catches, catching, caught
1) VERB If you catch a person or animal, you capture them after chasing them, or by using a trap, net, or other device.

[V n] Police say they are confident of catching the gunman...

[V n] Where did you catch the fish?...

[V-ed] I wondered if it was an animal caught in a trap.

2) VERB If you catch an object that is moving through the air, you seize it with your hands.

[V n] I jumped up to catch a ball and fell over.

Catch is also a noun.

He missed the catch and the match was lost.

3) VERB If you catch a part of someone's body, you take or seize it with your hand, often in order to stop them going somewhere.

[V n] Liz caught his arm...

[V n prep] He knelt beside her and caught her hand in both of his...

[V n prep] Garrido caught her by the wrist.

4) VERB If one thing catches another, it hits it accidentally or manages to hit it.

[V n] The stinging slap almost caught his face...

[V n with n] I may have caught him with my elbow but it was just an accident...

[V n on n] He caught her on the side of her head with his other fist.

5) V-ERG If something catches on or in an object, it accidentally becomes attached to the object or stuck in it.

[V prep] Her ankle caught on a root, and she almost lost her balance...

[V n prep] A man caught his foot in the lawnmower.

6) VERB When you catch a bus, train, or plane, you get on it in order to travel somewhere.

[V n] We were in plenty of time for Anthony to catch the ferry...

[V n prep] He caught a taxi to Harrods.

7) VERB If you catch someone doing something wrong, you see or find them doing it.

[V n -ing] He caught a youth breaking into a car...

[V n -ing] I don't want to catch you pushing yourself into the picture to get some personal publicity...

[V n prep] Three years ago my wife and I divorced. I caught her with her boss.

8) VERB If you catch yourself doing something, especially something surprising, you suddenly become aware that you are doing it.

[V pron-refl -ing] I caught myself feeling almost sorry for poor Mr Laurence.

9) VERB If you catch something or catch a glimpse of it, you notice it or manage to see it briefly.

[V n] As she turned back she caught the puzzled look on her mother's face...

[V n] He caught a glimpse of the man's face in a shop window.

10) VERB If you catch something that someone has said, you manage to hear it.

[V n] His ears caught a faint cry...

[V n] I do not believe I caught your name...

[V wh] The men out in the corridor were trying to catch what they said.

11) VERB If you catch a TV or radio programme or an event, you manage to see or listen to it.

[V n] Bill turns on the radio to catch the local news...

[V n] The exhibition is on at Droitwich until May 24. You can also catch it at Leominster from June 5.

12) VERB If you catch someone, you manage to contact or meet them to talk to them, especially when they are just about to go somewhere else.

[V n] I dialled Elizabeth's number thinking I might catch her before she left for work...

[V n] Hello, Dolph. Glad I caught you.

13) VERB If something or someone catches you by surprise or at a bad time, you were not expecting them or do not feel able to deal with them.

[V n prep] She looked as if the photographer had caught her by surprise...

[V n prep] I'm sorry but I just cannot say anything. You've caught me at a bad time...

[V n adj] The sheer number of spectators has caught everyone unprepared.

14) VERB If something catches your attention or your eye, you notice it or become interested in it.

[V n] My shoes caught his attention...

[V n] A quick movement across the aisle caught his eye.

15) VERB If someone or something catches a mood or an atmosphere, they successfully represent it or reflect it.

[V n] There's no doubt Mr Putin's speech caught the mood of most deputies.

16) V-PASSIVE If you are caught in a storm or other unpleasant situation, it happens when you cannot avoid its effects.

[be/get V-ed prep] When he was fishing off the island he was caught in a storm and almost drowned...

[be/get V-ed prep] Visitors to the area were caught between police and the rioters.

17) V-PASSIVE If you are caught between two alternatives or two people, you do not know which one to choose or follow.

[be V-ed between pl-n] The Jordanian leader is caught between both sides in the dispute...

[be V-ed between pl-n] She was caught between envy and admiration.

18) VERB If you catch a cold or a disease, you become ill with it.

[V n] The more stress you are under, the more likely you are to catch a cold.

19) VERB To catch liquids or small pieces that fall from somewhere means to collect them in a container.

[V n] The fish is laid out on a large serving plate to catch the juices.

[V n] ...a specially designed breadboard with a tray to catch the crumbs.

20) VERB If something catches the light or if the light catches it, it reflects the light and looks bright or shiny.

[V n] They saw the ship's guns, catching the light of the moon...

[V n in n] Often a fox goes across the road in front of me and I just catch it in the headlights.

21) VERB If the wind or water catches something, it carries or pushes it along.

[V n] A gust of wind caught the parachute.

22) N-COUNT A catch on a window, door, or container is a device that fastens it.

She fiddled with the catch of her bag...

Fit windows with safety locks or catches.

23) N-COUNT: usu sing A catch is a hidden problem or difficulty in a plan or an offer that seems surprisingly good.

The catch is that you work for your supper, and the food and accommodation can be very basic...

`It's your money. You deserve it.' - `What's the catch?'

24) N-COUNT When people have been fishing, their catch is the total number of fish that they have caught.

The catch included one fish over 18 pounds.

25) N-SING If you describe someone as a good catch, you mean that they have lots of good qualities and you think their partner or employer is very lucky to have found them. [INFORMAL]

I was so in love with him and all my friends said what a good catch he was.

26) N-UNCOUNT Catch is a game in which children throw a ball to each other.
27) N-UNCOUNT Catch is a game in which one child chases other children and tries to touch or catch one of them.
28) See also catching
29) PHRASE: PHR -ing, PHR prep/adv (emphasis) You can say things such as `You wouldn't catch me doing that' to emphasize that you would never do a particular thing. [INFORMAL]

You won't catch me giving him a bad review!...

You wouldn't catch me in there, I can tell you.

30) PHRASE: V inflects If someone is caught with their pants down, something happens that they are not prepared for and that reveals something embarrassing or shocking about them. In British English, you can also say that they are caught with their trousers down.

It makes soldiers happy to know that somebody right at the top has been caught with his trousers down...

I think we caught them with their pants down. They're a bit confused.

31) to catch your breathsee breath
to catch firesee fire
to catch hold of somethingsee hold
to be caught between a rock and a hard placesee rock
to be caught shortsee short
to catch sight of somethingsee sight
Phrasal Verbs:

English dictionary. 2008.

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