How to use
to need to pay someone for something that they have done for you or sold to you, or to need to give someone back money that they have lent you
owe somebody money/£10 etc
I owe my brother $50.
owe somebody for something
I still owe you for the taxi.
How much do I owe you
often used to show that you want to pay for something
owe something to somebody
the money owed to credit card companies
to feel that you should do something for someone or give someone something, because they have done something for you or given something to you
He asked for help from a colleague who
owe somebody a drink/letter etc
I owe Shaun a letter; I must write soon.
Thanks a lot for being so understanding about all this -
I owe you one
used to thank someone who has helped you, and to say that you are willing to help them in the future
be in a position in which someone has helped you, so that you should help them
Let's go and see Joe - he owes me!
owe somebody an explanation/apology
to feel that you should give someone an explanation of why you did something, or say you are sorry
You owe him an apology.
help to achieve something
to have something or achieve something because of what someone else has done
owe something to somebody
He probably owes his life to her prompt action.
to know that someone's help has been important to you in achieving something
owe somebody a lot/owe somebody a great deal
'I owe my parents a lot,' he admitted.
He owes a great deal to his publishers.
owe it all to somebody/owe everything to somebody
I owe it all to you.
owe somebody a debt (of gratitude)
the debt that we owe to our teachers
to be successful because of the good effect or influence of something or someone
owes more to
good luck than to careful management.
owed much to
the research of his friend, Hugh Kingsmill.
owe it to somebody to do something
to feel you should do something for someone, because they have helped you or given you support
You owe it to your supporters not to give up now.
owe it to yourself to do something
to feel you should try to achieve something because it is what you deserve
You owe it to yourself to take some time off.
owe loyalty/allegiance etc to somebody
to have a duty to obey someone
provinces owing allegiance to the Emperor
think that the world owes you a living
to be unwilling to work in order to get things, and expect them to be provided for you - used to show disapproval
Definition from the Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
Advanced Learner's Dictionary.
Dictionary results for "owe"
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