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[ri-sahyt] /rɪˈsaɪt/
verb (used with object), recited, reciting.
to repeat the words of, as from memory, especially in a formal manner:
to recite a lesson.
to repeat (a piece of poetry or prose) before an audience, as for entertainment.
to give an account of:
to recite one's adventures.
to enumerate.
verb (used without object), recited, reciting.
to recite a lesson or part of a lesson for a teacher.
to recite or repeat something from memory.
Origin of recite
late Middle English
1400-50; late Middle English reciten < Latin recitāre to read aloud, equivalent to re- re- + citāre to summon, cite1
Related forms
recitable, adjective
reciter, noun
prerecite, verb (used with object), prerecited, prereciting.
unrecited, adjective
well-recited, adjective
3. narrate, describe. See relate. 4. count, number, detail. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for recite
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • To name their titles would be to recite a Homeric catalogue.

  • Let me see, the prior told me to recite ten every day—ten beads or ten rosaries?

    En Route J.-K. (Joris-Karl) Huysmans
  • Say the multiplication table if you like, or recite cook-book recipes.

    The Firefly Of France Marion Polk Angellotti
  • If—if you do that again—if you dare to recite those verses about me, I shall go!

    Iole Robert W. Chambers
  • They supposed he was about to recite the Office for the Dead.

British Dictionary definitions for recite


to repeat (a poem, passage, etc) aloud from memory before an audience, teacher, etc
(transitive) to give a detailed account of
(transitive) to enumerate (examples, etc)
Derived Forms
recitable, adjective
reciter, noun
Word Origin
C15: from Latin recitāre to cite again, from re- + citāre to summon; see cite
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for recite

early 15c., from Old French reciter (12c.) and directly from Latin recitare "read aloud, read out, repeat from memory, declaim," from re- "back, again" (see re-) + citare "to summon" (see cite). Related: Recited; reciting.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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