Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

Language: Old English
Origin: nædl


1 noun
nee‧dle1 [countable]


a) DLH a small thin piece of steel, with a point at one end and a hole in the other, used for sewing [↪ pin]:
a needle and thread
a tapestry needle
b) DLH a knitting needle


MDMDD a very thin, pointed steel tube at the end of a syringe, which is pushed into your skin to put a drug or medicine into your body or to take out blood:
She carried hypodermic needles and syringes in her bag.
Drug users are at risk when they share needles.


TM a long thin piece of metal on a scientific instrument that moves backwards and forwards and points to numbers or directions:
a compass needle

medical treatment

a long, very thin piece of metal used in acupuncture (=a kind of medical treatment originally used in China)


HBP a small needle-shaped leaf, especially from a pine tree:
pine needles


TCR the very small, pointed part in a record player that touches the record in order to play it

like looking for a needle in a haystack

informal used to say that something is almost impossible to find:
Finding out which file you want can be like looking for a needle in a haystack.

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