Topic: LAW


1 noun
charge1 S1 W1


[uncountable and countable] the amount of money you have to pay for goods or services:
Gas charges will rise in July.
charge of
an admission charge of $5
charge for
There's a 50 pence booking charge for each ticket.
Guided tours are provided at no charge.
Your order will be sent free of charge (=at no cost).
The shop will fit them for a small extra charge.


[uncountable] the position of having control or responsibility for a group of people or an activity
in charge (of something)
He asked to speak to the person in charge.
the officer in charge of the investigation
Stern put Travis in charge of (=gave him control of) the research team.
Owens came in and took charge of (=took control of) the situation.
A commander in each county was to have charge of the local militia.

somebody/something you look after


be in/under somebody's charge

if someone or something is in your charge, you are responsible for looking after them:
teachers that do their best for the children in their charge
The files were left in your charge.
b) [countable] formal someone that you are responsible for looking after:
Sarah bought some chocolate for her three young charges.


[countable]SCL an official statement made by the police saying that they believe someone may be guilty of a crimeCOLLOCATIONS COLLOCATIONS
on a charge (of something) bring/press charges (=state officially that someone is guilty of a crime) face charges (=be accused of a crime) drop the charges (=decide to stop making charges) deny a charge admit a charge plead guilty to a charge be released without charge be cleared/acquitted of a charge (=when someone is officially not guilty at the end of a trial) be convicted of a charge (=when someone is found guilty at the end of a trial)
charge against
He was found guilty of all six charges against him.
Phillips was arrested on drug charges.
The following morning, he was arrested on a charge of burglary.
Young appeared in court on a murder charge.
charge of
Higgins is facing a charge of armed robbery.
As it was his first offence, the store agreed not to press charges.
Police dropped the charges against him because of insufficient evidence.
Nine people have pleaded guilty to various charges.
Green was cleared of all charges against him.


[countable] a written or spoken statement blaming someone for doing something bad or illegal [= allegation]
charge that
the charge that tobacco companies target young people with their ads
charge of
a charge of racial discrimination against the company
deny/counter a charge (=say that a charge is untrue)
Wallace denied charges that he had lied to investigators.
lay/leave yourself open to a charge of something (=be likely to be blamed for something)
The speech laid him open to charges of political bias.


[countable] an attack in which soldiers or animals move towards someone or something very quickly


lead the charge

to make a strong effort to do something:
It was small businesses that led the charge against health care changes.


TEE [uncountable] electricity that is put into a piece of electrical equipment such as a battery
on charge (=taking in a charge of electricity)
Leave the battery on charge all night.


[countable] an explosive put into something such as a bomb or gun

strength of feelings

[singular] the power of strong feelings:
Cases of child abuse have a strong emotional charge.

get a charge out of something

American English spoken to be excited by something and enjoy it very much:
I got a real charge out of seeing my niece take her first steps.

an order to do something

[countable] formal an order to do something
charge to do something
The old servant fulfilled his master's charge to care for the children.

➔ reverse the charges

at reverse1 (6)

cost, costs, price, charge, fee, fare
Use cost to talk about paying for services and activities, rather than objects The total cost of the trip was under $500. I worked out the cost of the repairs.Your costs are the amount of money you have to spend in order to run a business or to do a particular activity The shop was not making enough money to cover its costs.Use price to mean the amount of money that you must pay for something in a place such as a shop or restaurant We are cutting all our prices (NOT costs) by 50% for one day only! We were shocked by the price of a cup of coffee in London.A charge is the amount you have to pay to have a particular service or use something For a small charge we will also make your hotel reservations. A fee is the amount you have to pay to enter or join something The gallery charges no entrance fee. The fee for membership is £25 per year. It is also the amount you have to pay for a professional service The lawyer explained her fees.A fare is the amount you have to pay to travel somewhere by bus, train, plane etc I need some money for my bus fare. His parents paid his fare to Sydney.See also cost
WORD FOCUS: police WORD FOCUS: police
people in the police force: police officer, policeman, policewoman, detective, cop informal

the building where the police work: police station

what the police do: investigate crimes, find/collect evidence, arrest people who they think are guilty of a crime, question/interrogate people about crimes, hold/detain people in custody, charge people with crimes, release people if they are innocent

See also

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