verb (used with object), caught, catch·ing.
verb (used without object), caught, catch·ing.
- to become popular: That new song is beginning to catch on.
- to grasp mentally; understand: You'd think he'd catch on that he's boring us.
- New England.(in cooking) to scorch or burn slightly; sear: A pot roast is better if allowed to catch on.
- to lift or snatch suddenly: Leaves were caught up in the wind.
- to bring or get up to date (often followed by on or with): to catch up on one's reading.
- to come up to or overtake (something or someone) (usually followed by with): to catch up with the leader in a race.
- to become involved or entangled with: caught up in the excitement of the crowd.
- to point out to (a person) minor errors, untruths, etc. (usually followed by on): We caught the teacher up on a number of factual details.
- Falconry.to capture for further training (a hawk that has been flown at hack).
- South Midland and Southern U.S.to harness (a horse or mule).
Origin of catch
Synonyms for catch
Antonyms for catch
Examples from the Web for catch
Contemporary Examples of catch
They all immediately dashed out to their car to catch the bad guys.Shot Down During the NYPD Slowdown
January 7, 2015
“The government just wanted to catch the big fish [in the Juarez cartel] and they ignored everything in between,” Lozoya said.
From a lyrical standpoint, there are precious few that can catch Kendrick.The 14 Best Songs of 2014: Bobby Shmurda, Future Islands, Drake, and More
December 31, 2014
With Rick, I think the culture just lags behind great artists much of the time, and it takes time for it to catch up.Coffee Talk with Ethan Hawke: On ‘Boyhood,’ Jennifer Lawrence, and Bill Clinton’s Urinal Exchange
December 27, 2014
In the last few years, the character has begun to catch on in America, even turning up on a recent episode of American Dad.Meet Krampus, the Seriously Bad Santa
December 5, 2014
Historical Examples of catch
The first thing I am going to do is to catch some fish, if you'll lend me your boat.Brave and Bold
She said all was cold in the church, and nothing to catch hold on there.
But every evening, towards bedtime, she came into the garden to catch Mimi.Life and Death of Harriett Frean
Of the Infinite the finite mind can only catch a finite glimpse.The Conquest of Fear
I catch a glimpse of the grandness of your sister's meaning.Ester Ried Yet Speaking
verb catches, catching or caught
- to grasp or attempt to grasp
- to take advantage (of), esp eagerlyhe caught at the chance
- a concealed, unexpected, or unforeseen drawback or handicap
- (as modifier)a catch question
Word Origin for catch
c.1200, "to take, capture," from Anglo-French or Old North French cachier "catch, capture" (animals) (Old French chacier "hunt, pursue, drive (animals)," Modern French chasser "to hunt;" making it a doublet of chase (v.)), from Vulgar Latin *captiare "try to seize, chase" (also source of Spanish cazar, Italian cacciare), from Latin captare "to take, hold," frequentative of Latin capere "to take, hold" (see capable).
Senses in early Middle English also included "chase, hunt," which later went with chase (v.). Of infections from 1540s; of fire from 1734; of sleep, etc., from early 14c. Related: Catched (obsolete); catching; caught.
Meaning "act as a catcher in baseball" recorded from 1865. To catch on "apprehend" is 1884, American English colloquial. To catch (someone's) eye is first attested 1813, in Jane Austen. Catch as catch can first attested late 14c.
late 14c., "device to hold a latch of a door," also "a trap;" also "a fishing vessel," from catch (v.). Meaning "action of catching" attested from 1570s. Meaning "that which is caught or worth catching" (later especially of spouses) is from 1590s. Sense of "hidden cost, qualification, etc." is slang first recorded 1855 in P.T. Barnum.
In addition to the idioms beginning with catch
- catch as catch can
- catch at
- catch a Tartar
- catch cold
- catch fire
- catch in the act
- catch it
- catch napping
- catch off guard
- catch on
- catch one's breath
- catch one's death (of cold)
- catch red-handed
- catch sight of
- catch someone's eye
- catch some rays
- catch some z's
- catch the drift
- catch up
- early bird catches the worm
- get (catch) the drift
- takes one to know one (a thief to catch a thief)
Also see undercaught.