- to turn one's eyes toward something or in some direction in order to see: He looked toward the western horizon and saw the returning planes.
- to glance or gaze in a manner specified: to look questioningly at a person.
- to use one's sight or vision in seeking, searching, examining, watching, etc.: to look through the papers.
- to tend, as in bearing or significance: Conditions look toward war.
- to appear or seem to the eye as specified: to look pale.
- to appear or seem to the mind: The case looks promising.
- to direct attention or consideration: to look at the facts.
- to have an outlook or afford a view: The window looks upon the street.
- to face or front: The house looks to the east.
- to give (someone) a look: He looked me straight in the eye.
- to have an appearance appropriate to or befitting (something): She looked her age.
- to appear to be; look like: He looked a perfect fool, coming to the party a day late.
- to express or suggest by looks: to look one's annoyance at a person.
- Archaic. to bring, put, etc., by looks.
- the act of looking: a look of inquiry.
- a visual search or examination.
- the way in which a person or thing appears to the eye or to the mind; aspect: He has the look of an honest man. The tablecloth has a cheap look.
- an expressive glance: to give someone a sharp look.
- general aspect; appearance: to like the looks of a place.
- attractive, pleasing appearance.
- look after,
- to follow with the eye, as someone or something moving away: She looked after him as he walked toward the train station.
- to pay attention to; concern oneself with: to look after one's own interests.
- to take care of; minister to: to look after a child.
- look back, to review past events; return in thought: When I look back on our school days, it seems as if they were a century ago.
- look down on/upon, to regard with scorn or disdain; have contempt for: They look down on all foreigners.
- look for,
- to seek; search for: Columbus was looking for a shorter route to India when he discovered America.
- to anticipate; expect: I'll be looking for you at the reception.
- look in,
- Also look into.to look briefly inside of: Look in the jar and tell me if any cookies are left.
- Also look in on.to visit (a person, place, etc.) briefly: I'll look in some day next week.
- look into, to inquire into; investigate; examine: The auditors are looking into the records to find the cause of the discrepancy.
- look on/upon,
- to be a spectator; watch: The crowd looked on at the street brawl.
- to consider; regard: They look upon gambling as sinful.
- look out,
- to look to the outside, as from a window or a place of observation: From her office window, she could look out over the bustling city.
- to be vigilant or on guard: Look out, there are dangers ahead.
- to afford a view; face: The room looks out on the garden.
- look out for, to take watchful care of; be concerned about: He has to look out for his health.
- look over, to examine, especially briefly: Will you please look over my report before I submit it?
- look to,
- to direct one's glance or gaze to: If you look to your left, you can see the Empire State Building.
- to pay attention to: Look to your own affairs and stay out of mine.
- to direct one's expectations or hopes to: We look to the day when world peace will be a reality.
- to regard with expectation and anticipation: We look to the future and greater advances in science and technology.
- look up,
- to direct the eyes upward; raise one's glance: The other guests looked up as she entered the room.
- to become better or more prosperous; improve: Business is looking up.
- to search for, as an item of information, in a reference book or the like: Look up the answer in the encyclopedia.
- to seek out, especially to visit: to look up an old friend.
- Nautical.(of a sailing ship) to head more nearly in the direction of its destination after a favoring change of wind.
- look up to, to regard with admiration or respect; esteem: A boy needs a father he can look up to.
- look daggers, to look at someone with a furious, menacing expression: I could see my partner looking daggers at me.
- look down one's nose at, to regard with an overbearing attitude of superiority, disdain, or censure: The more advanced students really looked down their noses at the beginners.
- look forward to, to anticipate with eagerness or pleasure: I always look forward to your visits.
- look sharp,
- to be alert and quick: If you want to get ahead, you must look sharp.
- Also British, look slippy.to hurry: You'd better look sharp! It's getting late.
Origin of look
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
- the part of the face or facial region in humans and certain animals that contains the nostrils and the organs of smell and functions as the usual passageway for air in respiration: in humans it is a prominence in the center of the face formed of bone and cartilage, serving also to modify or modulate the voice.
- this part as the organ of smell.
- the sense of smell: fragrances appealing to the nose.
- anything regarded as resembling the nose of a person or animal, as a spout or nozzle.
- the prow of a ship.
- the forward end of an aircraft.
- the forward edge of the head of a golf club.
- a projecting part of anything: the nose of a pair of pliers.
- a faculty of perceiving or detecting: to have a nose for news.
- the human nose regarded as a symbol of meddling or prying: Why can't he keep his nose out of my business?
- the length of a nose: The horse won the race by a nose.
- the bouquet of an alcoholic drink, especially the distinctive aroma of a wine.
- to perceive by or as by the nose or the sense of smell: a cheese that could be nosed at some distance.
- to approach the nose to, as in smelling or examining; sniff.
- to move or push forward with or as with the nose: The dog nosed its pup back into the yard. The boat nosed its way toward shore.
