fair

1 adjective
1 REASONABLE AND ACCEPTABLE a situation, system, or way of treating people that is fair seems reasonable and acceptable: a fair wage for the job | Who said life was fair? | Everyone should have the right to a fair trial. | it is fair to do sth: It seems fair to give them their money back. | it's fair to say that (=used to say that a judgement about something seems reasonable): I think it's fair to say that she was not to blame for the accident.
2 TREATING EVERYONE EQUALLY a fair situation, judgement, description etc is one in which everyone is treated equally: Why do you let her stay out late and not me? It's not fair! | fair to: The old law wasn't fair to women. | it's only fair (that): You pay him $10 an hour - it's only fair that I should get the same.
3 FAIR PERSON someone who treats everyone in a reasonable, equal way: The boss is a hard man - hard but fair.
4 QUITE BIG/FAR/A LOT a fair size/number/amount/distance etc especially BrE a fairly large size, number etc: There's a fair amount of unemployment around here. | We had travelled a fair way by lunch time.
5 SKIN/HAIR light in colour: He had blue eyes and fair hair. | Both her children are very fair.
—opposite dark 1 (4)
6 LEVEL OF ABILITY neither particularly good nor particularly bad; average: Her written work is excellent but her practical work is only fair.
7 ACCORDING TO THE RULES a fair fight, game, or election is one that is played or done according to the rules: free and fair elections
8 WEATHER pleasant and not windy, rainy etc: That morning the weather was fair, and the air was warm.
9 have a fair idea of to know quite a lot about what something is like: I think I have a fair idea of what the job involves.
10 have had more than your fair share of to have had more of something, especially something unpleasant, than seems reasonable or fair: Poor old Alan! He's had more than his fair share of bad luck recently.
11 give sb a fair crack of the whip BrE informal to give someone the chance to do something especially to show that they are able to do it
12 a fair shake AmE informal fair treatment that allows someone the same chances as everyone else: Inner city kids aren't getting a fair shake in the schools.
13 by fair means or foul using any method to get what you want, including dishonest or illegal methods
14 fair-to-middling not feeling very well
15 all's fair in love and war used to say that in some situations any method of getting what you want is acceptable
16 PLEASANT/ATTRACTIVE old use pleasant and attractive: The fair city of Rome. | a fair maiden
—see also: fairly, fairness
17 fair enough especially BrE used to say that you agree with someone's suggestion or that something seems reasonable: “See you on Tuesday at 8.” “Fair enough.” | Well, if you want to go on your own that's fair enough.
18 it's/that's not fair used when you think that what is happening is unfair: It's not fair, you never let me borrow your clothes. | It's/that's not fair on sb: You can't just give the clever kids attention because that's not fair on the rest of the class.
19 to be fair used when adding something after someone has been criticized, which helps to explain or excuse what they did: She should have phoned to tell us what her plans were although, to be fair, she's been very busy.
20 fair comment BrE used to say that a remark or criticism seems fair: “I don't mind doing the work, but you should have asked me.” “Fair comment.”
21 be fair! used to tell someone not to be unreasonable or criticize someone too much: Come on, be fair, the poor girl's trying her hardest!
22 fair's fair used when you think it is fair that someone should do something, especially because of something that has happened earlier: Come on, fair's fair - I paid last time so it's your turn.
23 you can't say fairer than that BrE used to say that an offer you are making to someone is the best, fairest offer they can possibly get: I'll give you -25 for it - you can't say fairer than that, can you?
24 it's a fair cop BrE used in a joking way when someone catches you doing something that you should not be doing: “I saw you, now give me that back.” “ All right, it's a fair cop.”
25 with your own fair hands BrE humorous used to say that you did something by yourself without any help: “Did you do all the decorating yourself?” “Yes, it's all been done with my own fair hands.”
2 adverb
1 play fair to do something in a fair and honest way
2 hit sth fair and square to hit something directly in a particular place: I hit him fair and square on the nose.
3 tell sb fair and square to tell someone honestly and directly
3 noun (C)
1 a form of outdoor entertainment, at which there are large machines to ride on and games in which you can win prizes; carnival (2) AmE
—see also: funfair
2 BrE a market where animals and farm products are sold: a cattle fair
3 an event at which farm products and equipment are shown and entered in competitions, and where there are often games and large machines to ride on : state/county fair (=a fair for the whole state or county)
4 a regular occasion when companies show their newest products in order to advertise them: a trade fair | The Frankfurt Book Fair
5 an outdoor event with games and things to buy, organized to get money; fete 1 (1) BrE

Longman dictionary of contemporary English. 2004.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • fair — adj 1: characterized by honesty and justice: free from self interest, deception, injustice, or favoritism a fair and impartial tribunal 2: reasonable as a basis for exchange a fair wage a fair valuation 3: consistent with merit or importance …   Law dictionary

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  • fair — Ⅰ. fair [1] ► ADJECTIVE 1) just or appropriate in the circumstances. 2) treating people equally. 3) considerable in size or amount. 4) moderately good. 5) (of hair or complexion) light; blonde. 6) (of weather) f …   English terms dictionary

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  • fair — [adj1] impartial, unprejudiced aboveboard, benevolent, blameless, candid, civil, clean, courteous, decent, disinterested, dispassionate, equal, equitable, even handed, frank, generous, good, honest, honorable, impartial, just, lawful, legitimate …   New thesaurus

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