house ( houses plural & 3rd person present) ( housing present participle) ( housed past tense & past participle )
Pronounced [PH:h][PH:a][PH:U][PH:s] for the noun and adjective, and [PH:h][PH:a][PH:U][PH:z] for the verb. The form houses is pronounced [PH:h][PH:a][PH:U][PH:z][PH:I][PH:z].
1 n-count A house is a building in which people live, usually the people belonging to one family.
She has moved to a smaller house., ...her parents' house in Warwickshire.
2 n-sing You can refer to all the people who live together in a house as thehouse.
usu the N
If he set his alarm clock for midnight, it would wake the whole house...
3 n-count House is used in the names of types of places where people go to eat and drink.
...a steak house., ...an old Salzburg coffee house.
4 n-count House is used in the names of types of companies, especially ones which publish books, lend money, or design clothes.
Many of the clothes come from the world's top fashion houses..., Eventually she was fired from her job at a publishing house.
5 n-in-names House is sometimes used in the names of office buildings and large private homes or expensive houses.
(mainly BRIT) n N
I was to go to the very top floor of Bush House in Aldwych., ...Harewood House near Leeds.
6 n-count You can refer to the two main bodies of Britain's parliament and the United States of America's legislature as theHouse or a House.
Some members of the House and Senate worked all day yesterday...
7 n-count A house is a family which has been or will be important for many generations, especially the family of a king or queen.
...the House of Windsor.
8 n-count The house is the part of a theatre, cinema, or other place of entertainment where the audience sits. You can also refer to the audience at a particular performance as the house.
They played in front of a packed house.
9 adj A restaurant's house wine is the cheapest wine it sells, which is not listed by name on the wine list.
Tweed ordered a carafe of the house wine.
10 verb To house someone means to provide a house or flat for them to live in.
Part III of the Housing Act 1985 imposes duties on local authorities to house homeless people... V n
Regrettably we have to house families in these inadequate flats. V n adv/prep
11 verb A building or container that houses something is the place where it is located or from where it operates.
The château itself is open to the public and houses a museum of motorcycles and cars... V n
12 verb If you say that a building houses a number of people, you mean that is the place where they live or where they are staying.
The building will house twelve boys and eight girls... V n
14 If a person or their performance or speech brings the house down, the audience claps, laughs, or shouts loudly because the performance or speech is very impressive or amusing.
bring the house down phrase V inflects
It's really an amazing dance. It just always brings the house down.
15 If two people get on like a house on fire, they quickly become close friends, for example because they have many interests in common.
get on like a house on fire phrase V inflects
16 If you are given something in a restaurant or bar on the house, you do not have to pay for it.
on the house phrase v-link PHR, PHR after v
The owner knew about the engagement and brought them glasses of champagne on the house.
17 If someone gets their house in order, puts their house in order, or sets their house in order, they arrange their affairs and solve their problems.
get/put/set one's house in order phrase V inflects Some think Stempel's departure will help the company get its financial house in order...
Acid house is a type of electronic dance music with a strong, repeated rhythm. n-uncount
art-house , arthouse
An art-house film is a film that is intended to be a serious artistic work rather than a piece of popular entertainment. adj ADJ n
boarding house ( boarding houses plural )
The spellings boardinghouse in American English, and boarding-house in British English are also used. A boarding house is a house which people pay to stay in for a short time. n-count
chapter house ( chapter houses plural )
1 n-count A chapter house is the building or set of rooms in the grounds of a cathedral where the members of the clergy hold their meetings.
2 n-count In a university or college, a chapter house is the place where a fraternity or sorority lives or meets.
charnel house ( charnel houses plural ) A charnel house is a place where the bodies and bones of dead people are stored. n-count
clearing house ( clearing houses plural ) , clearing-house
1 n-count If an organization acts as a clearing house, it collects, sorts, and distributes specialized information.
The centre will act as a clearing house for research projects for former nuclear scientists.
2 n-count A clearing house is a central bank which deals with all the business between the banks that use its services. (BUSINESS)
coffee house ( coffee houses plural ) , coffee-house A coffee house is a kind of bar where people sit to drink coffee and talk. Coffee houses were especially popular in Britain in the 18th century. n-count
council house ( council houses plural ) In Britain, a council house is a house that is owned by a local council and that people can rent at a low cost. n-count
country house ( country houses plural ) A country house is a large, often attractive, house in the country, usually one that is or was owned by a rich or noble family.
doll's house ( doll's houses plural )
in AM, use dollhouse A doll's house is a toy in the form of a small house, which contains tiny dolls and furniture for children to play with. n-count
doss-house ( doss-houses plural ) , doss house, dosshouse A doss-house is a kind of cheap hotel in a city for people who have no home and very little money.
in AM, use flophouse
free house ( free houses plural ) In Britain, a free house is a pub which is not owned by a particular company and so can sell whatever beers it chooses. n-count
full house ( full houses plural ) If a theatre has afull house for a particular performance, it has as large an audience as it can hold. n-count
...playing to a full house.
guest house ( guest houses plural ) , guesthouse
1 n-count A guest house is a small hotel.
2 n-count A guest house is a small house in the grounds of a large house, where visitors can stay.
halfway house ( halfway houses plural )
1 n-sing A halfway house is an arrangement or thing that has some of the qualities of two different things.
