What does ‘lose’ mean?

The word ‘lose’ can mean many different things. As a verb, it means no longer having something/someone, less than before, get rid of or be defeated.


For example:

  • I’ve lost my car keys, have you seen them? (means no longer having something/someone)
  • I’ve lost 2 kilos this ,month. (less than before)
  • Lose the attitude, or you’ll be washing your own clothes. (get rid of)
  • United lost the game 3-0. (be defeated)

Lose is an irregular verb. The past tense and the past participle is lost. I’ll give you an example sentence of each tense:

  • My mother is losing her marbles. (present)
  • The business lost £300,000 last year. (past simple)
  • I have lost 3 family members this month. (past participle)


HOT TIP: Lose is pronounced like ‘luz’ with a voiced ‘s’. It’s often confused with the word loose. Loose is an adjective and it rhymes with goose.

verb phrases - lose
Idioms with verbs - LOSE - lose ground
Idioms with verbs - LOSE - lose one’s bottle
lose idiom - lose track of time
Idioms with verbs - LOSE - no time to lose