From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary Englishleadlead1 /liːd/ ●●● S1 W1 verb (past tense and past participle led /led/) 1 take somebody somewhere [intransitive, transitive usually + adverb/preposition]FIRST to take someone somewhere by going in front of them while they follow, or by pulling them gentlylead somebody to/into etc something A nurse took her arm and led her to a chair. The horses were led to safety.lead somebody away/down etc She was led away from the courtroom in tears. The manager led the way through the office.► see thesaurus at take2 go in front [intransitive, transitive] to go in front of a line of people or vehicles A firetruck was leading the parade.3 be in charge [intransitive, transitive]IN CHARGE OF to be in charge of an organization, country, or team, or a group of people who are trying to do something He has led the party for over twenty years. Some people say she is too old to lead the country (=be in charge of its government). Beckham led his team to victory.lead an investigation/inquiry/campaign The investigation will be led by Inspector Scarfe. They are leading a campaign to warn teenagers about the dangers of drug abuse.lead a revolt/rebellion/coup etc The rebellion was led by the King’s brother.lead an attack/assault Nelson preferred to lead the attack himself from the front. a man who was born to lead a communist-led strike4 cause something to happen [intransitive, transitive]CAUSE to cause something to happen or cause someone to do somethinglead to the events that led to the start of the First World War A degree in English could lead to a career in journalism.lead somebody into something Her trusting nature often led her into trouble.lead somebody to do something What led him to kill his wife?lead to somebody doing something His actions could lead to him losing his job.5 cause somebody to believe something [transitive] to make someone believe something, especially something that is not truelead somebody to believe/expect/understand something He had led everyone to believe that his family was very wealthy. The hotel was terrible, and not at all what we had been led to expect. Our research led us to the conclusion that the present system is unfair. 6 influence [transitive] to influence someone to make them do something that is wronglead somebody into something His brother led him into a life of crime. He’s not a bad boy. He’s just easily led (=it is easy for other people to persuade him to do things that he should not do).7 be more successful [transitive]BEST to be more successful than other people, companies, or countries in a particular activitylead the world/market/pack/field US companies lead the world in biotechnology.lead the way (=be the first to do something, and show other people how to do it) The Swedes have led the way in data protection. → leading1(1)8 be winning [intransitive, transitive]WIN to be winning a game, competition etc OPP lose At half-time, Brazil led 1–0. With 15 laps to go, Schumacher led the race. The polls showed Obama leading Romney by 3 percent.lead by ten points/two goals etc Nadal was leading by two sets.9 path/door etc [intransitive, transitive always + adverb/preposition]JOIN something TOGETHER used to say where a path, wire etc goes or what place is on the other side of a doorlead to/towards The path led down to a small lake.lead from/out of the major artery leading from the heartlead into the door leading into the hallwaylead somebody to/into something The riverside path leads visitors to a small chapel.10 lifeLIFE [transitive] if you lead a particular kind of life, that is what your life is likelead a normal/quiet/busy etc life If the operation succeeds, Carly will be able to lead a normal life. He has led a charmed life (=been very fortunate).lead a life of luxury/poverty etclead the life of a ... She now leads the life of a recluse.lead a double life (=deceive people by keeping different parts of your life separate and not letting anyone know the whole truth) Joe had been leading a double life, seeing an ex-model while his wife believed he was on business. They lead a nomadic existence.11 discussion etc [transitive always + adverb/preposition] to control the way a discussion, conversation etc develops I tried to lead the conversation back to the subject of money. 12 → lead somebody up the garden path13 → lead somebody astray14 → lead nowhere/not lead anywhere15 → lead by example16 → lead somebody by the nose17 → this/that leads (me) to something18 → somebody has their own life to lead19 → lead somebody a merry old dance/a right old dance20 → market-led/export-led etc21 → lead the eye22 card game [intransitive, transitive]DGC to play a particular card as your first card in one part of a card gameTHESAURUSlead to take a person or animal somewhere by going in front of them while they follow, or by pulling them gentlyRachel led Jo into the kitchen.She was leading a horse, which seemed to have a bad leg.take to take someone somewhere with you when you have the transport, know the way, are paying etcI took her to see a film.Matt’s taking me in his car.guide