To mean business
Business Busi"ness (b[i^]z"n[e^]s), n.; pl. {Businesses} (b[i^]z"n[e^]s*[e^]z). [From {Busy}.] 1. That which busies one, or that which engages the time, attention, or labor of any one, as his principal concern or interest, whether for a longer or shorter time; constant employment; regular occupation; as, the business of life; business before pleasure. [1913 Webster]

Wist ye not that I must be about my Father's business? --Luke ii. 49. [1913 Webster]

2. Any particular occupation or employment engaged in for livelihood or gain, as agriculture, trade, art, or a profession. ``The business of instruction.'' --Prescott. [1913 Webster]

3. Financial dealings; buying and selling; traffic in general; mercantile transactions. [1913 Webster]

It seldom happens that men of a studious turn acquire any degree of reputation for their knowledge of business. --Bp. Popteus. [1913 Webster]

4. That which one has to do or should do; special service, duty, or mission. [1913 Webster]

The daughter of the King of France, On serious business, craving quick despatch, Importunes personal conference. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

What business has the tortoise among the clouds? --L'Estrange. [1913 Webster]

5. Affair; concern; matter; -- used in an indefinite sense, and modified by the connected words. [1913 Webster]

It was a gentle business, and becoming The action of good women. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

Bestow Your needful counsel to our business. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

6. (Drama) The position, distribution, and order of persons and properties on the stage of a theater, as determined by the stage manager in rehearsal. [1913 Webster]

7. Care; anxiety; diligence. [Obs.] --Chaucer. [1913 Webster]

{To do one's business}, to ruin one. [Colloq.] --Wycherley.

{To make (a thing) one's business}, to occupy one's self with a thing as a special charge or duty. [Colloq.]

{To mean business}, to be earnest. [Colloq.] [1913 Webster]

Syn: Affairs; concern; transaction; matter; engagement; employment; calling; occupation; trade; profession; vocation; office; duty. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • mean business — {v. phr.}, {informal} To decide strongly to do what you plan to do; really mean it; be serious. * /The boss said he would fire us if we didn t work harder and he means business./ * /When she went to college to study, she meant business./ * /He… …   Dictionary of American idioms

  • mean business — {v. phr.}, {informal} To decide strongly to do what you plan to do; really mean it; be serious. * /The boss said he would fire us if we didn t work harder and he means business./ * /When she went to college to study, she meant business./ * /He… …   Dictionary of American idioms

  • mean\ business — v. phr. informal To decide strongly to do what you plan to do; really mean it; be serious. The boss said he would fire us if we didn t work harder and he means business. When she went to college to study, she meant business. He just liked the… …   Словарь американских идиом

  • Mean Business — Studio album by The Firm Released 3 February 1986 Recorded 1985 …   Wikipedia

  • mean business — to be serious about achieving something, even if other people disagree with you. The changes the new government has made show they mean business …   New idioms dictionary

  • mean business — phrasal : to be in earnest : have a sober, serious, and determined intent in respect to something * * * mean business To be in earnest • • • Main Entry: ↑business * * * mean business informal phrase to ser …   Useful english dictionary

  • mean business — tv. to be very, very serious. □ Stop laughing! I mean business. □ I could tell from the look on her face that she meant business. mean something mod. having to do with an excellent example of the art of doing something well habitually. □ John… …   Dictionary of American slang and colloquial expressions

  • mean business — informal to seriously intend to do what you say you will do They ve threatened to close us down, and I think they mean business …   English dictionary

  • mean business —    If someone means business, they are serious about what they announce.     The boss says that in future any missing material will be reported to the police, and he looks as though he means business …   English Idioms & idiomatic expressions

  • mean business — be serious, ready to take action He is working very hard and really means business when he says he is going to get the office organized …   Idioms and examples

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