happen

[ hap-uhn ]
/ ˈhæp ən /

verb (used without object)

Origin of happen

First recorded in 1300–50, happen is from the Middle English word hap(pe)nen. See hap1, -en1

synonym study for happen

1. Happen, chance, occur refer to the taking place of an event. Happen, which originally denoted the taking place by hap or chance, is now the most general word for coming to pass: Something has happened. Chance suggests the accidental nature of an event: It chanced to rain that day. Occur is often interchangeable with happen, but is more formal, and is usually more specific as to time and event: His death occurred the following year.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for happen

British Dictionary definitions for happen

happen
/ (ˈhæpən) /

verb

(intr) (of an event in time) to come about or take place; occur
(intr foll by to) (of some unforeseen circumstance or event, esp death), to fall to the lot (of); be a source of good or bad fortune (to)if anything happens to me, it'll be your fault
(tr) to chance (to be or do something)I happen to know him
(tr; takes a clause as object) to be the case, esp if by chance, thatit happens that I know him

adverb, sentence substitute

Northern English dialect
  1. another word for perhaps
  2. (as sentence modifier)happen I'll see thee tomorrow

Word Origin for happen

C14: see hap 1, -en 1

undefined happen

See occur
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