to take someone through or to a place you know, showing them the wayAli guided us through the streets to his house on the edge of the town.show to take someone to a place such as a table in a restaurant or a hotel room and leave them thereA waitress showed us to our table.We were shown to our seats near the front of the theatre.point to show someone which direction to go using your hand or a signThe sign back there pointed this way.escort to take someone somewhere, protecting them, guarding them, or showing them the wayHe was escorted from the court by police.The president’s car will be escorted by a military convoy.usher to show someone the way to a room or building nearby, usually as part of your jobHis housekeeper ushered us into the living room.shepherd to carefully take someone somewhere – used especially about a group of peopleThe police shepherded thousands of people to safety in the cathedral.direct formal to tell someone where to go or how to get somewhereHe directed us to a café a few blocks away.Can you direct me to the station? → lead off → lead somebody on → lead on to something → lead with something → lead up to something→ See Verb table
Examples from the Corpuslead• UN-led hostage negotiations• With two minutes to play, the Lakers are still leading.• Dr Jenkins leads a team of researchers at the Plant Institute.• The government, led by conservatives, has been unwilling to join the talks.• A group of 80 planes, led by Lieutenant Commander Egusha, was on its way to attack.• For many years, India's Congress Party was led by Mrs Indira Gandhi.• The drug raid was led by top officers.• Kato leads Cal in interceptions with three.• The police officer took her arm and led her gently away.• Juan led her slowly around the dance floor.• He led Julia through the house to his study.• Debbie always leads the conversation back around to herself.• Jaruzelski led the country's Communist regime for nine years.• 67% of voters said they would not trust him to lead the country.• Who is leading the investigation?• The high school band is leading the parade.• In silence, Roland led the way back to the car.• He led the way, his slim hips in the tight fitting pants snaking gracefully between the tables.• She opened the door, thinking it led to a bedroom.• One unexcused absence can lead to a ninety-day suspension of benefits; four unexcused absences can cause expulsion from welfare entirely.• This led to the second major set of issues, operation and maintenance at the local level.• He was killed in the assault soon after, but the information he had gained as a scout led to victory.• Our guide seemed to be leading us towards a wooded area in the distance.led to safety• Five people were rescued from their burning flat and 30 others were led to safety after thick smoke spread through the building.• The school's world-famous Lippizaner horses were led to safety in a park.lead the country• Recent reports have shown the North leads the country in provision of nursery places.• Mr. Shersby Is my hon. Friend aware that Hillingdon is leading the country in recognising parents' wishes?• Will you be leading the country into the next election.• Mr Dos Santos, an almost reclusive figure who has led the country since 1979, gave no reason for his decision.• Nyamwisi Movingi had resigned from this post on March 22, accusing the government of leading the country to disaster. lead to• That led to a breakup with his sweetheart, who could not understand what he candidly admitted was a thirst for glory.• Blaming often leads to complete breakdown in family communications.• And have your interactions with these people led to greater professional and personal fulfillment for all parties?• Between 1990 and 1992, there were more than 1,000 mergers in that industry-all of which led to job losses.• The mountains also prove to be a tourist attraction as some of the mountains experience alpine conditions which leads to ski resorts.• The proposal for a Severn barrage has also led to some public debate, chiefly on environment issues.• Yet this interventionism has not led to the creation of anything approaching an Executive Office.• The combination of all these factors led to the tragedy on pad 34.lead somebody to believe/expect/understand something• He'd stuck his neck out all right, but not as much as he'd led Holman to believe.• If something or some one is deliberately hidden from us what does this lead us to expect?• She did not appear from her expression as uncaring of this interruption as the maid would have led Lois to believe.• She was older than first glance had led Christina to believe.• The room was not as grand as the corridor had led them to expect, but it was of reasonable size.• There is no tangible information that would lead anyone to believe, in my view, that Sen.• Contrary to what some Democrats would lead you to believe, U. S. Sen.easily led• He is resistant to change, gullible and easily led.• Nervous, fidgety, changeable in mood, easily led.• Poor Col. He wasn't a bad boy, just easily led.• The talented people who make up Great Groups are not easily led.