C c


    • US Pronunciation
    • US IPA
    • UK Pronunciation
    • UK IPA
    • [noun, adjective, verb 15–17, 21, 22 kon-trakt; verb kuh n-trakt]
    • /noun, adjective, verb 15–17, 21, 22 ˈkɒn trækt; verb kənˈtrækt/
    • /ˈkɒntrækt/
    • US Pronunciation
    • US IPA
    • [noun, adjective, verb 15–17, 21, 22 kon-trakt; verb kuh n-trakt]
    • /noun, adjective, verb 15–17, 21, 22 ˈkɒn trækt; verb kənˈtrækt/

Definitions of contract word

  • countable noun contract A contract is a legal agreement, usually between two companies or between an employer and employee, which involves doing work for a stated sum of money. 3
  • verb contract If you contract with someone to do something, you legally agree to do it for them or for them to do it for you. 3
  • verb contract When something contracts or when something contracts it, it becomes smaller or shorter. 3
  • verb contract When something such as an economy or market contracts, it becomes smaller. 3
  • verb contract If you contract a serious illness, you become ill with it. 3
  • verb contract If you contract a marriage, alliance, or other relationship with someone, you arrange to have that relationship with them. 3

Information block about the term

Origin of contract

First appearance:

before 1275
One of the 13% oldest English words
1275-1325; (noun) Middle English (< Anglo-French) < Latin contractus undertaking a transaction, agreement, equivalent to contrac-, variant stem of contrahere to draw in, bring together, enter into an agreement (con- con- + trahere to drag, pull; cf. traction) + -tus suffix of v. action; (v.) < Latin contractus, past participle of contrahere

Historical Comparancy

Parts of speech for Contract


contract popularity

A common word. It’s meaning is known to most children of preschool age. About 97% of English native speakers know the meaning and use the word.
Most Europeans know this English word. The frequency of it’s usage is somewhere between "mom" and "screwdriver".

contract usage trend in Literature

This diagram is provided by Google Ngram Viewer

Synonyms for contract

noun contract

  • pact — an agreement, covenant, or compact: We made a pact not to argue any more.
  • pledge — a solemn promise or agreement to do or refrain from doing something: a pledge of aid; a pledge not to wage war.
  • bargain — Something that is a bargain is good value for money, usually because it has been sold at a lower price than normal.
  • commitment — Commitment is a strong belief in an idea or system.
  • arrangement — Arrangements are plans and preparations which you make so that something will happen or be possible.

verb contract

  • decline — If something declines, it becomes less in quantity, importance, or strength.
  • consume — If you consume something, you eat or drink it.
  • reduce — to bring down to a smaller extent, size, amount, number, etc.: to reduce one's weight by 10 pounds.
  • decrease — When something decreases or when you decrease it, it becomes less in quantity, size, or intensity.
  • narrow — of little breadth or width; not broad or wide; not as wide as usual or expected: a narrow path.

Antonyms for contract

noun contract

  • disagreement — the act, state, or fact of disagreeing.
  • misunderstanding — failure to understand correctly; mistake as to meaning or intent.

verb contract

  • increase — to make greater, as in number, size, strength, or quality; augment; add to: to increase taxes.
  • grow — to increase by natural development, as any living organism or part by assimilation of nutriment; increase in size or substance.
  • amplify — If you amplify a sound, you make it louder, usually by using electronic equipment.
  • lengthen — to make longer; make greater in length.
  • loosen — to unfasten or undo, as a bond or fetter.

Top questions with contract

  • how do you contract hepatitis c?
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See also

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