Headway Word of the Week

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When it's a noun, a tip is

  • the narrow end of a long, thin thing
    the tip of your finger.
    the tip of a stick.
    the western tip of the peninsula.
  • a small amount of money that you give a waiter or taxi driver
    He left the waiter a generous tip.
  • a useful suggestion
    I'll give you a tip. Don't waste your money on that.
  • a place where you throw rubbish
    Could you take these old carpets to the rubbish tip?

When it's a verb, to tip means

  • to move something from a vertical position, or from one place to another
    The vase tipped over.
    The dog tipped its head to one side.
    The students keep tipping their chairs back. It's dangerous.
    He tipped the contents of the box onto the floor.
  • to leave money for a waiter or taxi driver
    I always tip people when they provide good service.
  • to say who you think will win or be successful
    I tip John for the job. He has the most experience.
Check out phrasal verbs
  • tip off
    ( = give a warning)
    The thieves escaped because somebody tipped them off.
  • tip over
    The baby tipped over her juice.
  • tip up
    When fat Uncle Frank sat on the edge of the table, it tipped up.
Check out expressions
  • the tip of the iceberg
    ( = only a small part of the problem)
    The crime figures are only the tip of the iceberg. The true situation is much worse.
  • on the tip of your tongue
    ( = you know it, but can't quite remember it)
    I can't remember his name, but it's on the tip of my tongue. I'll remember it in a minute.
  • to tip the balance in your favour
    ( = give you a slight advantage)
    Both candidates are good, but Jill's experience tips the balance in her favour. We'll offer her the job.
  • to tip somebody over the edge
    ( = they can't manage a situation anymore)
    Jiml was able to deal with losing his house and job, but when his wife left him it tipped him over the edge. He had a nervous breakdown.
Check out related words
  • hint
  • spill
  • pour
  • reward
  • peak

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