If you catch a person or animal, you capture them after chasing them, or by using a trap, net, or other device.
Police say they are confident of catching the gunman...
Where did you catch the fish?...
If you catch an object that is moving through the air, you seize it with your hands.
I jumped up to catch a ball and fell over.
If you catch a part of someone's body, you take or seize it with your hand, often in order to stop them going somewhere.
Liz caught his arm...
He knelt beside her and caught her hand in both of his...
If one thing catches another, it hits it accidentally or manages to hit it.
The stinging slap almost caught his face...
I may have caught him with my elbow but it was just an accident...
If something catches on or in an object or if an object catches something, it accidentally becomes attached to the object or stuck in it.
Her ankle caught on a root, and she almost lost her balance...
A man caught his foot in the lawnmower.
When you catch a bus, train, or plane, you get on it in order to travel somewhere.
We were in plenty of time for Anthony to catch the ferry...
He caught a taxi to Harrods.
If you catch someone doing something wrong, you see or find them doing it.
He caught a youth breaking into a car...
I don't want to catch you pushing yourself into the picture to get some personal publicity...
If you catch yourself doing something, especially something surprising, you suddenly become aware that you are doing it.
I caught myself feeling almost sorry for poor Mr Laurence.
If you catch something or catch a glimpse of it, you notice it or manage to see it briefly.
As she turned back she caught the puzzled look on her mother's face...
He caught a glimpse of the man's face in a shop window.
If you catch something that someone has said, you manage to hear it.
His ears caught a faint cry...
I do not believe I caught your name...
If you catch a TV or radio programme or an event, you manage to see or listen to it.
Bill turns on the radio to catch the local news...
The exhibition is on at Droitwich until May 24. You can also catch it at Leominster from June 5.
If you catch someone, you manage to contact or meet them to talk to them, especially when they are just about to go somewhere else.
I dialled Elizabeth's number thinking I might catch her before she left for work...
Hello, Dolph. Glad I caught you.
If something or someone catches you by surprise or at a bad time, you were not expecting them or do not feel able to deal with them.
She looked as if the photographer had caught her by surprise...
I'm sorry but I just cannot say anything. You've caught me at a bad time...
If something catches your attention or your eye, you notice it or become interested in it.
My shoes caught his attention...
A quick movement across the aisle caught his eye.
If someone or something catches a mood or an atmosphere, they successfully represent it or reflect it.
There's no doubt Mr Putin's speech caught the mood of most deputies.
If you are caught in a storm or other unpleasant situation, it happens when you cannot avoid its effects.
When he was fishing off the island he was caught in a storm and almost drowned...
Visitors to the area were caught between police and the rioters.
If you are caught between two alternatives or two people, you do not know which one to choose or follow.
The Jordanian leader is caught between both sides in the dispute...
She was caught between envy and admiration.
If you catch a cold or a disease, you become ill with it.
The more stress you are under, the more likely you are to catch a cold.
To catch liquids or small pieces that fall from somewhere means to collect them in a container.
The fish is laid out on a large serving plate to catch the juices.
...a specially designed breadboard with a tray to catch the crumbs.
If something catches the light or if the light catches it, it reflects the light and looks bright or shiny.
They saw the ship's guns, catching the light of the moon...
If the wind or water catches something, it carries or pushes it along.
A gust of wind caught the parachute.
A catch on a window, door, or container is a device that fastens it.
She fiddled with the catch of her bag...
Fit windows with safety locks or catches.
A catch is a hidden problem or difficulty in a plan or an offer that seems surprisingly good.
The catch is that you work for your supper, and the food and accommodation can be very basic...
'It's your money. You deserve it.' — 'What's the catch?'
When people have been fishing, their catch is the total number of fish that they have caught.
The catch included one fish over 18 pounds.
If you describe someone as a good catch, you mean that they have lots of good qualities and you think their partner or employer is very lucky to have found them.
I was so in love with him and all my friends said what a good catch he was.
Catch is a game in which children throw a ball to each other.
