belt /bɛlt/

b

I. noun

1. a strip of leather or other material worn, typically round the waist, to support or hold in clothes or to carry weapons.

he tightened his leather belt an extra notch.
a sword belt.
[as modifier]
a belt buckle.
2. short for seat belt.
3. a belt worn as a sign of rank or achievement

he was awarded the victor’s belt.
4. a belt of a specified colour, marking the attainment of a particular level in judo, karate, or similar sports.

[as modifier]

brown-belt level.
5. a person who is qualified to wear a belt of a specified colour in judo, karate, etc.

Shaun became a brown belt in judo.
6. ( the belt) the punishment of being struck with a belt.

be quiet, or it’s the belt.
7. a strip of material used in various technical applications, in particular:
8. a continuous band of material used in machinery for transferring motion from one wheel to another.

a great wheel driven by a leather belt.
9. a conveyor belt.
10. a flexible strip carrying machine-gun cartridges.
11. a strip or encircling area that is different in nature or composition from its surroundings

the asteroid belt
a belt of trees.
12.
‹informal› a heavy blow

she administered a good belt with her stick.
II. verb

1. [with obj. and adverbial] fasten with a belt

she belted her raincoat firmly.
2. [no obj., with adverbial] be fastened with a belt

the jacket belts at the waist.
3. [with obj.] secure or attach with a belt

he was securely belted into the passenger seat.
4. [with obj.] beat or strike (someone), especially with a belt as a punishment

I was belted and sent to my room.
5. hit (something) hard

he belted the ball downfield.
6. [no obj., with adverbial of direction]
‹informal› rush or dash in a specified direction

he belted out of the side door.
7. (of rain) fall hard

the rain belted down on the tin roof.
III. phrases

1. below the belt
disregarding the rules; unfair.

she said one of them had to work; Eddie thought that was below the belt.
[from the notion of an unfair and illegal blow in boxing.]
2. belt and braces

(Brit.) (of a policy or action) providing double security, by using two means to the same end.

the envelope was sealed with tape and staples, a real belt and braces job.
[from the literal belt and braces for holding up a pair of loose trousers.]
3. tighten one’s belt
cut one’s expenditure; live more frugally.

she said the poor must tighten their belts.
4. under one’s belt
a. safely or satisfactorily achieved, experienced, or acquired

he now has almost a year as minister under his belt.
b. (of food or drink) consumed

Gus already had a large brandy under his belt.
IV. phrasal verbs

1. belt something out
sing or play a song loudly and forcefully.

she belted out classics for half an hour.
2. belt up
‹Brit. informal›
a. [usu. in imperative] be quiet.

for God’s sake, belt up.
b. put on a seat belt.

all youngsters will have to belt up in cars, vans, and lorries.
– origin Old English, of Germanic origin, from Latin balteus ‘girdle’.

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