Definition of ad lib in English:

ad lib

See synonyms for ad lib

Translate ad lib into Spanish

adverb

  • 1Without previous preparation.

    • ‘I spoke ad lib’
    impromptu, extempore, without preparation, without rehearsal, extemporaneously, spontaneously, offhand
    impromptu, extempore, extemporaneous, extemporary, improvised, improvisational, improvisatory, improvisatorial, unprepared, unarranged, unplanned, unrehearsed, unscripted, unpremeditated, spontaneous, on-the-spot
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1Music (especially as a direction) with free rhythm and expression.
      • ‘he's given the task of interrupting the orchestra, playing ad lib and out of time’
  • 2As much and as often as desired.

    • ‘the price includes meals and drinks ad lib’

Pronunciation

ad lib

/ˌad ˈlib/ /ˌæd ˈlɪb/

adjective

  • 1Spoken or performed without previous preparation.

    • ‘an ad-lib commentary’
    1. 1.1Music Performed with free rhythm and expression.
      • ‘the last track is an ad lib untitled jam by the whole bunch’
  • 2Occurring, used, or distributed as often as necessary or desired.

    • ‘the pigs are fed on an ad-lib basis’

Pronunciation

ad lib

/ˌad ˈlib/ /ˌæd ˈlɪb/

verbverb ad-libs, verb ad-libbing, verb ad-libbed

(also ad-lib)
no object
  • Speak or perform in public without previously preparing one's words.

    ‘Charles had to ad-lib because he'd forgotten his script’
    • ‘He was doing more ad-libbing and improvisation than me.’
    • ‘He didn't look like he was being formally interviewed - he looked more like he was inadvisedly ad-libbing at large with an apparently friendly journalist, while the camera just happened to be rolling.’
    • ‘He was cold, he was bad at ad-libbing and he was very bad at setting up the panelists to be funny.’
    • ‘Although his drum version of Bring Me To Life was slightly different and it was obvious he was ad-libbing most of it, he managed to stumble his way though.’
    • ‘He is forever quoting the ‘Good Book’, comically ad-libbing when the lines don't suit his purpose.’
    • ‘This gives him ample time to indulge in ad-libbing, a pastime of which he seems inordinately fond.’
    • ‘He was confident, quick, very good at ad-libbing and feeding off the audience.’
    • ‘Howie didn't have an act but he got up there, almost on a dare, and ad-libbed what turned out to be the funniest set of the evening.’
    • ‘We did 11 comedy albums, and I think 10 were live, and they were all ad-libbed.’
    • ‘I thought his hilarious banter was all ad-libbed.’
    • ‘As a result, the castmembers themselves seem to have ad-libbed most of the week, based on what I imagine was a rough sketch of a few plot points.’
    • ‘They allowed me to experiment, they allowed me to take risks, which meant I ad-libbed freely and largely amusingly.’
    • ‘Our star couldn't remember his lines so he ad-libbed all the way through the show.’
    • ‘Midway, Topher started ad-libbing along on his guitar.’
    • ‘Apparently the mental script she was following didn't allow for ad-libbing, for she continued as if he hadn't interrupted.’
    • ‘As Bilko, Silvers was never less than sensational, delivering his lines with speed and guile and marvellously ad-libbing when the situation required it.’
    • ‘After taking the oath of office, George Washington ad-libbed the final words, ‘So help me God.’’
    • ‘Díaz, who was trying to woo a girl, ad-libbed his own lyrics, which he'd sing to introduce his radio show in the 1940s.’
    • ‘At one point, they ad-libbed a scene based on their own friendship.’
    • ‘I did some ad-libbed material of a similar bent at the gig I did in Brighton last night.’
    improvise, extemporize, speak impromptu, make it up as one goes along, think on one's feet, take it as it comes
    View synonyms

Pronunciation

ad lib

/ˌad ˈlib/ /ˌæd ˈlɪb/

noun

  • A remark or speech made without previous preparation.

    • ‘he came up with an apt ad lib’

Pronunciation

ad lib

/ˌad ˈlib/ /ˌæd ˈlɪb/

Origin

Mid 18th century (as an adverb): abbreviation of ad libitum.