From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary Englishsighsigh1 /saɪ/ ●●○ verb [intransitive] 1 BREATHEto breathe in and out making a long sound, especially because you are bored, disappointed, tired etc ‘Well, there’s nothing we can do about it now, ’ she sighed.sigh heavily/deeply Frankie stared out of the window and sighed deeply.sigh with He sighed with despair at the thought of all the opportunities he had missed.► see thesaurus at breathe2 SOUND literary if the wind sighs, it makes a long sound like someone sighing The wind sighed in the trees.3 → sigh for something→ See Verb table
Examples from the Corpussigh• "I know, " she sighed.• "That's life, I suppose, '' she sighed.• Luce read it through twice, and sighed.• Eventually he sighed again, picked up his bag and went on up the steps into his house.• A tiny echo sighed back at him.• She sighed crossly, was about to dispose of the paper when a wicked thought possessed her.• Frank sighed deeply and stared out of the window.• The trees swayed and sighed gently in the soft wind.• She sighed lightly and pushed the door closed before she turned to dress.• She turned away from the window, sighing wearily as she glanced round the room.• Sighing wearily, she began her routine of getting ready for bed.• He sighed with a mixture of delight and despair.sigh heavily/deeply• Its roots rustled contentedly and it sighed deeply.• Jane flopped forward on her chair and sighed heavily.• He sighed heavily, and forced himself to relax.• In this he carefully laid Tess, and kissing her lips, sighed deeply and happily.• At last she sighed heavily, closed her magazine and sat back in her chair with her hands clasped in her lap.• Eventually he sighed deeply, pushed himself to his feet and with a wan smile departed.• He sighed deeply, stepping up to the white line.• Kissinger would sigh deeply, then take it up once again.sighsigh2 ●●○ noun [countable] BREATHEan act or sound of sighingsigh of She let out a sigh of impatience.give/let out/heave a sigh Laura shrugged, and gave a heavy sigh. We all breathed a sigh of relief when we heard they were safe.COLLOCATIONSverbsgive/let out a sighShe let out a sigh of disappointment.heave a sigh (=to sigh loudly and deeply)Uncle Walter heaved a sigh and slumped back in his chair.breathe a sigh of reliefWhen he had left, Miranda breathed a sigh of relief.adjectivesa deep sighJimmy gave a deep sigh and shrugged.a long sighWith a long sigh, she tried to shake off her sombre mood.a huge/great/big sighShe heaved a great sigh.a heavy sigh (=a big sad sigh)Finally, she turned away from the mirror with a heavy sigh.a little/small sighQuinn let out a little sigh and closed the book.a weary sighWith a weary sigh, she rubbed a hand over her eyes.an audible sigh (=a sigh that can be heard)Tonight she breathed an audible sigh of relief as the show ended.a collective sigh (=a sigh that many people give at the same time)She heard a collective sigh of relief as she announced her acceptance.phrasesa sigh of relief/exasperation/satisfaction etcAt last the girl stopped eating and sat back with a sigh of satisfaction.
Examples from the Corpussigh• The water companies are heaving a sigh of relief.• It was amazing what a sigh could do.• "Oh no!" he said with a sigh, "Not again!"• Tabitha flung herself at the hard bunk with an angry sigh.• Irene closed the door behind her and breathed a big sigh of relief.• She looked out of the now sparkling window and heaved a deep sigh.• The chief let out a deep sigh.• Those whose companies' dealings with Codelco declined during that time frame say they are heaving sighs of relief.• Quinn let out a little sigh and closed the book.sigh of• With a sigh of exhaustion, she let them leave.Origin sigh1 Old English sican