Skip to main content
Select Source:

about

a·bout / əˈbout/ • prep. 1. on the subject of; concerning: I was thinking about you. ∎  so as to affect: there's nothing we can do about it. ∎  (be about) be involved or to do with; have the intention of: it's all about having fun. 2. used to indicate movement within a particular area: she looked about the room. 3. used to express location in a particular place: rugs strewn about the hall. ∎  used to describe a quality apparent in a person: there was a look about her that said everything. • adv. 1. used to indicate movement in an area: men were floundering about. 2. used to express location in a particular place: there was a lot of flu about. 3. (used with a number or quantity) approximately: he's about 35. PHRASES: about to do something intending to do something or close to doing something very soon: the ceremony was about to begin. be not about to do something be unwilling to do something: he is not about to step down. how about see how1 . just about see just. up and about see up. what about see what.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"about." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Feb. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"about." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. (February 20, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/about-0

"about." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Retrieved February 20, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/about-0

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.

about

about adv. round, round the outside OE.; afoot, astir; †(with inf.) busy or engaged in XIII; going to XVI; prep. in corr. senses; (also) near, approximating to XII; concerning XIII. OE. onbūtan, abūtan, ME. abuten (XII–XIII), aboute; f. ON, A-1 + būtan outside (of); see BUT.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"about." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Feb. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"about." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology. . Encyclopedia.com. (February 20, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/about-1

"about." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology. . Retrieved February 20, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/about-1

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.

about

aboutabout, bout, clout, devout, doubt, down-and-out, drought, flout, gout, grout, knout, Kraut, lout, mahout, misdoubt, nowt, out, out-and-out, owt, pout, Prout, right about, rout, scout, shout, snout, spout, sprout, stout, thereabout, thereout, throughout, timeout, tout, trout, way-out, without •layout, payout •buyout • blowout • layabout •gadabout • roundabout • knockabout •walkabout • runabout • turnabout •hereabout • roustabout •handout, standout •readout • hideout • dugout • blackout •checkout •breakout, stakeout, takeout •strikeout •knockout, lockout •walkout •cookout, lookout •workout • sell-out • fallout • pull-out •umlaut • litter lout • spin-out •burnout, turnout •hangout • wipeout •copout, dropout •waterspout • beansprout • clearout •sauerkraut • washout • printout •white-out • shoot-out •cut-out, shut-out

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"about." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Feb. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"about." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. (February 20, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/about

"about." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Retrieved February 20, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/about

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.