From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary Englishgapgap /ɡæp/ ●●● S2 W2 noun [countable] 1 a spaceSPACE/GAP a space between two objects or two parts of an object, especially because something is missinggap in The neighbors’ dog got in through a gap in the hedge. a gap in the trafficgap between the gap between the two rows of seats► see thesaurus at hole2 differenceDIFFERENT a big difference between two situations, amounts, groups of people etc → gulfgap between the widening gap between the rich and the poor → generation gap3 something missingCOMPLETE something missing that stops something else from being good or completegap in There are huge gaps in my knowledge of history. Frank’s death has left a big gap in my life.fill/plug the gap He filled the gap left by Hirst’s retirement.4 in timeHAPPEN a period of time when nothing is happening, that exists between two other periods of time when something is happeninggap in an awkward gap in the conversationgap between The gaps between his visits got longer and longer. → gap year5 in a mountainDNSG a low place between two higher parts of a mountain6 → gap in the marketCOLLOCATIONS – Meaning 2: a big difference between two situations, amounts, groups of people etcADJECTIVES/NOUN + gapa big/large/wide gapThere’s a big gap between the two test scores.a huge/substantial etc gapA huge gap exists between the life styles of the rich and the poor.a narrow gapThere’s only a narrow gap between the two candidates in the polls.a yawning gap (=a very big difference)There’s a yawning gap between the earnings of men and women.a growing/widening gapThere is a widening gap in the academic performance of boys and girls.an unbridgeable gap (=a gap that cannot be closed)He felt that there was an unbridgeable gap between the negotiating positions of the two sides.a trade gap (=the difference between the amount a country imports and exports)Britain’s trade gap almost doubled last month.the gender gap (=the difference between men and women)The gender gap was visible in the way men and women voted during the presidential elections.the generation gap (=the difference in attitudes, tastes etc between older and younger people)Taste in music is a good indicator of the generation gap.an age gap (=a difference in age between two people)Despite the age gap, they became good friends.a cultural gap (=a difference between cultures)There is a cultural gap between Europe and America on this subject.verbsbridge/close/narrow the gap (=reduce the amount or importance of a difference)The book aims to bridge the gap between theory and practice.The policies are designed to close the gap between rich and poor.the gap narrowsPolls show the gap between the two candidates has narrowed.widen the gapTechnology has widened the gap between people with and without computer skills.the gap widensThe gap is widening between the incomes of the rich and the less well-off.a gap existsA cultural gap exists between the older and the younger generations.
Examples from the Corpusgap• Sharon has a gap between her two front teeth.• The gate was locked but we managed to get through a gap in the fence.• Freddie managed to squeeze through a gap in the fence and run away.• The age gap between us didn't seem to matter until we decided to have children.• It ain't a door or nothing - it's just a big gap in the wall.• Melianthus is a good plant for filling in gaps in flower borders.• Short gaps are thus more probable than long ones.• The new interest in growth is sure to widen that gap.• These activities bridge the gap in comprehension and familiarity that the interface creates.• Later, electrically powered calculators and analog computers bridged the gap to the first primitive digital computers.• The greater the amount of planning control, the greater did the gap become.• Melanie's dentist says that as she gets older the gap between her two front teeth will disappear.• The gap between rich and poor is wider in the South than in the rest of the country.• The light was coming through a tiny gap under the door.• an uncomfortable gap in the conversation• There's a ten-year gap between Kay's two children.gap in• There are huge gaps in my knowledge of history.• There was an 18 minute gap in the tape recordings.• Inner-city hospitals are being crippled by a serious gap in medical technology.fill/plug the gap• Kaufman said the Chargers' defensive front did a good job of penetrating the backfield and filling the gaps in the line.• Such sources of learning help fill the gaps for employees in the new leaner organization who have fewer co-workers in their field.• Will my right hon. Friend agree to talk to the museum to ascertain whether he can guide it in filling the gap?• A growing proportion of companies now expect to hire workers from abroad to fill the gaps.• This has allowed short term seated events to fill the gaps in the programme between major exhibitions.• Sales of gold from central banks were needed to fill the gap, Gold Fields said.• To fill the gap he roared with laughter at his own witty fashion of dealing with ethics.• Right-back Andy Hill is ruled out by a stomach strain and veteran Ray Ranson will fill the gap.Gap, TheThe GapGap, The trademark a US clothes company with stores all over the world. The Gap sells informal clothes for men, women, and children, which are fashionable but not very expensive.From Longman Business Dictionarygapgap /gæp/ noun [countable]1gap in the marketMARKETING an opportunity to develop and sell a particular product or service because no other company is doing this yetThe sales director believes there is a gap in the market for small jets.The mail-order company is aiming to fill the gap in the market with a range of swimwear for older people.2ECONOMICSa difference between two situations, amounts, groups of people etcBrazil had a trade gap (=difference in value of what a country buys from abroad and what it sells) of $3.16 billion last year.gap betweenthe gap between the earnings of manual and non-manual workers3COMMERCEMARKETINGsomething that is missing that stops something else from being completegap inThe computer manufacturer is trying to fill a gap in its product line by buying an Atlanta software firm for $65 million.Origin gap (1300-1400) Old Norse “hole, deep narrow valley”