• It may sometimes make them seem indecisive and easily led, but it also bestows qualities of sensitivity, sympathy and empathy.• Often clients of licensed dealers who were genuinely interested in options would be easily led into warrants.• We are so easily led to pernicious solutions. lead the world/market/pack/field• But it was our television which led the world and that was largely built on great writing on contemporary themes.• The same computer and communications stocks that lead the market down all day, lead it back up in the 90 minutes.• The commentator even remarked on the fact that the two loose horses leading the field had caused no hindrance.• Commercial banks, including trusts, led the market lower.• The satisfaction of leading the world's finest professionals was short-lived, but Jim Thorpe will never forget that 24 hours.• Neither needed the United States leading the world to higher interest rates.• His answer to this question led the world to the development of the free-enterprise sys-tem.lead to/towards• Objects ought to lead to investigations about the society that produced them and the people who used them.• That accident led to speed restrictions and disruption throughout Britain's rail network during an emergency program of replacing cracked rails.• And it is proven to lead to stronger, more solid bones, relieve tension, depression and insomnia.• The road that led to the hospital sloped upwards through a forest of pine trees.• And it is that competition that led to the invention of gender.• These demanding situations lead to the notion that eating lunch is an indulgence.• These stages are like the treads of a stairway leading to the truth.• Or the research could go anywhere and lead to the unexpected!lead a normal/quiet/busy etc life• I long to go back, but I must let them lead normal lives.• It may be the only chance the ten year old child will have of leading a normal life.• Mendl will give me a home, he wants children, he wants to lead a normal life.• So long as the proper dose of insulin is administered on a regular basis, diabetics can generally lead normal lives.• Some have since returned and lead quiet lives.• He now leads a busy life as an honorary chaplain in York Minster. leadlead2 ●●○ S3 W2 noun 1 → the lead2 [singular] the amount or distance by which one competitor is ahead of another The Chicago Bulls had a narrow lead (=were winning by a small number of points).lead over The Socialists now have a commanding lead over their opponents.3 [singular]EXAMPLE if someone follows someone else’s lead, they do the same as the other person has done Other countries are likely to follow the U.S.'s lead. The Government should give industry a lead in tackling racism (=show what other people should do). The black population in the 1960s looked to Ali for a lead (=looked to him to show them what they should do).4 → take the lead (in doing something)5 [countable]INFORMATION a piece of information that may help you to solve a crime or mystery SYN clue The police have checked out dozens of leads, but have yet to find the killer.6 APTAM[countable] the main acting part in a play, film etc, or the main actorplay the lead/the lead role He will play the lead role in ‘Hamlet’. Powers was cast in the lead role (=he was chosen to play it).the male/female lead They were having trouble casting the female lead. the film’s romantic lead7 → lead singer/guitarist etc8 [countable] British EnglishDHP a piece of rope, leather, or chain for holding or controlling a dog SYN leashon a lead All dogs must be kept on a lead.9 [countable] British EnglishDT a wire used to connect a piece of electrical equipment to the power supply SYN cord American English → jump leadsCOLLOCATIONSverbsbe in the leadHe was in the lead after the first lap of the race.have the leadHe has a one-shot lead in the golf tournament.take the lead (=start being in the lead instead of someone else)Lewis Hamilton has just taken the lead in the Monaco Grand Prix.put somebody in the lead (=make someone be in the lead)Ronaldo’s goal put Portugal in the lead.give somebody the lead (=make someone be in the lead)A goal in the 10th minute gave England the lead.extend/increase/stretch somebody’s lead (=make the lead bigger)The Australian rugby team extended its lead with a try from Stirling Mortlock.throw away a lead (=to lose the lead)Arsenal threw away a two-goal lead.blow a lead informal (=to lose the lead)They managed to blow a 22-point lead.share the lead (=when more than one player or team is in the lead )At the end of the first round, two golfers share the lead.ADJECTIVES/NOUN + lead a big leadThe Bruins had a big lead at half-time.a clear leadThe ruling Labour Party has a clear lead in the opinion polls.a comfortable lead (=a big lead)The Wildcats had a comfortable lead in the first half.a commanding lead (=a big lead)Alonso raced into a commanding lead.an early lead (=a lead early in a game, election etc)Liverpool took an early lead with a goal from Steven Gerrard.a one-shot/two-goal/three point etc lead (=a lead of a specific amount)Goals by Keane and Lennon gave Tottenham a two-goal lead.
