1 LARGE AMOUNT a lot also lots informal a large quantity or number: The stereo cost a lot, but it was worth it. | "How much ice cream do you want?" "Lots, please."
(+ of): There were lots of people at the party. | a lot to do/see/eat etc: There's a lot to do before the wedding. | an awful lot (=a very large amount)
2 MUCH (+ comparative) if something is a lot or lots better, easier etc, it is much better, easier etc: Benny can run lots faster than me. | Andrea always had a lot more money than I had.
3 have a lot on BrE have a lot going on AmE to be very busy, with a lot of things to do in a short time
4 have a lot on your mind to have a lot of problems that you are worried about
5 thanks a lot spoken
a) thank you very much
b) used when you are annoyed about something and do not really mean thank you at all: "I forgot to bring your money." "Well, thanks a lot!"
6 TO BE SOLD (C) something that is sold, especially at an auction 1: Lot fifteen was a box of old books.
7 have a lot to answer for to be responsible for a bad situation: Jerry's got a lot to answer for. If it weren't for him, Ann would never have left Denver.
8 the lot especially BrE the whole quantity or number: I can't believe you ate the whole lot!
9 FILM (C) a building and the land surrounding it where films are made; a film studio (2): the Universal Studios lot
10 SB'S LOT sometimes humorous the work, responsibilities, social position etc that you have, especially when they could be better: She seems happy enough with her lot in life.
11 PEOPLE (singular) BrE informal a group of people, especially one you do not completely approve of: Come on you lot, hurry up! | the lot of you/them etc (=all of you, them etc): Outside, the lot of you!
12 GROUP OF THINGS BrE informal a group of things: Let's drop this lot off and go home.
13 OF LAND (C) especially AmE an area of land used for building on or for another particular purpose: We could turn that vacant lot into a playground. | a used-car lot
-see also: parking lot
14 have a lot on your plate informal especially BrE to have a lot of difficult problems to deal with: Leave Mum alone - she's got a lot on her plate at the moment.
15 draw lots to decide on someone or something by choosing one piece of paper, object etc from among many: They drew lots to see who would go first.
16 throw in/cast your lot with sb to join or support someone, so that what happens to you depends on what happens to them: They threw their lot in with the allies.
17 by lot by drawing lots: In Athens at that time, judges were chosen by lot.
-see also: bad egg/lot/sort/type bad 1 (16), fall to sb's lot fall 1, a fat lot of good/use fat 1 (5)

Longman dictionary of contemporary English. 2004.

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