WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2017
tie /taɪ/USA pronunciation   v.,  tied, ty•ing, n. 
  1. to bind or fasten with a cord, etc.:[+ object]to tie a bundle.
  2. to fasten by tightening and knotting (the strings of): [+ object]He stopped to tie his shoes.[no object]Her dress tied in the back.
  3. to form by looping and lacing parts of together, as a knot:[+ object]tied a bow and attached it to the package.
  4. to bind or join firmly:[+ object]Great affection tied them.
  5. to confine or restrict:[+ object]The weather tied us to the house.
  6. to make the same score (as another);
    be equal (to) in a contest: [no object]The two teams tied and had to play an extra period.[+ object]Suddenly the other team tied the score.
  7. tie down, to restrict the freedom or actions of (someone);
    confine: [+ object + down]The desk job ties him down.[+ down + object]to tie down his workers.
  8. tie in, [no object;  ~ + in (+ with + object)]to be consistent or agree with:His story ties in with the facts as we know them.
  9. tie up: 
    • to fasten tightly or securely by tying: [+ up + object]The hijackers tied up all the hostages.[+ object + up]They tied them up.
    • to wrap and secure, as with string;
      bind: [+ up + object]to tie up a package.[+ object + up]to tie a package up.
    • [+ object] to hinder or bring to a stop;
      impede:The accident tied up traffic.
    • [+ object] to prevent others from using by using (exclusively) oneself:tied up the phone all morning.
    • to make (money) unavailable for further investment, use in business, etc.: [+ up + object]They tied up their money in real estate.[+ object + up]They tied their money up in real estate.
    • [+ up + object] to connect;
      show that there is a relationship between:The detective managed to tie up the loose ends of the case.
    • [+ object;  usually: be + tied + up] to be completely occupied with something:The boss is tied up till noon.

n. [countable]
  1. a cord, string, or the like, used for tying, fastening, or wrapping something.
  2. that with which anything is tied.
  3. Clothinga necktie:Your tie is crooked.
  4. Clothingan ornamental knot;
  5. a bond, as of affection:family ties.
  6. a state in which the same number of points has been scored, etc., among competitors;
    also, a competition that ends in such a state:The game ended in a tie.
  7. Buildinga piece used to support buildings or to keep railroad tracks in line.
  1. Idiomstie one on, [no object][Slang.]to get drunk.
  2. Idiomstie the knot, [Informal.]to marry.

WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2017
tie  (tī),USA pronunciation v.,  tied, ty•ing, n. 
  1. to bind, fasten, or attach with a cord, string, or the like, drawn together and knotted:to tie a tin can on a dog's tail.
  2. to draw together the parts of with a knotted string or the like:to tie a bundle tight.
  3. to fasten by tightening and knotting the string or strings of:to tie one's shoes.
  4. to draw or fasten together into a knot, as a cord:to tie one's shoelace.
  5. to form by looping and interlacing, as a knot or bow.
  6. to fasten, join, or connect in any way.
  7. Sport[Angling.]to design and make (an artificial fly).
  8. to bind or join closely or firmly:Great affection tied them.
  9. Informal Termsto unite in marriage.
  10. to confine, restrict, or limit:The weather tied him to the house.
  11. to bind or oblige, as to do something.
  12. to make the same score as;
    equal in a contest.
  13. Music and Danceto connect (notes) by a tie.

  1. to make a tie, bond, or connection.
  2. to make or be the same score;
    be equal in a contest:The teams tied for first place in the league.
  3. tie down, to limit one's activities;
    curtail:He finds that a desk job ties him down.
  4. tie in: 
    • to connect or be connected;
      be consistent:His story ties in with the facts.
    • Surveyingto establish the position of (a point not part of a survey control).
    • to make a tie-in, esp. in advertising or a sale:The paperback book is tied in with the movie of the same title.
  5. tie off, to tie a cord or suture around (a vein, blood vessel, or the like) so as to stop the flow within.
  6. tie one on, [Slang.]to get drunk:Charlie sure tied one on last night!
  7. tie the knot. See  knot 1 (def. 13).
  8. tie up: 
    • to fasten securely by tying.
    • to wrap;
    • to hinder;
    • to bring to a stop;
      make inactive.
    • to invest or place (money) in such a way as to render unavailable for other uses.
    • to place (property) under such conditions or restrictions as to prevent sale or alienation.
    • to moor a ship.
    • to engage or occupy completely:I can't see you now, I'm all tied up.

