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all but

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WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2015
all /ɔl/USA pronunciation adj. [usually before a noun;
but see definition 1]
  1. the whole or full amount of or number of: [~ + the + uncountable noun]She ate all the cake.[~ + some nouns of time]I waited for her call all afternoon.[~ (+ the) + plural noun]all (the) students.[after the subject of a sentence]The girls all enjoy camping.[after a pronoun objectect of a sentence]I've seen them all.
  2. the greatest possible: with all speed.
  3. any; any whatever: beyond all doubt.
  4. entirely;
    purely: The coat is all wool.
  5. dominated by a particular feature:I'm all thumbs ( = very clumsy) when it comes to auto repairs.

  • the whole quantity, number, or entire amount:Did you eat all of the peanuts?

  • n. 
  • [uncountable] one's whole interest, energy, or property: Give it your all.
  • [uncountable] the entire area, place, environment, or the like: All is calm, all is bright.
  • [plural; used with a plural verb] every one;
    everybody (a formal use):All rise, the court is in session.
  • [uncountable] everything:Is that all you've got to say?

  • adv. 
  • wholly; entirely;
    completely: all alone.
  • each;
    apiece:The score was tied at one all.
  • idiom
    1. Idioms all but, [be + ~] almost;
      very nearly: These batteries are all but dead.
    2. Idioms all in all, everything considered;
      in general: All in all, we're better off now than we were ten years ago.
    3. Idioms all out, with one's best effort:The team went all out to win the game.
    4. Idioms all the better, so much the better:If my opponent loses, all the better for me.
    5. Idioms, Informal Terms all there, [usually with a negative word or phrase, or in questions] mentally competent:She doesn't seem all there.
    6. Idiomsall told, all together; all included:All told, some sixty-five people came to the party.
    7. Idioms and all, and so forth:What with the late hour and all, we must leave.
    8. at all, (used to give emphasis to a word or phrase, esp. a word or phrase with "any'' in it):
      • in the slightest degree or amount:Aren't there any doughnuts left at all?
      • for any reason: Why bother at all?
      • in any way: didn't cause me any trouble at all.
      • (used in other phrases for emphasis):Look, I'll take a job anywhere at all.
    9. Idioms for all (that), in spite of (that); notwithstanding: It was a difficult time living abroad, but for all that, it was a good year.
    10. Idioms in all, all included;
      all together:There were forty in all.
    11. Idiomsof all, (used to give emphasis after a word like "first'', "last'', "best''):First of all, welcome to our college.


    Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::

    all /ɔːl/ determiner
    1. the whole quantity or amount of; totality of; every one of a class: all the rice, all men are mortal
    2. (as pronoun; functioning as sing or plural): all of it is nice, all are welcome
    3. (in combination with a noun used as a modifier): an all-ticket match, an all-amateur tournament, an all-night sitting
    4. the greatest possible: in all earnestness
    5. any whatever: to lose all hope of recovery, beyond all doubt
    6. all alongall the time
    7. all butalmost; nearly: all but dead
    8. all ofno less or smaller than: she's all of thirteen years
    9. all overfinished; at an end
    10. over the whole area (of something); everywhere (in, on, etc): all over England
    11. typically; representatively (in the phrase that's me (you, him, us, them,etc) all over)
    12. unduly effusive towards
    13. See all in
    14. all in alleverything considered: all in all, it was a great success
    15. the object of one's attention or interest: you are my all in all
    16. all the ⇒ (followed by a comparative adjective or adverb) so much (more or less) than otherwise: we must work all the faster now
    17. all toodefinitely but regrettably: it's all too true
    18. at all ⇒ (used with a negative or in a question) in any way whatsoever or to any extent or degree: I didn't know that at all
    19. even so; anyway: I'm surprised you came at all
    20. be all forinformal to be strongly in favour of
    21. for allin so far as; to the extent that: for all anyone knows, he was a baron
    22. notwithstanding: for all my pushing, I still couldn't move it
    23. for all thatin spite of that: he was a nice man for all that
    24. in allaltogether: there were five of them in all
    1. (in scores of games) apiece; each: the score at half time was three all
    2. completely: all alone
    1. preceded by my, your, his, etc: (one's) complete effort or interest: to give your all, you are my all
    2. totality or whole
    Etymology: Old English eall; related to Old High German al, Old Norse allr, Gothic alls all

    'all but' also found in these entries:

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