Word forms: touches
If you touch something, you put your hand onto it in order to feel it or to make contact with it. [V n] ⇒ Her tiny hands gently touched my face. [V n] ⇒ Don't touch that dial. [V n] ⇒ She reached down, touching her toes with opposite hands. [V-ing] ⇒ The virus is not passed on through touching or shaking hands.
Touch is also a noun. ⇒ Sometimes even a light touch on the face is enough to trigger off this pain. 2. ergative reciprocal verb & verb
If two things are touching, or if one thing touches another, or if you touch two things, their surfaces come into contact with each other. [V] ⇒ Their knees were touching. [V n + with] ⇒ A cyclist crashed when he touched wheels with another rider. [V n] ⇒ If my arm touches the wall, it has to be washed again. [V n] ⇒ In some countries people stand close enough to touch elbows. [V n + with] ⇒ He touched the cow's side with his stick.
3. uncountable noun Your sense of touch is your ability to tell what something is like when you feel it with your hands. ⇒ The evidence suggests that our sense of touch is programmed to diminish with age. ⇒ ...boys and girls who are blind and who want to be able to read and write by touch. 4. verb To touch something means to strike it, usually quite gently. [V n] ⇒ He scored the first time he touched the ball. [V n] ⇒ As the aeroplane went down the runway, the wing touched a pile of rubble. 5. verb [usu passive] If something has not been touched, nobody has dealt with it or taken care of it. [be V-ed] ⇒ When John began to restore the house in the 1960s, nothing had been touched for 40 years. 6. verb If you say that you did not touch someone or something, you are emphasizing that you did not attack, harm or destroy them, especially when you have been accused of doing so. [emphasis] [V n] ⇒ Pearce remained adamant, saying 'I didn't touch him'. [V n] ⇒ I was in the garden. I never touched the sandwiches. 7. verb [no passive] You say that you never touch something or that you have not touched something for a long time to emphasize that you never use it, or you have not used it for a long time. [emphasis] [V n] ⇒ He doesn't drink much and doesn't touch drugs. [V n] ⇒ His diet is vegetarian, and he hasn't touched meat for six years. [V n] ⇒ Jones hasn't touched a trumpet in 10 years. 8. verb If you touch on a particular subject or problem, you mention it or write briefly about it. [V + on/upon] ⇒ The film touches on these issues, but only superficially. [V on/upon n] ⇒ She writes about women's idealisation of men, touching briefly on the topic of women's fantasy life. 9. verb
If something touches you, it affects you in some way for a short time. [V n] ⇒ ...a guilt that in some sense touches everyone. [V n] ⇒ Nor had the benefits of the war years touched all sectors of the population.
10. verb If something that someone says or does touches you, it affects you emotionally, often because you see that they are suffering a lot or that they are being very kind. [V n to-inf] ⇒ It has touched me deeply to see how these people live. [V n] ⇒ Her enthusiasm touched me. touched
graded adjective & adjective [v-link ADJ] ⇒ I was touched to find that he regards me as engaging. ⇒ He was touched that we came. 11. verb [usu passive]
If something is touched with a particular quality, it has a certain amount of that quality. [written] [be V-ed + with] ⇒ His crinkly hair was touched with grey. [be V-ed + with] ⇒ The boy was touched with genius.
12. verb [no cont] [no passive] If you say about someone that nobody can touch him or her for a particular thing, you mean that he or she is much better at it than anyone else. [V n + for] ⇒ No one can touch these girls for professionalism. [Also V n] 13. verb [no passive] To touch a particular level, amount, or score, especially a high one, means to reach it. [mainly British] [V n] ⇒ By the third lap Kinkead had touched 289 m.p.h. [V n] ⇒ The winds had touched storm-force the day before. 14. verb
If you touch someone for money, you ask them to give it to you. [informal] [V n for n] ⇒ Now is the time to touch him for a loan.
15. countable noun A touch is a detail which is added to something to improve it. ⇒ They called the event 'a tribute to heroes', which was a nice touch. ⇒ Small touches to a room such as flowers can be what gives a house its vitality. 16. singular noun
If someone has a particular kind of touch, they have a particular way of doing something. ⇒ The dishes he produces all have a personal touch. ⇒ The striker was unable to find his scoring touch.
A touch of something is a very small amount of it. [+ of] ⇒ She thought she just had a touch of flu. ⇒ At university he wrote a bit, did a touch of acting, and indulged in internal college politics.
COBUILD Advanced English Dictionary. Copyright © Harper Collins Publishers