Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

Date: 1500-1600
Origin: good cheap 'at a good price, cheaply', from cheap 'trade, price' (11-18 centuries), from Old English ceap

cheap

1 adjective
     
cheap1 S1 W2 comparative cheaper, superlative cheapest
1

low price

not at all expensive, or lower in price than you expected [≠ expensive]:
cheap rail fares
the cheapest TV on the market
Property is cheaper in Spain than here.
a cheap shop (=one that sells goods cheaply)
The equipment is relatively cheap and simple to use.
This coat was dirt cheap informal (=very cheap).
cheap and cheerful British English (=simple and not expensive, but of reasonable quality)
a cheap and cheerful Italian restaurant
2

bad quality

low in price and quality:
Cheap wine gives me a headache.
cheap jewellery
The furniture looked cheap and nasty.
a cheap imitation of the real thing
3

not expensive to use

not costing much to use or to employ [= inexpensive]
Gas appliances are usually cheaper to run than electric ones.
For the employer, a part-time workforce means a cheap labour supply.
4

not deserving respect

showing a lack of honesty, moral principles, or sincere feelings, so that you do not deserve respect:
She felt cheap and stupid, like a naughty child caught stealing.
You're lying, aren't you? You're so cheap.
His remark was a cheap shot at short people.
another cheap political stunt
It was nothing but a cheap trick (=unkind trick).
5

not generous

American English not liking to spend money [= mean British English]
She's too cheap to take a cab.
6

cheap thrill

excitement that does not take much effort to get:
Bella will sleep with anyone for a cheap thrill.
7

life is cheap

used to say that it is not important if people die
8

cheap at the price/at any price

British English, cheap at twice the price so good, useful, or desirable that the cost is not important
cheaply adverb:
a cheaply furnished room
They lived as cheaply as possible.
cheapness noun [uncountable]
the relative cheapness of housing
WORD FOCUS: cheap WORD FOCUS: cheap
reasonable not too expensive
economical
used about cars, systems, or methods that do not cost a lot of money to use
be good value
to be well worth the price you pay
be a bargain
to be very cheap
WORD FOCUS: bad WORD FOCUS: bad
very bad: awful, terrible, horrible, lousy informal, appalling, ghastly, atrocious, horrendous

bad, but not very bad: not very good, mediocre, second-rate, so-so, lacklustre

of bad quality: shoddy, inferior, poor quality, cheap, crummy informal

bad at doing something: be no good at something

very bad at doing something: hopeless, terrible, useless, lousy informal, incompetent

morally bad: evil, wicked, immoral, corrupt, sick, perverted, degenerate


See also
bad

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