last

last
[[t]lɑ͟ːst, læ̱st[/t]]
lasts, lasting, lasted
1) DET You use last in expressions such as last Friday, last night, and last year to refer, for example, to the most recent Friday, night, or year.

I got married last July...

He never made it home at all last night...

Last month a shopkeeper's nephew was shot dead...

It is not surprising they did so badly in last year's elections.

2) ADJ: det ADJ The last event, person, thing, or period of time is the most recent one.

Much has changed since my last visit...

At the last count inflation was 10.9 per cent...

I split up with my last boyfriend three years ago...

The last few weeks have been hectic.

PRON
Last is also a pronoun.

The next tide, it was announced, would be even higher than the last.

3) ADV: ADV with v If something last happened on a particular occasion, that is the most recent occasion on which it happened.

When were you there last?...

The house is a little more dilapidated than when I last saw it...

Hunting on the trust's 625,000 acres was last debated two years ago.

4) ORD The last thing, person, event, or period of time is the one that happens or comes after all the others of the same kind.

This is his last chance as prime minister.

...the last three pages of the chapter...

She said it was the very last house on the road...

They didn't come last in their league.

Ant:
PRON
Last is also a pronoun.

It wasn't the first time that this particular difference had divided them and it wouldn't be the last... The trickiest bits are the last on the list.

5) ADV: ADV after v If you do something last, you do it after everyone else does, or after you do everything else.

I testified last...

I was always picked last for the football team at school...

The foreground, nearest the viewer, is painted last.

6) PRON: PRON to-inf If you are the last to do or know something, everyone else does or knows it before you.

She was the last to go to bed...

Riccardo and I are always the last to know what's going on.

7) ADJ: det ADJ Last is used to refer to the only thing, person, or part of something that remains.

Jed nodded, finishing off the last piece of pizza.

...the freeing of the last hostage.

N-SING: the N of n
Last is also a noun.

He finished off the last of the wine... The last of the ten inmates gave themselves up after twenty eight hours on the roof of the prison.

8) ADJ: det ADJ You use last before numbers to refer to a position that someone has reached in a competition after other competitors have been knocked out.

Sampras reached the last four at Wimbledon.

...the only woman among the authors making it through to the last six.

9) ADJ: det ADJ (emphasis) You can use last to indicate that something is extremely undesirable or unlikely.

The last thing I wanted to do was teach...

He would be the last person who would do such a thing.

PRON: PRON to-inf
Last is also a pronoun.

I would be the last to say that science has explained everything.

10) PRON: the PRON that The last you see of someone or the last you hear of them is the final time that you see them or talk to them.

She disappeared shouting, `To the river, to the river!' And that was the last we saw of her...

I had a feeling it would be the last I heard of him.

Ant:
11) VERB If an event, situation, or problem lasts for a particular length of time, it continues to exist or happen for that length of time.

[V for n] The marriage had lasted for less than two years...

[V n] The games lasted only half the normal time...

Enjoy it because it won't last. [Also V adv]

12) VERB If something lasts for a particular length of time, it continues to be able to be used for that time, for example because there is some of it left or because it is in good enough condition.

[V for n] You only need a very small blob of glue, so one tube lasts for ages...

[V n] The repaired sail lasted less than 24 hours...

[V adv] The implication is that this battery lasts twice as long as batteries made by other battery makers...

[V adv] If you build more plastics into cars, the car lasts longer. [Also V]

13) VERB You can use last in expressions such as last the game, last the course, and last the week, to indicate that someone manages to take part in an event or situation right to the end, especially when this is very difficult for them.

[V n] They wouldn't have lasted the full game...

[V n] I almost lasted the two weeks. I only had a couple of days to do.

Syn:
To last out means the same as to last.

V P n (not pron) It'll be a miracle if the band lasts out the tour... V P A breakfast will be served to those who last out till dawn!

14) See also lasting
15) PHRASE: PHR with cl If you say that something has happened at last or at long last you mean it has happened after you have been hoping for it for a long time.

I'm so glad that we've found you at last!...

Here, at long last, was the moment he had waited for...

At last the train arrived in the station...

`All right', he said at last. `You may go.'

Syn:
16) PHRASE You use expressions such as the night before last, the election before last and the leader before last to refer to the period of time, event, or person that came immediately before the most recent one in a series.

It was the dog he'd heard the night before last...

In the budget before last a tax penalty on the mobile phone was introduced.

17) PHRASE: V inflects If someone breathes their last, they die. [LITERARY]
18) PHRASE: PHR n, PHR after v You can use phrases such as the last but one, the last but two, or the last but three, to refer to the thing or person that is, for example, one, two, or three before the final person or thing in a group or series.

It's the last but one day in the athletics programme...

The British team finished last but one.

19) PHRASE: PHR n (emphasis) You use every last to emphasize that you are talking about all the people or things in a group or all the parts of something.

I'd spent all I had, every last penny...

You'll never quite get rid of every last bit of grit...

My tape recorder did not catch every last word.

20) PHRASE The expression last in, first out is used to say that the last person who started work in an organization should be the first person to leave it, if fewer people are needed.

Workers will go on a `last in, first out' basis.

21) PHRASE: PHR with cl You can use expressions such as the last I heard and the last she heard to introduce a piece of information that is the most recent that you have on a particular subject.

The last I heard, Joe and Irene were still happily married.

22) PHRASE: V inflects If you leave something or someone until last, you delay using, choosing, or dealing with them until you have used, chosen, or dealt with all the others.

I have left my best wine until last...

I picked first all the people who usually were left till last.

23) PHRASE: V inflects If you see the last of someone, you do not expect to see them or deal with them again.

I honestly thought I'd seen the last of you.

24) PHRASE: PHR after v If you say that something goes on happening to the last, you mean that it happens throughout the whole of a book, film, or event.

...a highly readable political thriller with plenty of twists of plot to keep you guessing to the last.

25) PHRASE: group PHR (emphasis) If you say that someone is a particular kind of person to the last, you are emphasizing that they continue to be that kind of person.

A gentleman to the last, he did not run, but merely attempted to stroll away...

Armstrong was tall and handsome to the last.

26) PHRASE: PHR after v You use expressions such as to the last detail and to the last man to indicate that a plan, situation, or activity includes every single person, thing, or part involved.

Every movement, no matter how casual and spontaneous, needs to be worked out to the last detail...

Our troops are being used up to the last man.

27) last breathsee breath
to have the last laughsee laugh
last minutesee minute
someone's last standsee stand
the last strawsee straw
last thingsee thing
Phrasal Verbs:

English dictionary. 2008.

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Synonyms:

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