lead Definition

  • 1to show the way to a place by going there with or in front of someone
  • 2to control a group of people, a country, or a situation
  • 3a soft heavy toxic malleable metallic element; bluish white when freshly cut but tarnishes readily to dull grey

Using lead: Examples

Take a moment to familiarize yourself with how "lead" can be used in various situations through the following examples!

  • Example

    Can you lead us to the nearest gas station?

  • Example

    She led the team to victory.

  • Example

    The president led the country through a difficult time.

  • Example

    Lead is used in batteries and bullets.

  • Example

    He was poisoned by lead in the water.

lead Synonyms and Antonyms

Idioms Using lead

  • lead a double life

    to have a secret life in addition to one's public life


    He was leading a double life, secretly working as a spy while pretending to be a businessman.

  • to deceive or mislead someone


    He led me up the garden path with promises of a promotion, but it never happened.

  • in a position of advantage or ahead of others in a competition or race


    After the first lap, she was in the lead and never looked back.

Phrases with lead

  • to show others how to behave by doing so yourself


    The manager always leads by example, working hard and treating everyone with respect.

  • to go first and show others where to go


    The tour guide led the way through the jungle.

  • to become the leader or most important person in a situation


    After the CEO resigned, the CFO took the lead in running the company.

Origins of lead

from Old English 'lǣdan', meaning 'cause to go with one, guide, conduct'


Summary: lead in Brief

The verb 'lead' [liːd] means to guide, direct, or control people or situations. It can also refer to showing the way to a place. As a noun, 'lead' refers to a soft, heavy, toxic, malleable metallic element. Common phrases include 'lead by example,' 'lead the way,' and 'take the lead.' Idioms include 'lead a double life,' 'lead someone up the garden path,' and 'in the lead.'

How do native speakers use this expression?