A halfway house between the theatre and cinema is possible. Olivier created one in his imaginative `Henry V' in 1945.
2 n-count A halfway house is a home for people such as former prisoners, mental patients, or drug addicts who can stay there for a limited period of time to get used to life outside prison or hospital.
If someone is underhouse arrest, they are officially ordered not to leave their home, because they are suspected of being involved in an illegal activity. n-uncount usu under N
house guest ( house guests plural ) A house guest is a person who is staying at someone's house for a period of time. n-count
In a theatre or cinema, when the house lights dim or go down, the lights where the audience sits are switched off. When thehouse lights come up, the lights are switched on. n-plural the N
House of Commons
The House of Commons is the part of parliament in Britain or Canada whose members are elected. The building where they meet is also called the House of Commons. n-proper the N
The House of Commons has overwhelmingly rejected demands to bring back the death penalty for murder...
house of God ( houses of God plural ) A Christian church is sometimes referred to as a house of God. n-count
House of Lords
The House of Lords is the part of the parliament in Britain whose members have not been elected. The building where they meet is also called theHouse of Lords. n-proper the N
The legislation has twice been rejected by the House of Lords.
House of Representatives
The House of Representatives is the less powerful of the two parts of Congress in the United States, or the equivalent part of the system of government in some other countries. n-proper the N
The House of Representatives approved a new budget plan.
house owner ( house owners plural ) , house-owner A house owner is a person who owns a house. n-count
house party ( house parties plural ) A house party is a party held at a big house in the country, usually at a weekend, where the guests stay for a few days. n-count
house plant ( house plants plural ) , houseplant A house plant is a plant which is grown in a pot indoors. n-count
house-to-house , house to house
A house-to-house activity involves going to all the houses in an area one after another. adj ADJ n
Security officers have carried out a number of house-to-house searches.
House-to-house is also an adverb., adv ADV after v
They're going house to house, rounding up the residents.
In-house work or activities are done by employees of an organization or company, rather than by workers outside the organization or company. adj
A lot of companies do in-house training.
In-house is also an adverb., adv
The magazine is still produced in-house.
lodging house ( lodging houses plural ) A lodging house is a house where people can rent rooms to live in or stay in.
(mainly BRIT) n-count
in AM, usually use rooming house
manor house ( manor houses plural ) A manor house is the main house that is or was on a medieval manor.
meeting house ( meeting houses plural ) A meeting house is a building in which certain groups of Christians, for example Quakers, meet in order to worship together. n-count
movie house ( movie houses plural ) A movie house is the same as a movie theater.
1 n-uncount If you say that someone keeps open house, you mean that they welcome friends or visitors to their house whenever they arrive and allow them to stay for as long as they want to.
Father Illtyd kept open house and the boys would congregate in his study during their recreation time, playing cards or games.
2 n-var An open house is a day on which members of the public are encouraged to visit a particular institution or place to see what it is like.
(AM) also N n
A week later, Sara and I attended open house at Ted's school...
in BRIT, use open day
opera house ( opera houses plural ) An opera house is a theatre that is specially designed for the performance of operas. n-count; n-in-names
...Sydney Opera House.
packing house ( packing houses plural ) A packing house is a company that processes and packs food, especially meat, to be sold.
public house ( public houses plural ) A public house is the same as a pub.
publishing house ( publishing houses plural ) A publishing house is a company which publishes books. n-count
rooming house ( rooming houses plural ) A rooming house is a building that is divided into small flats or single rooms which people rent to live in.
row house ( row houses plural ) , rowhouse A row house is one of a row of similar houses that are joined together by both of their side walls.
in BRIT, use terraced house
safe house ( safe houses plural ) , safe-house You can refer to a building as a safe house when it is used as a place where someone can stay and be protected. Safe houses are often used by spies, criminals, or the police. n-count
...a farm which operates as a safe house for criminals on the run.
steak house ( steak houses plural ) , steakhouse A steak house is a restaurant that serves mainly steaks. n-count
summer house ( summer houses plural ) , summerhouse
1 n-count A summer house is a small building in a garden. It contains seats, and people can sit there in the summer.
2 n-count Someone's summer house is a house in the country or by the sea where they spend the summer.
He visited relatives at their summer house on the river.
terraced house ( terraced houses plural ) A terraced house or a terrace house is one of a row of similar houses joined together by their side walls.
in AM, use row house
town house ( town houses plural )
1 n-count A town house is a tall narrow house in a town, usually in a row of similar houses.
2 n-count The town house of a wealthy person is the house that they own in a town or city, rather than another house that they own in the country.
Upper House ( Upper Houses plural )
1 n-proper In Britain, theUpper House is theHouse of Lords.
The decision was announced after objections were raised in the Upper House of Parliament.
2 n-proper In the United States, theUpper House is theSenate.
3 n-count In other countries where the parliament is divided into two groups of members, theUpper House is the more senior of these groups, although it may not be more powerful.
The Upper House of the German parliament is to meet today in Berlin.
Wendy house ( Wendy houses plural ) A Wendy house is a small toy house for a child to play in.
in AM, use playhouse
The White House is the official home in Washington DC of the President of the United States. You can also use the White House to refer to the President of the United States and his or her officials. n-proper the N, N n
He drove to the White House..., The White House has not participated in any talks.