Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

Topic: FOOD

Language: Old English
Origin: swelgan

swallow

1 verb
     
swal‧low1 S3
1

food

[intransitive and transitive]DF to make food or drink go down your throat and towards your stomach:
He swallowed the last of his coffee and asked for the bill.
Most snakes swallow their prey whole.
2

nervously

[intransitive] to make some of the liquid in your mouth go down your throat because you are frightened or nervous:
Leo swallowed hard and walked into the room.
She swallowed nervously before beginning.
3

believe/accept

[transitive] informal to believe a story, explanation etc that is not actually true:
Do they really think we are stupid enough to swallow that?
I found his story a bit hard to swallow (=difficult to believe).
4

feelings

[transitive] to stop yourself from showing a feeling, especially anger:
She swallowed her anger and turned to face him.
5

swallow your pride

to do something even though it is embarrassing for you, because you have no choice:
I swallowed my pride and phoned him.

➔ a bitter pill (to swallow)

at bitter1 (7)

swallow somebody/something ↔ up

phrasal verb
1 if a company or country is swallowed up by a larger one, it becomes part of it and no longer exists on its own:
Hundreds of small companies have been swallowed up by these huge multinationals.
2 written if something is swallowed up, it disappears because something covers it or hides it:
Jane was soon swallowed up in the crowd.
The countryside is gradually being swallowed up by new developments.
3 if an amount of money is swallowed up, you have to spend it to pay for things:
The extra cash was soon swallowed up.
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