• synonyms


verb (used with object)
  1. to understand the nature or meaning of; grasp with the mind; perceive: He did not comprehend the significance of the ambassador's remark.
  2. to take in or embrace; include; comprise: The course will comprehend all facets of Japanese culture.
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Origin of comprehend

1350–1400; Middle English comprehenden < Latin comprehendere, equivalent to com- com- + prehendere to grasp; see prehensile
Related formscom·pre·hend·er, nouncom·pre·hend·ing·ly, adverbnon·com·pre·hend·ing, adjectivenon·com·pre·hend·ing·ly, adverbpre·com·pre·hend, verb (used with object)self-com·pre·hend·ing, adjectiveun·com·pre·hend·ed, adjectiveun·com·pre·hend·ing, adjectiveun·com·pre·hend·ing·ly, adverbwell-com·pre·hend·ed, adjective
Can be confusedapprehend comprehend

Synonyms for comprehend

1. See know1. 2. See include.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for comprehended

envision, assimilate, appreciate, fathom, grasp, discern, embody, embrace, tumble, apprehend, conceive, dig, perceive, catch, see, read, know, have, savvy, envisage

Examples from the Web for comprehended

Contemporary Examples of comprehended

Historical Examples of comprehended

  • He read between the lines, and comprehended the hidden meaning at once.

  • She comprehended only too well that it was not that alone which had crushed her.


    Mr. and Mrs. Haldeman-Julius

  • How shall those beauties be valued, which cannot be comprehended?

    Clarissa, Volume 2 (of 9)

    Samuel Richardson

  • The glance with which she comprehended the renovated shop was bitter with contempt.

    The Fortune Hunter

    Louis Joseph Vance

  • "Yes," was the answer, as Bart comprehended what Sandy meant.

British Dictionary definitions for comprehended


  1. to perceive or understand
  2. (tr) to comprise or embrace; include
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Word Origin for comprehend

C14: from Latin comprehendere, from prehendere to seize
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

Word Origin and History for comprehended



mid-14c., "to understand," from Latin comprehendere "to take together, to unite; include; seize" (of catching fire or the arrest of criminals); also "to comprehend, perceive" (to seize or take in the mind), from com- "completely" (see com-) + prehendere "to catch hold of, seize" (see prehensile). Related: Comprehended; comprehending.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper