See more synonyms for count on
verb (used with object)
  1. to check over (the separate units or groups of a collection) one by one to determine the total number; add up; enumerate: He counted his tickets and found he had ten.
  2. to reckon up; calculate; compute.
  3. to list or name the numerals up to: Close your eyes and count ten.
  4. to include in a reckoning; take into account: There are five of us here, counting me.
  5. to reckon to the credit of another; ascribe; impute.
  6. to consider or regard: He counted himself lucky to have survived the crash.
verb (used without object)
  1. to count the items of a collection one by one in order to determine the total: She counted three times before she was satisfied that none was missing.
  2. to list or name numerals in order: to count to 100 by fives.
  3. to reckon numerically.
  4. to have a specified numerical value.
  5. to be accounted or worth something: That first try didn't count—I was just practicing.
  6. to have merit, importance, value, etc.; deserve consideration: Every bit of help counts.
  7. to have worth; amount (usually followed by for): Intelligence counts for something.
  1. the act of counting; enumeration; reckoning; calculation: A count of hands showed 23 in favor and 16 opposed.
  2. the number representing the result of a process of counting; the total number.
  3. an accounting.
  4. Baseball. the number of balls and strikes, usually designated in that order, that have been called on a batter during a turn at bat: a count of two balls and one strike.
  5. Law. a distinct charge or theory of action in a declaration or indictment: He was found guilty on two counts of theft.
  6. Textiles.
    1. a number representing the size or quality of yarn, especially the number based on the relation of weight to length of the yarn and indicating its degree of coarseness.
    2. the number of warp and filling threads per square inch in woven material, representing the texture of the fabric.
  7. Bowling. the number of pins struck down by the first ball rolled by a bowler in the frame following a spare and included in the score for the frame in which the spare was made.
  8. Physics.
    1. a single ionizing reaction registered by an ionization chamber, as in a Geiger counter.
    2. the indication of the total number of ionizing reactions registered by an ionization chamber in a given period of time.
  9. Archaic. regard; notice.
  10. the count, Boxing. the calling aloud by the referee of the seconds from 1 to 10 while a downed boxer remains off his feet. Completion of the count signifies a knockout, which the referee then declares: A hard right sent the challenger down for the count.Also called the full count.
  1. noting a number of items determined by an actual count: The box is labeled 50 count.
Verb Phrases
  1. count down, to count backward, usually by ones, from a given integer to zero.
  2. count in, to include: If you're going to the beach, count me in.
  3. count off, (often used imperatively, as in the army) to count aloud by turns, as to arrange positions within a group of persons; divide or become divided into groups: Close up ranks and count off from the left by threes.
  4. count on/upon, to depend or rely on: You can always count on him to lend you money.
  5. count out,
    1. declare (a boxer) a loser because of inability to stand up before the referee has counted 10 seconds.
    2. to exclude: When it comes to mountain climbing, count me out.
    3. to count and apportion or give out: She counted out four cookies to each child.
    4. to disqualify (ballots) illegally in counting, in order to control the election.
  1. count coup. coup1(def 4).

Origin of count

1275–1325; (v.) Middle English counten < Anglo-French c(o)unter, Old French conter < Latin computāre to compute; (noun) Middle English counte < Anglo-French c(o)unte, Old French conte < Late Latin computus calculation, reckoning, noun derivative of computāre
Related formshalf-count·ed, adjective


  1. (in some European countries) a nobleman equivalent in rank to an English earl.

Origin of count

1375–1425; late Middle English counte < Anglo-French c(o)unte, Old French conte, comte < Late Latin comitem, accusative of comes honorary title of various imperial functionaries, Latin: retainer, staff member, literally, companion; see comes


  1. WilliamCount, 1904–84, U.S. jazz pianist, bandleader, and composer. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for count

Contemporary Examples of count

Historical Examples of count

  • "Count me in, please," said Blanche, in her usual vein of frankness.


    Thomas Wentworth Higginson

  • Their weight was too great not to count, but it counted first this way and then that.

    The Grand Old Man

    Richard B. Cook

  • It was in fact a little way beyond what she had come to count her limit.

    Weighed and Wanting

    George MacDonald

  • She says that her record of five years in your employ ought to count something in her favor.

    Within the Law

    Marvin Dana

  • Usually one might count on the woman's silence, her instinct for self-protection.


    Mary Roberts Rinehart

British Dictionary definitions for count


  1. to add up or check (each unit in a collection) in order to ascertain the sum; enumeratecount your change
  2. (tr) to recite numbers in ascending order up to and including
  3. (tr often foll by in) to take into account or includewe must count him in
  4. not counting excluding
  5. (tr) to believe to be; consider; think; deemcount yourself lucky
  6. (intr) to recite or list numbers in ascending order either in units or groupsto count in tens
  7. (intr) to have value, importance, or influencethis picture counts as a rarity
  8. (intr often foll by for) to have a certain specified value or importancethe job counts for a lot
  9. (intr) music to keep time by counting beats
  1. the act of counting or reckoning
  2. the number reached by counting; sum
  3. law a paragraph in an indictment containing a distinct and separate charge
  4. physics the total number of photons or ionized particles detected by a counter
  5. keep count to keep a record of items, events, etc
  6. lose count to fail to keep an accurate record of items, events, etc
  7. boxing wrestling the act of telling off a number of seconds by the referee, as when a boxer has been knocked down or a wrestler pinned by his opponent
  8. out for the count boxing knocked out and unable to continue after a count of ten by the referee
  9. take the count boxing to be unable to continue after a count of ten
  10. archaic notice; regard; account

Word Origin for count

C14: from Anglo-French counter, from Old French conter, from Latin computāre to calculate, compute


  1. a nobleman in any of various European countries having a rank corresponding to that of a British earl
  2. any of various officials in the late Roman Empire and under various Germanic kings in the early Middle Ages
  3. a man who has received an honour (papal knighthood) from the Pope in recognition of good deeds, achievements, etc
Derived Formscountship, noun

Word Origin for count

C16: from Old French conte, from Late Latin comes occupant of a state office, from Latin: overseer, associate, literally: one who goes with, from com- with + īre to go


  1. William, known as Count Basie . 1904–84, US jazz pianist, bandleader, and composer: associated particularly with the polished phrasing and style of big-band jazz
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 count

mid-14c., from Old French conter "add up," but also "tell a story," from Latin computare (see compute). Related: Counted; counting. Modern French differentiates compter "to count" and conter "to tell," but they are cognates.


title of nobility, c.1300, from Anglo-French counte (Old French conte), from Latin comitem (nominative comes) "companion, attendant," the Roman term for a provincial governor, from com- "with" (see com-) + stem of ire "to go" (see ion). The term was used in Anglo-French to render Old English eorl, but the word was never truly naturalized and mainly was used with reference to foreign titles.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

count in Medicine


  1. To name or list the units of a group or collection one by one in order to determine a total.
  1. The act of counting or calculating.
  2. The totality of specific items in a particular sample.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Idioms and Phrases with count


In addition to the idioms beginning with count

  • count against
  • count down
  • count for
  • count in
  • count noses
  • count off
  • count on
  • count one's chickens before they hatch
  • count out
  • count to ten

also see:

  • down for the count
  • every minute counts
  • out for (the count)
  • stand up and be counted
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.