- to touch or rub with the nose; nuzzle.
- to smell or sniff.
- to seek as if by smelling or scent: The dogs nosed after their quarry.
- to move or push forward: to nose into the wind.
- to meddle or pry (often followed by about, into, etc.): They are always nosing about in other people's business.
- nose out,
- to defeat, especially by a narrow margin: The other candidates had been nosed out in the final returns.
- to learn or discover, especially by snooping or prying: to nose out a secret.
- count noses, to count the number of people in attendance: Each time the troop left an exhibit the leader counted noses.
- cut off one's nose to spite one's face, to create a disadvantage to oneself through one's own spiteful action.
- follow one's nose,
- to go forward in a straight course.
- to guide oneself by instinct: I found the house by following my nose.
- hold one's nose, to repress feelings of distaste, repulsion, or offense for something that one is obliged to do: He held his nose and voted for the bill.
- keep one's nose clean, to behave oneself; avoid trouble or scandal: Did he keep his nose clean after he got out of prison?
- keep one's nose to the grindstone. grindstone(def 3).
- lead (around) by the nose, to exercise complete control over; dominate totally: He lets his brother lead him by the nose.
- look down one's nose at, to regard with disdain or condescension: He had always looked down his nose at those who were poorer than he.
- on the nose, Informal.
- precisely, correctly, or perfectly.
- exactly on time: We made it at ten o'clock on the nose.
- (of a bet) for win only.
- Australian Informal.decayed or putrid; stinking.
- Australian Informal.distasteful or unpleasant; of doubtful validity or propriety.
- pay through the nose, to pay an excessive price: They patronize small and exclusive shops where they cheerfully pay through the nose.
- put someone's nose out of joint,
- to annoy or irritate greatly.
- to supersede a person in another's regard, devotion, etc.
- to thwart someone; spoil someone's plans.
- rub someone's nose in, to persecute or tease someone persistently about; nag someone about: I know I was wrong but you don't have to rub my nose in it.
- turn up one's nose at, to regard with contempt; scorn: My friend turns up his nose at anyone who hasn't had a college education.
- under someone's nose, plainly visible to; in full view of; in bold defiance of: The theft took place right under the detective's nose.Also under someone's very nose.
Origin of nose
- (often foll by at) to direct the eyes (towards)to look at the sea
- (often foll by at) to direct one's attention (towards)let's look at the circumstances
- (often foll by to) to turn one's interests or expectations (towards)to look to the future
- (copula) to give the impression of being by appearance to the eye or mind; seemthat looks interesting
- to face in a particular directionthe house looks north
- to expect, hope, or plan (to do something)I look to hear from you soon; he's looking to get rich
- (foll by for)
- to search or seekI looked for you everywhere
- to cherish the expectation (of); hope (for)I look for success
- (foll by to)
- to be mindful (of)to look to the promise one has made
- to have recourse (to)look to your swords, men!
- to be a pointer or signthese early inventions looked towards the development of industry
- (foll by into) to carry out an investigationto look into a mystery
- (tr) to direct a look at (someone) in a specified wayshe looked her rival up and down
- (tr) to accord in appearance with (something)to look one's age
- look alive or look lively hurry up; get busy
- look daggers See dagger (def. 4)
- look here an expression used to attract someone's attention, add emphasis to a statement, etc
- look sharp or look smart (imperative) to hurry up; make haste
- not look at to refuse to considerthey won't even look at my offer of £5000
- not much to look at unattractive; plain
- the act or an instance of lookinga look of despair
- a view or sight (of something)let's have a look
- (often plural) appearance to the eye or mind; aspectthe look of innocence; I don't like the looks of this place
- style; fashionthe new look for summer
- an expression demanding attention or showing annoyance, determination, etclook, I've had enough of this
- the organ of smell and entrance to the respiratory tract, consisting of a prominent structure divided into two hair-lined air passages by a median septumRelated adjectives: nasal, rhinal
- the sense of smell itself: in hounds and other animals, the ability to follow trails by scent (esp in the phrases a good nose, a bad nose)
- another word for bouquet (def. 2)
- instinctive skill or facility, esp in discovering things (sometimes in the phrase follow one's nose)he had a nose for good news stories
- any part regarded as resembling a nose in form or function, such as a nozzle or spout
- the forward part of a vehicle, aircraft, etc, esp the front end of an aircraft
- narrow margin of victory (in the phrase (win) by a nose)
- cut off one's nose to spite one's face to carry out a vengeful action that hurts oneself more than another
- get up someone's nose informal to annoy or irritate someone
- keep one's nose clean to stay out of trouble; behave properly
- keep one's nose to the grindstone to work hard and continuously
- lead someone by the nose to make someone do unquestioningly all one wishes; dominate someone
