1 noun
1 TYPE (C) especially BrE a group or class of people, things etc that have similar qualities or features; type
(+ of): What sort of shampoo do you use? | all sorts of (=a lot of different types of things): soup flavoured with all sorts of herbs | of this/that sort: On expeditions of this sort you have to be prepared for trouble. | of some sort/some sort of (=of an unknown type): Her pupils were dilated as if she was on some sort of drug. | of one sort or another (=of various sorts): Violence of one sort or another is a fact of life in modern cities. —see kind 1
2 a sort of especially BrE used when describing someone or something in a not very exact way: The walls are a sort of greeny-blue colour.
3 of sorts/of a sort used when something is of a particular type but is not a very good example of it: I taught myself to type and got a job of sorts.
4 PERSON (singular) BrE someone who has a particular type of character, and is therefore likely to behave in a particular way: Iain's never even looked at another woman. He's not the sort. | a good/bad sort old-fashioned: Jane's not a bad sort, she's just a bit careless.
5 out of sorts feeling a little ill or upset: Louise went back to work feeling rather out of sorts after their row.
6 COMPUTER (singular) if a computer does a sort, it puts things in a particular order
—compare kind 1
7 sort of
a) used to say that something is partly true but does not describe the exact situation: I sort of like him, but I don't know why. | “Were you disappointed?” “Well, yes, sort of. But it didn't matter really.”
b) especially BrE used when you are not sure you are using the best word to describe something: Then they started sort of chanting, you know, like singing and shouting at the same time.
c) sort of price/time/speed etc especially BrE a price etc that is within a certain range: What sort of time were you thinking of starting? | That's the sort of price I was looking for.
8 sort of thing especially BrE used when you are not giving an exact description or list of something: Just keep away from drink, drugs, that sort of thing. | We could just stay here and pass the time, sort of thing.
9 sort of like especially BrE used when you are trying to describe something but cannot think of the exact words: It was sort of like really strange and mysterious, walking round this empty building.
10 all sorts especially BrE a lot of different types of things: They play pop, rock, jazz, soul, all sorts in there.
(+ of): I like all sorts of food, I'm not fussy.
11 it takes all sorts (to make a world) BrE used to say that you think someone is behaving in a strange or crazy way: He goes climbing up cliffs without ropes or anything? Oh well, it takes all sorts.
12 what sort of...? especially BrE used when you are angry about what someone has said or done: What sort of time do you call this to come in?
13 nothing of the sort especially BrE used to say angrily that something is not true or that someone should not do something: “I'm going to watch T.V” “You'll do nothing of the sort.”
2 verb
1 (T) to put things in a particular order or arrange them in groups according to size, rank, type etc: The eggs are sorted according to size. | sort sth into: The teacher sorted the children into teams.
2 be sorted BrE spoken if something such as a problem is sorted, you have dealt with it in a satisfactory way: get sth sorted (=repaired): We need to get the washing machine sorted. | get yourself sorted (=deal with all your problems)
sort sb/sth out phrasal verb (T)
1 to organize something that is mixed up or untidy: I must sort out my clothes for tomorrow.
2 to separate something from a group: I've sorted out the papers that can be thrown away.
3 sort itself out if something sorts itself out, it stops being a problem without you having to do anything: Our financial problems should sort themselves out in a week or two.
4 especially BrE to deal with problems: There's been a mistake. I'll try to sort things out and call you back. | get sth sorted out: I want to get everything sorted out before we leave. | sort yourself out (=deal with all your problems and difficulties): I'm staying with a friend until I manage to sort myself out.
5 BrE to make someone stop doing something annoying or unpleasant, especially by punishing them: If he bothers you again I'll soon sort him out.
sort through sth phrasal verb (T) to look for something among a lot of similar things, especially when you arrange these things into an order: Vicky swiftly sorted through a pile of papers.

Longman dictionary of contemporary English. 2004.

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