  1. that with which anything is tied.
  2. a cord, string, or the like, used for tying, fastening, binding, or wrapping something.
  3. Clothinga necktie.
  4. Clothinga low shoe fastened with a lace.
  5. Clothinga knot, esp. an ornamental one;
  6. anything that fastens, secures, or unites.
  7. a bond or connection, as of affection, kinship, mutual interest, or between two or more people, groups, nations, or the like:family ties; the ties between Britain and the U.S.
  8. a state of equality in the result of a contest, as in points scored, votes obtained, etc., among competitors:The game ended in a tie.
  9. a match or contest in which this occurs.
  10. any of various structural members, as beams or rods, for keeping two objects, as rafters or the haunches of an arch, from spreading or separating.
  11. Music and Dancea curved line connecting two notes on the same line or space to indicate that the sound is to be sustained for their joint value, not repeated.
  12. Rail TransportAlso called,[esp. Brit.,] sleeper. any of a number of closely spaced transverse beams, usually of wood, for holding the rails forming a track at the proper distance from each other and for transmitting train loads to the ballast and roadbed.
  13. Clothingbride2 (def. 1).
  14. [Survey.]a measurement made to determine the position of a survey station with respect to a reference mark or other isolated point.
  • bef. 900; (noun, nominal) Middle English te(i)gh cord, rope, Old English tēagh, tēgh, cognate with Old Norse taug rope; (verb, verbal) Middle English tien, Old English tīgan, derivative of the noun, nominal; compare Old Norse teygja to draw. See tug, tow1
    • 6.See corresponding entry in Unabridged unite, link, knit, yoke, lock.
    • 11.See corresponding entry in Unabridged obligate, constrain.
    • 23.See corresponding entry in Unabridged rope, band, ligature.
    • 24.See corresponding entry in Unabridged cravat.
    • 28.See corresponding entry in Unabridged See  bond. 
    • 1.See corresponding entry in Unabridged loose, loosen.

WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2017
ˈtie-ˌup,  n. [countable]
  1. a stopping or slowing of traffic, etc., due to an accident, storm, etc.

WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2017
tie-up  (tīup′),USA pronunciation n. 
  1. a temporary stoppage or slowing of business, traffic, telephone service, etc., as due to a strike, storm, or accident.
  2. the act or state of tying up or the state of being tied up.
  3. an involvement, connection, or entanglement:the tie-up between the two companies; his tie-up with the crime syndicate.
  4. a mooring place;
    place where a boat may be tied up.
  5. a cow barn with stalls.
  6. a stall allotted to each cow in such a barn.
  • noun, nominal use of verb, verbal phrase tie up 1705–15

Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::

tie up vb (adverb)
  1. (transitive) to attach or bind securely with or as if with string, rope, etc
  2. to moor (a vessel)
  3. (tr; often passive) to engage the attentions of
  4. (tr; often passive) to conclude (the organization of something)
  5. to come or bring to a complete standstill
  6. (transitive) to invest or commit (funds, etc) and so make unavailable for other uses
  7. (transitive) to subject (property) to conditions that prevent sale, alienation, or other action
n tie-up
  1. a link or connection
  2. chiefly US Canadian a standstill
  3. chiefly US Canadian
    an informal term for traffic jam

'tie up' also found in these entries:

Word of the day: joke | drape


Report an inappropriate ad.
Become a WordReference Supporter to view the site ad-free.