English Dictionary

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Definitions of game

game1 (ɡeɪm Pronunciation for game1



  1. an amusement or pastime; diversion
  2. a contest with rules, the result being determined by skill, strength, or chance
  3. a single period of play in such a contest, sport, etc
  4. the score needed to win a contest
  5. a single contest in a series; match
  6. (plural; often capital) an event consisting of various sporting contests, esp in athletics   ⇒ Olympic Games, Highland Games
  7. equipment needed for playing certain games
  8. short for computer game
  9. style or ability in playing a game   ⇒ he is a keen player but his game is not good
  10. a scheme, proceeding, etc, practised like a game   ⇒ the game of politics
  11. an activity undertaken in a spirit of levity; joke   ⇒ marriage is just a game to him
    1. wild animals, including birds and fish, hunted for sport, food, or profit
    2. (as modifier)   ⇒ game laws
  12. the flesh of such animals, used as food: generally taken not to include fish
  13. an object of pursuit; quarry; prey (esp in the phrase fair game)
  14. (informal) work or occupation
  15. (informal) a trick, strategy, or device   ⇒ I can see through your little game
  16. (obsolete) pluck or courage; bravery
  17. (slang, mainly British) prostitution (esp in the phrase on the game)
  18. See give the game away

  19. See make game of

  20. See off one's game

  21. See on one's game

  22. See play the game

  23. See the game is up


  1. (informal) full of fighting spirit; plucky; brave
  2. See game as Ned Kelly

  3. (usually followed by for) (informal) prepared or ready; willing   ⇒ I'm game for a try


  1. (intransitive) to play games of chance for money, stakes, etc; gamble

Derived Forms

ˈgameˌlike adjective

Word Origin

Old English gamen; related to Old Norse gaman, Old High German gaman amusement

Quotations including 'game'

  • "Play for more than you can afford to lose, and you will learn the game" [Winston Churchill]
  • "It should be noted that children at play are not playing about; their games should be seen as their most serious-minded activity" [Montaigne
  • "Die: the singular of `dice'. We seldom hear the word, because there is a prohibitory proverb, `Never say die.'" [Ambrose Bierce
  • "I am sorry I have not learned to play at cards. It is very useful in life; it generates kindness and consolidates society" [Dr. Johnson]
  • "It's just a game - baseball - an amusement, a marginal thing, not an art, not a consequential metaphor for life, not a public trust" [Richard Ford
  • "Life is a game in which the rules are constantly changing; nothing spoils a game more than those who take it seriously" [Quentin Crisp

game2 (ɡeɪm Pronunciation for game2



  1. a less common word for lame1   ⇒ game leg

Word Origin

C18: probably from Irish cam crooked

Translations for 'game'

  • British English: gamePronunciation for game A game is something you play that has rules, for example football.ɡeɪm NOUNwith rules
  • Arabic: لُعْبَةPronunciation for لُعْبَة
  • Brazilian Portuguese: jogoPronunciation for jogo
  • Chinese: 游戏Pronunciation for 游戏
  • Croatian: igraPronunciation for igra
  • Czech: hraPronunciation for hra
  • Danish: spilPronunciation for spil
  • Dutch: spelPronunciation for spel
  • European Spanish: juegoPronunciation for juegoestratagemas
  • Finnish: peliPronunciation for peli
  • French: jeuPronunciation for jeuenfants
  • German: SpielPronunciation for Spiel
  • Greek: παιχνίδιPronunciation for παιχνίδι
  • Italian: giocoPronunciation for gioco
  • Japanese: ゲームPronunciation for ゲーム
  • Korean: 게임Pronunciation for 게임
  • Norwegian: spillPronunciation for spill
  • Polish: graPronunciation for grazabawa
  • Portuguese: jogoPronunciation for jogo
  • Romanian: joc jocuri
  • Russian: играPronunciation for игра
  • Spanish: juegoPronunciation for juegoejercicio recreativo
  • Swedish: spelPronunciation for spel
  • Thai: เกมส์Pronunciation for เกมส์
  • Turkish: oyunPronunciation for oyun
  • Ukrainian: гра
  • Vietnamese: trò chơiPronunciation for trò chơi
  • British English: gameɡeɪm Children play a game when they pretend to be other people.The children played a game of pirates. NOUNimaginative
  • Arabic: لُعْبَة
  • Brazilian Portuguese: jogo
  • Chinese: 游戏
  • Croatian: igra
  • Czech: hradětská
  • Danish: leg
  • Dutch: spel
  • European Spanish: juego
  • Finnish: leikki
  • French: jeuenfants
  • German: Spielkarte
  • Greek: παιχνίδι
  • Italian: gioco
  • Japanese: 遊び
  • Korean: 게임
  • Norwegian: lek
  • Polish: zabawa
  • Portuguese: jogo
  • Romanian: joc jocuri
  • Russian: игра
  • Spanish: juego
  • Swedish: lek
  • Thai: เกม
  • Turkish: oyun
  • Ukrainian: гра
  • Vietnamese: trò chơi

Example Sentences Including 'game'

What struck me most was that unlike Marianne's affair, ours had essentially been a game.
Hugo Wilcken THE EXECUTION (2002)
He was playing Scrabble... no, not Scrabble, it must be that funny game , Paronomania.
Anthony Masters CASCADES - THE DAY OF THE DEAD (2001)
We'd interrupted a game of solitaire he'd been playing at a desk on the far side of the room.
Hugo Wilcken THE EXECUTION (2002)


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