(noun, adjective, verb)


1. (not comparable) Foremost.

- The contestants are all tied; no one has the lead position.


1. an advantage held by a competitor in a race

- he took the lead at the last turn

Definition categories: attribute, advantage, vantage

2. a soft heavy toxic malleable metallic element; bluish white when freshly cut but tarnishes readily to dull grey

- the children were playing with lead soldiers

Definition categories: substance, metal

3. evidence pointing to a possible solution

- the police are following a promising lead

Similar word(s): track, trail

Definition categories: thought, evidence, grounds

4. a position of being the initiator of something and an example that others will follow (especially in the phrase `take the lead')

- he takes the lead in any group

- we were just waiting for someone to take the lead

- they didn't follow our lead

Definition categories: act, leadership, leading

5. the angle between the direction a gun is aimed and the position of a moving target (correcting for the flight time of the missile)

Definition categories: shape, angle

6. the introductory section of a story

- it was an amusing lead-in to a very serious matter

Similar word(s): lede

Definition categories: communication, section, subdivision

7. (sports) the score by which a team or individual is winning

Definition categories: quantity, score

8. an actor who plays a principal role

Similar word(s): principal, star

Definition categories: person, actor, histrion, player, thespian

9. (baseball) the position taken by a base runner preparing to advance to the next base

- he took a long lead off first

Definition categories: location, place, position

10. an indication of potential opportunity

- a good lead for a job

Similar word(s): hint, steer, tip, wind

Definition categories: communication, counsel, counseling, counselling, direction, guidance

11. a news story of major importance

Definition categories: communication

12. the timing of ignition relative to the position of the piston in an internal-combustion engine

Definition categories: attribute, timing

13. restraint consisting of a rope (or light chain) used to restrain an animal

Similar word(s): leash, tether

Definition categories: man–made, constraint, restraint

14. thin strip of metal used to separate lines of type in printing

Similar word(s): leading

Definition categories: man–made, slip, strip

15. mixture of graphite with clay in different degrees of hardness; the marking substance in a pencil

Definition categories: man–made, graphite, plumbago

16. a jumper that consists of a short piece of wire

- it was a tangle of jumper cables and clip leads

Definition categories: man–made, jumper, wire

17. the playing of a card to start a trick in bridge

- the lead was in the dummy

Definition categories: act, play, turn

Sentences with lead as a noun:

- This copy has too much lead; I prefer less space between the lines.

- They pumped him full of lead.

- The runner took his lead from first.

- The investigation stalled when all leads turned out to be dead ends.

- Joe is a great addition to our sales team, he has numerous leads in the paper industry.


1. take somebody somewhere

- We lead him to our chief

Similar word(s): conduct, direct, guide, take

Definition categories: motion

2. produce as a result or residue

Similar word(s): leave, result

Definition categories: stative, produce

3. tend to or result in

- This remark lead to further arguments among the guests

Definition categories: stative, lead, leave, result

4. travel in front of; go in advance of others

Similar word(s): head

Definition categories: motion, lead, precede

5. cause to undertake a certain action

Definition categories: communication, cause, get, have, induce, make, stimulate

6. stretch out over a distance, space, time, or scope; run or extend between two points or beyond a certain point

Similar word(s): extend, go, pass, run

Definition categories: stative, be

7. be in charge of

Similar word(s): head

Definition categories: social, direct

8. be ahead of others; be the first

Similar word(s): top

Definition categories: stative

9. be conducive to

- The use of computers in the classroom lead to better writing

Similar word(s): conduce, contribute

Definition categories: social, advance, boost, encourage, further, promote

10. lead, as in the performance of a composition

Similar word(s): conduct, direct

Definition categories: creation, do, execute, perform

11. lead, extend, or afford access

Similar word(s): go

Definition categories: stative, be

12. move ahead (of others) in time or space

Similar word(s): precede

Definition categories: motion, go, locomote, move, travel

13. cause something to pass or lead somewhere

Similar word(s): run

Definition categories: stative, pass

14. preside over

Similar word(s): chair, moderate

Definition categories: communication, discuss

Sentences with lead as a verb:

- to lead a page; leaded matter

- a father leads a child;  a jockey leads a horse with a halter;  a dog leads a blind man

- The evidence leads me to believe he is guilty.

- the big sloop led the fleet of yachts;  the Guards led the attack;  Demosthenes leads the orators of all ages

- The batter always leads off base.

- the path leads to the mill;  gambling leads to other vices