let

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1 let /ˈlɛt/ verb
lets; let; letting
1 let
/ˈlɛt/
verb
lets; let; letting
Learner's definition of LET
[+ object] : to allow or permit (someone or something) to do something
Usage Let is followed by a verb that has the form of the infinitive without to.
Let is never used as be let; use be allowed or be permitted instead.
[+ object]
used in speech when you are making a polite offer to help someone
used to introduce a polite statement or request
formal used to introduce a command
sometimes used figuratively in a way that is not formal
used to express a warning
Let's and (more formally) let us are used to introduce statements that express a wish, request, suggestion, or command.
◊ The phrase let's go is used in speech to tell someone to go or work faster.
◊ The phrase let us pray is used to introduce a prayer.
◊ The phrases let's face it and let's be honest are used to say that something is true and cannot be denied.
[+ object] : to allow someone to use (something) in return for payment : rent
[no object] chiefly British : to be rented or leased for a specified amount of money
always followed by an adverb or preposition, [+ object] : to allow (someone or something) to go, pass by, etc.

let alone

used to refer to something that is even less likely or possible than the thing previously mentioned
let (someone or something) alone : to not bother or touch (someone or something)

let bygones be bygones

see bygones

let down

[phrasal verb]
let (someone) down
: to fail to give help or support to (someone who needs or expects it) : disappoint
sometimes used figuratively
: to make (someone) unhappy or displeased by not being as good as expected
see also letdown
◊ To let someone down easy/gently is to give someone unpleasant news in a gentle or kind way.
let (something) down or let down (something)
: to cause or allow (something) to move down gradually
: to make (a skirt, a pair of pants, etc.) longer
see also let your hair down at hair

let fly

or let fly with
see 1fly

let go

or let (something or someone) go or let go of (something or someone) or let go (something or someone) : to stop holding or gripping something or someone
often used figuratively
or let (yourself) go : to behave in a very free and open way
let (someone) go
: to allow (someone who is being held as a slave, prisoner, etc.) to be free
: to officially make (someone) leave a job
let (yourself) go : to fail to take care of (yourself)

let it all hang out

informal
: to show your true feelings : to behave in a very free and open way

let loose

see 1loose

let me see

or let's see or let me think
used in speech by someone who is trying to remember something

let off

[phrasal verb]
let (someone) off or let off (someone) : to allow (someone) to get off a bus, an airplane, etc.
let (someone) off : to allow (someone who has been caught doing something wrong or illegal) to go without being punished
often used in the phrase let (someone) off the hook
let off (something) : to cause (something) to explode or to be released in a forceful way see also let off (some) steam at 1steam

let on

[phrasal verb]
let (someone) on or let on (someone) : to allow (someone) to get on a bus, an airplane, etc.
let on or let on (something) informal : to tell, admit, or show that you know something
US, informal : to pretend or seem

let out

[phrasal verb]
let (something or someone) out or let out (something or someone) : to release (something or someone)
see also letout
let (something) out or let out (something) : to make (a shirt, a pair of pants, etc.) larger
opposite take in at 1take
US, of a school : to end a semester, year, or session

let rip

see 1rip

let sleeping dogs lie

see 1dog

let (someone) have it

informal
: to attack, punish, or criticize (someone) in a violent or angry way

let (someone) in on (something)

: to allow (someone) to know (a secret)

let (someone) know

see 1know

let (someone or something) be

: to not bother or touch (someone or something)

let (something) be known

see 1know

let (something) slip

or let slip (something)
see 1slip

let the cat out of the bag

see cat

let the grass grow under your feet

see 1grass

let up

[phrasal verb]
: to stop or become slower
see also letup
let up on (someone) : to treat (someone) in a less harsh or demanding way
let up on (something) : to apply less pressure to (something)

let (yourself) in for

: to cause (yourself) to have or experience (something bad or unpleasant)
2 let /ˈlɛt/ noun
plural lets
2 let
/ˈlɛt/
noun
plural lets
Learner's definition of LET
[count] tennis
: a serve that is not accepted or allowed officially and must be done again

without let or hindrance

chiefly British, law
: without being interfered with
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