- to have confidence in the truth, the existence, or the reliability of something, although without absolute proof that one is right in doing so: Only if one believes in something can one act purposefully.
- to have confidence or faith in the truth of (a positive assertion, story, etc.); give credence to.
- to have confidence in the assertions of (a person).
- to have a conviction that (a person or thing) is, has been, or will be engaged in a given action or involved in a given situation: The fugitive is believed to be headed for the Mexican border.
- to suppose or assume; understand (usually followed by a noun clause): I believe that he has left town.
- believe in,
- to be persuaded of the truth or existence of: to believe in Zoroastrianism; to believe in ghosts.
- to have faith in the reliability, honesty, benevolence, etc., of: I can help only if you believe in me.
- make believe. make1(def 68).
Origin of believe
Examples from the Web for believed
Drugeon survived an airstrike last year and is believed to be still at large, officials have said.U.S. Spies See Al Qaeda Fingerprints on Paris Massacre
Shane Harris, Nancy A. Youssef
January 8, 2015
Garner believed that he could stand on a public street, unarmed, and address police officers rationally.What Would Happen if I Got in White Cop’s Face?
December 30, 2014
However, we have just had a necessary wake-up call that all is not as secure as we believed.A Gift to the Jihadis: The Unseen Airport Security Threat
December 27, 2014
The Castros are the latest in a long line of despots he believed he could negotiate with.Obama’s One Hand Clap With Castro
December 24, 2014
According to police sources, was believed to have visited New York City sometime last week.Alleged Cop Killer Ismaaiyl Brinsley Had a Death Wish
December 22, 2014
I have sought for thee throughout the world, and at last I believed thee dead.
The fable is fanciful and pleasing in itself; but will it not hereafter be believed as reality?
Might not the same history be told of much that is believed?
I do not presume to decide whether all that is believed has the inward significancy.
It had been folly enough while he believed that she stood ready to accept him and his wealth.The Spenders
Harry Leon Wilson
- (tr; may take a clause as object) to accept (a statement, supposition, or opinion) as trueI believe God exists
- (tr) to accept the statement or opinion of (a person) as true
- (intr foll by in) to be convinced of the truth or existence (of)to believe in fairies
- (intr) to have religious faith
- (when tr, takes a clause as object) to think, assume, or supposeI believe that he has left already
- (tr; foll by of; used with can, could, would, etc) to think that someone is able to do (a particular action)I wouldn't have believed it of him
Word Origin and History for believed
Old English belyfan "to believe," earlier geleafa (Mercian), gelefa (Northumbrian), gelyfan (West Saxon) "believe," from Proto-Germanic *ga-laubjan "to believe," perhaps literally "hold dear, love" (cf. Old Saxon gilobian "believe," Dutch geloven, Old High German gilouben, German glauben), ultimately a compound based on PIE *leubh- "to care, desire, love" (see belief).
Spelling beleeve is common till 17c.; then altered, perhaps by influence of relieve, etc. To believe on instead of in was more common in 16c. but now is a peculiarity of theology; believe of also sometimes was used in 17c. Related: Believed (formerly occasionally beleft); believing. Expression believe it or not attested by 1874; Robert Ripley's newspaper cartoon of the same name is from 1918. Emphatic you better believe attested from 1854.