From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary Englishldoce_727_zjustjust1 /dʒəst; strong dʒʌst/ ●●●S1W1 adverb1EXACTexactlyA good strong cup of coffee is just what I need right now.The house was large and roomy; just right for us.She looks just like her mother.Just what do you think you’re trying to do?just on British EnglishIt’s just on three o’clock.Just then (=exactly at that moment), Mrs Robovitch appeared at the bedroom door.Just as (=at the exact moment when) I opened the door, the telephone started to ring.A nice hot bath – just the thing (=exactly the right thing) to relax sore muscles.► see thesaurus at exactly2ONLYnothing more than the thing, amount, action etc that you are mentioning syn onlyIt’s nothing serious – just a small cut.Don’t be too hard on him – he’s just a kid.Can you wait just a few minutes?It’s not just me – there are other people involved as well.RegisterIn written English, people often prefer to use simply rather than just, which sounds rather informal:It’s simply a question of priorities.3JUST/A MOMENT AGOonly a short time agoJohn’s just told me that he’s getting married.I’ve just been out shopping.► see thesaurus at recently4JUST/A MOMENT AGOat this moment or at that momentWait a minute – I’m just coming.He was just leaving when the phone rang.I’m just finishing my homework – it won’t take long.The concert was just about to start.5EMPHASIZEused to emphasize what you are sayingIt just isn’t true.I just love being in the mountains.It was just wonderful to see Joyce again.I just wish I could believe you.6JUST/A MOMENT AGOonly by a small amount, time, distance etcjust before/after/over etcWe moved here just after our son was born.I saw her just before she died.It’s just under three centimetres long.7JUST/ALMOST NOTused to show that something which happens almost does not happen syn barely, hardlyHe just managed to get home before dark.We could just see the coast of France in the distance.Those pants only just fit you now.She was earning just enough money to live on (=enough but not more than enough).8 →just about9 →just as good/bad/big etc10 →just have to do something11 →not just any12 →would just as soon13 →may just/might just14 →not just yet15 →just because ... it doesn’t meanSPOKEN PHRASES16 →just a minute/second/moment17a)ASK FOR something/ASK somebody TO DO somethingused when politely asking something or telling someone to do somethingCould I just say a few words before we start?Would you just explain to us how the system works.b)TELL/ORDER somebody TO DO somethingused when firmly telling someone to do somethingLook, just shut up for a minute!Now, just listen to what I’m telling you.18 →it’s just that19 →just now20 →just think/imagine/look21 →it’s/that’s just as well22 →isn’t she just/aren’t they just etc23 →just so → just the sameat same2(3), → just in caseat case1(3), → just my luckat luck1(12), → might just as wellat might1(9)GRAMMAR: Word order• Just comes before a main verb: I just saw him.• Just comes after ‘be’ when it is the main verb: She is just seventeen.• Just comes after the first auxiliary verb: I have just seen him.✗Don’t say: I just have seen him.
Examples from the Corpus
just• He's just a kid. Don't be so hard on him.• There would be nothing in the Rory Collins thing, she knew that, it was just a wildflirtation.• I just can't believe it.• His car hit a wall, but he escaped with just cuts and bruises.• I was just going to bed, he said.• I just got off the phone with Mrs. Kravitz.• Can you wait five minutes? I just have to iron this.• I just heard the news! Congratulations!• I just made it to class on time.• At the moment we're just making enough money to cover our costs.• "Were there a lot of people there?" "No, just me and David."• "Can I speak to Tonyplease?'' "Sorry, you've justmissed him.''• He started his own small shop - at first justsellingnewspapers, then books and magazines.• I suppose it's just something that I've learned to live with.• He said he was leaving her and proceeded to do just that!• "Does everyone have to wear uniform?" "No, just the first year students."• He and his brother are just the same -- lazy.• No doubt there are many, but I would like to single out just three.• I didn't mean to interfere - I was just trying to help.• Treephysiology and dendrochronology are just two of the possibleapplications for portable computer tomography.• Could I just use your phone for a minute?• I think she just wanted someone to talk to.• A new handbag! That's just what I wanted.• I'm not surejust who you mean.just the thing• You could tell from the eagerness of her smile that a war would be just the thing.• Once, he had considered its aged look as just the thing, after the fashion of the Boston CrackedShoe look.• Knowles' cures were just the thing, and the price never compounded the ailment.• That's just the thing for the fancy-dress parade!• That's just the thing I was looking for.• For him at that moment, the show was not just the thing, it was the priority.• It sounds just the thing - like fate, really, after what you were saying.• A cup of hotchocolate would be just the thing right now.• Yet, if you show people the ad, they will tell you just the things that the strategy was looking for.• It is all good fun and just the thing to encourage not-especially-musical people to discover that realsingers make everything sound great.just before/after/over etc• He turned, just before going airside.• Congressapproved it just before it adjourned last year.• It had been taken in Marbella, just before Renée's death.• A certaintension is present, like the atmosphere in a theater just before the curtain goes up.• The family fled to Hong Kong just after the War, when the Communists were coming to power.just enough• Dropouts from drama school who had learned just enough about theatricality to make a nuisance of themselves.• Mainly New Zealand wool was used for which just enoughforeigncurrency was released to buy the minimumimmediaterequirement.• Between Rudolfo and the gamekeeper there's just enough of the land being cultivated for it not to be confiscated.• There will be just enough time for some semblance of the democratic process within the party to operate.• Not enough to start a war; just enough to let me stand my ground without having to think about it first.• Don't over-fill kettles - heatjust enough water for your needs.• In any case, he shook it through a sieve to fix its grainsize and addedjust enough water.justjust2 /dʒʌst/ ●●○ adjective1FAIRmorally right and fairHenry sincerely believed that he was fighting a just war.a just settlementCharlemagne was respected as a just ruler.► see thesaurus at fair2DESERVEdeserved by someonea just reward for their loyal serviceWhat would be a just punishment for such a crime?I hope that he’s caught and gets his just deserts (=is punished in the way he deserves). —justly adverbThese men are criminals, but they must be dealt with justly.an achievement of which we can be justly proud