Examples from the Corpuslead• Two-goal Dave Mitchell fired Swindon into an early lead.• There were no clues, no leads, no moves to be made.• The police have no leads in the murder investigation.• Tucker got a belly full of lead.• High levels of lead were discovered in the soil in Skagway.• The wall was covered with scrawls done with a bit of pencil lead.• We got our cherry popped that day, and my platoon was in the lead.• Who's playing the lead in the school play?lead over• Virginia holds a 12-game lead over Kentucky.follow ... lead• He hesitated, but followed my lead.• But he is not the leader of any faction or group of lawmakers who would naturally follow his lead, lawmakers said.• I hope other historians will now follow his lead.• A few other protestors followed her lead.• He jerked his head for Langford to follow, and led the way out of the office.• It includes a petition urging fellow purists to follow his lead.• His eyes narrowed slightly but he started the second verse in the minor key she was using, following her lead.• It is likely that they will follow London's lead and also exempt motorcycles from any charges. the male/female lead• Glenda Jackson had already been approached for the female lead.• Sam, 26, played the female lead in a version of the movie hit Grease.• She was the female lead and therefore a rival.• So far no progress with the female lead.on a lead• Research began on lead objects from the Roman era, lead ingots, and so on.• He had Ben with him, on a lead.• They keep it on a lead, away from the sheep.• Your 90 2.5 petrol will run perfectly on lead free petrol with no alteration.• The Department of Transport report on lead in petrol in July 1979 made a similar statement.• Experiments have shown that the most flawless surfaces are produced by carrying out the final lapping stages on a lead lap.• Switching on leads you straight to Channel 2.• Running back Garrison Hearst sustained a left shoulder stinger when he crashed into linebacker Jesse Tuggle on a lead block.leadlead3 /led/ noun 1 [uncountable]HCE a soft heavy grey metal that melts easily and is poisonous, used on roofs, or in the past for water pipes. It is a chemical element: symbol Pb2 [countable, uncountable]DAVP the central part of a pencil that makes the marks when you write3 → go down like a lead balloon4 [uncountable] American English old-fashionedSHOOT bullets They filled him full of lead.5 → leads
Examples from the Corpuslead• All these increase costs and lead to economic inefficiency.• Two-goal Dave Mitchell fired Swindon into an early lead.• There were no clues, no leads, no moves to be made.• We got our cherry popped that day, and my platoon was in the lead.• One of the lead negotiators in the Liggett talks said a possible deal was still moving forward.From Longman Business Dictionaryleadlead1 /liːd/ verb (past participle led /led/) [transitive]1to be in charge of something such as an important activity, a group of people, or an organizationThe manager had led a series of projects that improved productivity in his region.a new management team led by Roger Shute2to be more successful than other people, companies, or countries in a particular activity or area of businessPrinting banknotes is one area where Britain leads the world.a company that leads the field in software applications3to happen before something elseTypically, stockmarkets lead the recovery of the real economy by four to six months.4lead the way to be the first to do something, especially something good or successful, which is likely to encourage others to do the same thingLarge grocery multiples and the oil companies have led the way in retail modelling. → see also -led→ See Verb tableleadlead2 noun1[countable]MARKETING a piece of information such as a list of telephone numbers that may help someone selling something to find customersThe in-house sales team deals with all telephone sales leads.2[singular]COMMERCE when you are in front of or better than everyone else you are competing withThe company has a substantial lead over its main competitors.Origin lead1 Old English lædan