the fan.
2. To push or lean against someone or something. It's stuck—something is pressing on the door! It was awful having so many people press on me in the crowded train.
3. To cause something to stick onto some surface by applying pressure down on it. In this usage, a noun or pronoun can be used between "press" and "on." He pressed the temporary tattoo on his arm. Make sure you press on the sticker for at least fifteen seconds, or it won't stay in place.
4. To continue or try to do something with determination, especially when facing hardships or setbacks. It was discouraging to learn that our budget had been cut, but we pressed on in the hopes of recovering our investment costs. We have to press on. We've come too far to turn back now!
5. To challenge someone insistently on some point or argument. In this usage, a noun or pronoun is used between "press" and "on." The detective pressed the suspect on his alibi. The prosecutor kept pressing the witness on her statement.
6. To insist that someone accept something, especially a gift. In this usage, a noun or pronoun is used between "press" and "on." My mother always presses all sorts of unnecessary gifts on the kids whenever we come to visit.
To continue or try to do something with determination, especially when facing hardships or setbacks. It was discouraging to learn that our budget had been cut, but we pressed onward in the hopes of recovering our investment costs. We have to press onward. We've come too far to turn back now!
To push back or defend against someone or something that is advancing. A noun or pronoun can be used between "ward" and "off." How will we ward off all these attackers? If you feel like you're getting a cold, these vitamin C tablets should help you to ward it off. These talismans were thought to ward off evil spirits.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
press on something
to push or depress something, such as a button, catch, snap, etc. Press on this button if you require room service. Don't press on this because it rings a loud bell.
to continue; to continue to try. Don't give up! Press onward! I have lots to do. I must press on.
press something (up)on someone
to urge or force something on someone; to try to get someone to accept something. (Upon is formal and less commonly used than on.) He always presses second helpings upon his guests. She pressed a gift on us that we could not refuse.
press (up)on someone or something
to put pressure on someone or something. (Upon is formal and less commonly used than on.) The crowd pressed upon the child, squeezing out all his breath. The load presses on your car's springs very heavily.
ward someone or something off
to hold someone or something off; to fight someone or something off. The army was able to ward the attackers off repeatedly. We couldn't ward off the attackers any longer.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
1. Turn aside, parry, as in He tried to ward off her blows. [Second half of 1500s]
2. Try to prevent, avert, as in She took vitamin C to ward off a cold. [Mid-1700s]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
1. To apply direct pressure to something: I pressed on the edge of the table, and it tipped over.
2. To continue doing something with determination and despite setbacks: Despite their exhaustion, the climbers pressed on toward the summit.
1. To try to prevent; avert: You should take vitamins to ward off infections.
2. To turn something aside; repel: The champion boxer warded off the opponent's blows. The flies were annoying me, but I warded them off.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Phrasal Verbs. Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
n. Montgomery Wards, a department store chain. (The first mail- order house, it operated through the entire twentieth century. It now operates online.) I get that kind of stuff at monkey wards.
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.