2 verb
ring2 S1 W2 past tense rang, past participle rung


a) [intransitive and transitive]C to make a bell make a sound, especially to call someone's attention to you or to call someone to help you:
I rang the doorbell but no one came.
ring for
The sign said, 'Ring for service'.
Instead of ringing for the maid, she made the tea herself.
b) [intransitive] if a bell rings, it makes a noise:
The bell rang for the end of break.


a) [intransitive and transitive] British English to make a telephone call to someone [= call, phone]:
I was going to ring you but I don't have your number.
ring for
Sally rang for a taxi.
see usage note call1
b) [intransitive]TCT if a telephone rings, it makes a sound to show that someone is telephoning you:
The phone hasn't stopped ringing all day.


a) CHBH if your ears ring, they make a continuous sound that only you can hear, after you have been somewhere very noisy or heard a loud sound:
The explosion made our ears ring.
b) literaryC if a place rings with a sound, it is full of that sound
ring with
The whole room rang with their laughter.

ring a bell

informal if something rings a bell, it reminds you of something, but you cannot remember exactly what it is:
Her name rings a bell but I can't remember her face.

not ring true

if something does not ring true, you do not believe it, even though you are not sure why:
It was a possible explanation, but it didn't quite ring true.

ring the changes

British English to make changes to something, not because it needs changing but just in order to make it more interesting, more attractive etc:
Choose a variety of foods and ring the changes with meals.

ring hollow

if something that someone says rings hollow, you do not feel that it is true or sincere:
Assurances that things have changed ring hollow in many ears.

ring in your ears

C if a sound or remark rings in your ears, you continue to remember it very clearly, exactly as it sounded, after it has finished:
He left Washington with the president's praises ringing in his ears.

ring (somebody) back

phrasal verb
TCT to telephone someone again, or to telephone someone because you were not available when they telephoned you [= call (somebody) back]:
I'll ring back as soon as I find out anything.
John rang, and he wants you to ring him back.

ring in

phrasal verb
1 British EnglishTCT to telephone the place where you work:
Jane's rung in to say she'll be late.
He rang in sick (=telephoned to say he was ill) every morning for a week.

ring in the New Year

TMC to celebrate the beginning of the New Year

ring off

phrasal verb
TCT to end a telephone call [↪ hang up]:
He rang off without giving his name.

ring out

phrasal verb
1C a voice, bell etc that rings out is loud and clear:
The sound of a shot rang out.

ring out the Old Year

TMC to celebrate the end of the year

ring round (somebody)

phrasal verb
TCT to make telephone calls to a group of people, in order to organize something, find out information etc:
I'll ring round to see whether anyone's interested in coming with us.
She rang round all the agencies.

ring up

phrasal verb
1 British EnglishTCT to telephone someone [= call (somebody) up]
ring somebody ↔ up
I'll ring the manager up tomorrow.
I rang up and made an appointment.

ring something ↔ up

BB to press buttons on a cash register to record how much money is being put inside:
The cashier rang up £300 by mistake.

Dictionary results for "ring"
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