- look down one's nose at informal to be contemptuous or disdainful of
- nose to tail (of vehicles) moving or standing very close behind one another
- on the nose slang
- (in horse-race betting) to win onlyI bet twenty pounds on the nose on that horse
- mainly US and Canadianprecisely; exactly
- Australianbad or bad-smelling
- pay through the nose informal to pay an exorbitant price
- poke one's nose into or stick one's nose into informal to pry into or interfere in
- put someone's nose out of joint informal to thwart or offend someone, esp by supplanting him or gaining something he regards as his
- rub someone's nose in it informal to remind someone unkindly of his failing or error
- see no further than one's nose or see no further than the end of one's nose informal
- to be short-sighted; suffer from myopia
- to lack insight or foresight
- turn up one's nose or turn up one's nose at something informal to behave disdainfully towards (something)
- under one's nose
- directly in front of one
- without one noticing
- with one's nose in the air haughtily
- (tr) (esp of horses, dogs, etc) to rub, touch, or sniff with the nose; nuzzle
- to smell or sniff (wine, etc)
- (intr; usually foll by after or for) to search (for) by or as if by scent
- to move or cause to move forwards slowly and carefullythe car nosed along the cliff top; we nosed the car into the garage
- (intr; foll by into, around, about, etc) to pry or snoop (into) or meddle (in)
Word Origin and History for look down one's nose at
Old English locian "use the eyes for seeing, gaze, look, behold, spy," from West Germanic *lokjan (cf. Old Saxon lokon "see, look, spy," Middle Dutch loeken "to look," Old High German luogen, German dialectal lugen "to look out"), of unknown origin, perhaps cognate with Breton lagud "eye." In Old English, usually with on; the use of at began 14c. Meaning "seek, search out" is c.1300; meaning "to have a certain appearance" is from c.1400. Of objects, "to face in a certain direction," late 14c.
Look after "take care of" is from late 14c., earlier "to seek" (c.1300), "to look toward" (c.1200). Look into "investigate" is from 1580s; look up "research in books or papers" is from 1690s. To look down upon in the figurative sense is from 1711; to look down one's nose is from 1921. To look forward "anticipate" is c.1600; meaning "anticipate with pleasure" is mid-19c. To not look back "make no pauses" is colloquial, first attested 1893. In look sharp (1711) sharp originally was an adverb, "sharply."
"perceive the smell of," 1570s; "pry, search," 1640s, from nose (n.). Related: Nosed; nosing.
c.1200, "act or action of looking," from look (v.). Meaning "appearance of a person" is from late 14c. Expression if looks could kill ... attested by 1827 (if looks could bite is attested from 1747).
Old English nosu, from Proto-Germanic *nusus (cf. Old Norse nös, Old Frisian nose, Dutch neus, Old High German nasa, German Nase), from PIE *nas- "nose" (cf. Sanskrit nasa, Old Persian naham, Old Church Slavonic nasu, Lithuanian nosis, Latin nasus "nose"). Used of any prominent or projecting part from 1530s. (nose cone in the space rocket sense is from 1949). Used to indicate "something obvious" from 1590s. Meaning "odor, scent" is from 1894.
Kiv, It could bee no other then his owne manne, that had thrust his nose so farre out of ioynte. ["Barnabe Riche His Farewell to Military Profession," 1581]
Pay through the nose (1670s) seems to suggest "bleed." Many extended meanings are from the horse-racing sense of "length of a horse's nose," as a measure of distance between two finishers (1908). To turn up one's nose "show disdain" is from 1818 (earlier hold up one's nose, 1570s); similar notion in look down one's nose (1921). To say something is under (one's) nose "in plain view" is from 1540s.
- The part of the human face or the forward part of the head of other vertebrates that contains the nostrils and organs of smell and forms the beginning of the respiratory tract.
Idioms and Phrases with look down one's nose at
In addition to the idioms beginning with look
- look after
- look a gift horse in the mouth
- look alive
- look as if butter wouldn't melt
- look askance
- look back
- look before you leap
- look black
- look blank
- look daggers
- look down on
- look for
- look forward to
- look in on
- look into
- look like
- look like a million dollars
- look like death
- look like something the cat dragged in
- look like the cat that ate the canary
- look on
- look on the bright side
- look out
- look out for
- look over
- look sharp
- look sideways at
- look someone in the face
- look the other way
- look through rose-colored glasses
- look to
- look to one's laurels
- look up
- look up and down
- look up to
- look who's talking
In addition to the idioms beginning with nose
- nose about
- nose in
- nose in a book, have one's
- nose in the air, have one's
- nose into
- nose out
- nose out of joint, have one's
- nose to the grindstone, keep one's
- brown nose
- can't see beyond the end of one's nose
- count noses
- cut off one's nose
- follow one's nose
- keep one's nose clean
- lead by the nose
- look down on (one's nose)
- no skin off my nose
- on the nose
- pay through the nose
- plain as day (the nose on your face)
- poke one's nose into
- rub someone's nose in it
- thumb one's nose
- turn up one's nose
- under one's nose
- win by a nose