Definition of dinner in English:



  • 1The main meal of the day, taken either around midday or in the evening.

    • ‘This includes luxury coach, motel accommodation, three breakfasts and dinners plus one lunch.’
    • ‘They receive subsidised breakfast, lunch and dinners if they have to work late.’
    • ‘You celebrate cozy dinners and candlelight evenings with family and loved ones.’
    • ‘The zucchini is starting to produce and summer salads are a staple of evening dinners.’
    • ‘She made certain she had the room key and headed for the main building where she could have a late dinner.’
    • ‘The research also puts beyond doubt the notion that the sit-down family Sunday dinner is dying out.’
    • ‘Your mum would have a nice dinner cooked for you.’
    • ‘The holidays bring with them thoughts of carving and serving delicious turkey dinners to your family and friends.’
    • ‘A candlelit dinner at the beachfront restaurant is sure to provide the perfect end to the day.’
    • ‘A delicious dinner was served along the poolside and games were played after that.’
    • ‘When Mason goes out, he treats his friends to a steak dinner at an attractive restaurant.’
    • ‘We've just finished dinner at an Indian restaurant on Pico, not far from my apartment.’
    • ‘Or the bathtub wasn't cleaned, dinner not ready by the time he got home.’
    • ‘"You need to come over for dinner sometime, " she assured him.’
    • ‘"Dad, I think we should invite him over for dinner sometime soon.’
    • ‘I have plans to go into central London tomorrow evening for dinner with friends.’
    • ‘Going out to dinner with friends is fine; everyone needs a study break.’
    • ‘One day after receiving her pay, Chen went for dinner with her friends.’
    • ‘I was going to meet Jimmy for dinner on his last night in town.’
    • ‘I was a bit stuck for what to get for dinner on Monday night.’
    evening meal, supper, main meal, repast
    evening meal, supper, main meal, repast
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1A formal evening meal, typically one in honour of a person or event.
      • ‘The dining hall is usually reserved for the weekly formal dinners and breakfast buffets.’
      • ‘Our team provides the best quality food to all sizes of events, from corporate dinners to weddings.’
      • ‘Bacon had to carry on with the reception and dinners in his honour.’
      • ‘They have many wine-lectures, gala dinners, special events and occasional offers.’
      • ‘The new branch will be holding a range of social events including a special dinner.’
      • ‘After a formal dinner including haggis the mayor talked about his hopes for the town.’
      • ‘Some conferences have scheduled social events or dinners one of the nights of the conference.’
      • ‘Fashion people love to celebrate though, so we often have to go to these dinners or events.’
      • ‘The idea of holding a series of dinners, similar to the first event, was agreed upon.’
      • ‘In other words, he was responsible for formal receptions - known as levees - and dinners.’
      • ‘They do fund-raising dinners, put their names to all sorts of events and this month have done a couple of books.’
      • ‘She met country women who could cope with high society dinners and also help on the farm and feed shearers.’
      • ‘At dinners given by Napoleon III the most honoured guests had aluminium cutlery; the others got gold or silver.’
      • ‘The function is the annual fundraising gala dinner and dance that took off with great success last year.’
      • ‘Kaylee's mother has organised a fund-raising gala dinner at the end of the month for the organ donor campaign.’
      • ‘Over 100 people attended its celebratory dinner held on Thursday.’
      • ‘He was speaking at a fundraising dinner dance for the Dominican Convent school for girls at Savoy Hotel in Ndola.’
      • ‘On Monday April 2, Amor Restaurant held its 7th anniversary charity dinner, which was a roaring success.’
      • ‘The magnificent surroundings of Ripon Cathedral will form the backdrop to a black-tie gourmet dinner in September for 220 guests.’
      • ‘But Grace looked like a goddess for Judy's engagement dinner on Friday night.’
      supper, main meal, repast
      supper, main meal, repast
      View synonyms


    more — than someone has had hot dinners
    British informal
    • Used to emphasize someone's wide experience of a specified activity or phenomenon.

      ‘he's seen more battles than you've had hot dinners’
      • ‘‘They've put out more leaflets than you've had hot dinners,’ she says.’
      • ‘They've driven through the place more times than you've had hot dinners and no amount of redirection is going to stop them.’
      • ‘Kid, I've travelled this road more times than you've had hot dinners.’
    done like (a) dinner
    Australian, New Zealand, Canadian informal
    • Utterly defeated or outwitted.

      • ‘If Prime Minist er Chretien called a snap election during that period, Mr. Morrison warned, the UA could be ‘done like dinner.’’
      • ‘We shouldn't be going to court to get done like a dinner,’ she said.’
      • ‘No authority up front, line-outs a continuing disaster, done like a dinner at the breakdowns, no energy, no spark, no cohesion, no composure… no bloody team.’
      • ‘That was a speech made by the Minister of Justice - maybe for just a few days more - who was done like a dinner on Morning Report this morning by the Leader of the Opposition.’


Middle English from Old French disner (infinitive used as a noun: see dine).