Catch is a game in which one child chases other children and tries to touch or catch one of them.
You can say things such as 'You wouldn't catch me doing that' to emphasize that you would never do a particular thing.
You won't catch me giving him a bad review!...
You wouldn't catch me in there, I can tell you.
If someone is caught with their pants down, something happens that they are not prepared for and that reveals something embarrassing or shocking about them. In British English, you can also say that they are caught with their trousers down .
It makes soldiers happy to know that somebody right at the top has been caught with his trousers down...
I think we caught them with their pants down. They're a bit confused.
1. a hidden drawback;"it sounds good but what's the catch?"
2. the quantity that was caught;"the catch was only 10 fish"
3. a person regarded as a good matrimonial prospect
4. anything that is caught (especially if it is worth catching);"he shared his catch with the others"
5. a break or check in the voice (usually a sign of strong emotion)
6. a restraint that checks the motion of something;"he used a book as a stop to hold the door open"
7. a fastener that fastens or locks a door or window
8. a cooperative game in which a ball is passed back and forth;"he played catch with his son in the backyard"
9. the act of catching an object with the hands;"Mays made the catch with his back to the plate""he made a grab for the ball before it landed""Martin's snatch at the bridle failed and the horse raced away""the infielder's snap and throw was a single motion"
10. the act of apprehending (especially apprehending a criminal);"the policeman on the beat got credit for the collar"
1. discover or come upon accidentally, suddenly, or unexpectedly; catch somebody doing something or in a certain state;"She caught her son eating candy""She was caught shoplifting"
2. perceive with the senses quickly, suddenly, or momentarily;"I caught the aroma of coffee""He caught the allusion in her glance""ears open to catch every sound""The dog picked up the scent""Catch a glimpse"
3. reach with a blow or hit in a particular spot;"the rock caught her in the back of the head""The blow got him in the back""The punch caught him in the stomach"
4. take hold of so as to seize or restrain or stop the motion of;"Catch the ball!""Grab the elevator door!"
5. succeed in catching or seizing, especially after a chase;"We finally got the suspect""Did you catch the thief?"
6. to hook or entangle;"One foot caught in the stirrup"
7. attract and fix;"His look caught her""She caught his eye""Catch the attention of the waiter"
8. capture as if by hunting, snaring, or trapping;"I caught a rabbit in the trap toady"
9. reach in time;"I have to catch a train at 7 o'clock"
10. get or regain something necessary, usually quickly or briefly;"Catch some sleep""catch one's breath"
11. catch up with and possibly overtake;"The Rolls Royce caught us near the exit ramp"
12. be struck or affected by;"catch fire""catch the mood"
13. check oneself during an action;"She managed to catch herself before telling her boss what was on her mind"
14. hear, usually without the knowledge of the speakers;"We overheard the conversation at the next table"
15. see or watch;"view a show on television""This program will be seen all over the world""view an exhibition""Catch a show on Broadway""see a movie"
16. cause to become accidentally or suddenly caught, ensnared, or entangled;"I caught the hem of my dress in the brambles"
17. detect a blunder or misstep;"The reporter tripped up the senator"
18. grasp with the mind or develop an undersatnding of;"did you catch that allusion?""We caught something of his theory in the lecture""don't catch your meaning""did you get it?""She didn't get the joke""I just don't get him"
19. contract;"did you catch a cold?"
20. start burning;"The fire caught"
21. perceive by hearing;"I didn't catch your name""She didn't get his name when they met the first time"
22. suffer from the receipt of;"She will catch hell for this behavior!"
23. attract; cause to be enamored;"She captured all the men's hearts"
24. apprehend and reproduce accurately;"She really caught the spirit of the place in her drawings""She got the mood just right in her photographs"
25. take in and retain;"We have a big barrel to catch the rainwater"
26. spread or be communicated;"The fashion did not catch"
27. be the catcher;"Who is catching?"
28. become aware of;"he caught her staring out the window"
29. delay or hold up; prevent from proceeding on schedule or as planned;"I was caught in traffic and missed the meeting"