WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2017
con•tact /ˈkɑntækt/USA pronunciation   n. 
  1. the act or state of touching or of being near enough to touch:[uncountable]The rear wheels lost contact with the road.
  2. [uncountable] the act or state of being in communication:The pilot of the plane lost contact with the control tower.[in + ~]still in contact with my high school friends.
  3. a person who can gain access to favors, influential people, etc.:[countable]had a contact down at city hall.
  4. Electricity a part of an electric circuit that joins electric conductors, used for completing or interrupting a circuit:[countable]The reason for the power failure was that some contacts were worn and failed to complete a circuit.
  5. contact lens :[countable]She wears contacts.

v. [+ object]
  1. to communicate with; get in touch with;
    reach: We'll contact you by phone.
con•tact•ee, n. [countable]
con•tac•tu•al /kɑnˈtæktʃuəl/USA pronunciation  adj. See -tact-.

WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2017
con•tact  (kontakt),USA pronunciation n. 
  1. the act or state of touching; a touching or meeting, as of two things or people.
  2. immediate proximity or association.
  3. an acquaintance, colleague, or relative through whom a person can gain access to information, favors, influential people, and the like.
  4. Electricitya junction of electric conductors, usually metal, that controls current flow, often completing or interrupting a circuit.
  5. Geologythe interface, generally a planar surface, between strata that differ in lithology or age.
  6. Medicinea person who has lately been exposed to an infected person.
  7. Sociologya condition in which two or more individuals or groups are placed in communication with each other. Cf. categoric contact, primary contact, secondary contact, sympathetic contact.
  8. See  contact lens. 

v.t. 
  1. to put or bring into contact.
  2. to communicate with:We'll contact you by mail or telephone.

v.i. 
  1. to enter into or be in contact.

adj. 
  1. involving or produced by touching or proximity:contact allergy.
con•tac•tu•al  (kon takcho̅o̅ əl),USA pronunciation adj.  con•tactu•al•ly, adv. 
  • *contag-, variant stem of contingere to touch (con- con- + -tingere, combining form of tangere to touch) + -tus suffix of verb, verbal action; compare tango, attain
  • Latin contāctus a touching, equivalent. to contāc-
  • 1620–30
    Many verbs in English have derived from nouns. One can head an organization or toe the mark;
    butter the bread or bread the cutlet. Hence, grammatically at least, there is no historical justification for the once frequently heard criticism of contact used as a verb meaning "to communicate with'':The managing editor contacted each reporter personally.Despite the earlier objections to it and probably largely because there is no other one-word verb in the language to express the same idea, this use of contact has become standard in all types of speech and writing. Contact as a noun meaning "a person through whom one can gain access to information and the like'' is also standard:My contact at the embassy says that the coup has been successful.


Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::

contact n /ˈkɒntækt/
  1. the act or state of touching physically
  2. the state or fact of close association or communication (esp in the phrases in contact, make contact)
  3. a junction of two or more electrical conductors
  4. the part of the conductors that makes the junction
  5. the part of an electrical device to which such connections are made
  6. an acquaintance, esp one who might be useful in business, as a means of introduction, etc
  7. any person who has been exposed to a contagious disease
  8. See contact print
  9. (usually plural)
    an informal name for contact lens
  10. (modifier) of or relating to irritation or inflammation of the skin caused by touching the causative agent: contact dermatitis
  11. (modifier) denoting an insecticide or herbicide that kills on contact, rather than after ingestion or absorption
  12. (modifier) of or maintaining contact
  13. (modifier) requiring or involving (physical) contact: the contact sport of boxing
vb /ˈkɒntækt; kənˈtækt/
  1. when intr, often followed by with: to put, come, or be in association, touch, or communication
Etymology: 17th Century: from Latin contactus, from contingere to touch on all sides, pollute, from tangere to touch

contactual /kɒnˈtæktjʊəl/ adj



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