[ heer ]
See synonyms for: hearheardhearinghearable on Thesaurus.com

verb (used with object),heard [hurd], /hɜrd/, hear·ing.
  1. to perceive by the ear: Didn't you hear the doorbell?

  2. to learn by the ear or by being told; be informed of: to hear news.

  1. to listen to; give or pay attention to: They refused to hear our side of the argument.

  2. to be among the audience at or of (something): to hear a recital.

  3. to give a formal, official, or judicial hearing to (something); consider officially, as a judge, sovereign, teacher, or assembly: to hear a case.

  4. to take or listen to the evidence or testimony of (someone): to hear the defendant.

  5. to listen to with favor, assent, or compliance.

  6. (of a computer) to perceive by speech recognition.

verb (used without object),heard [hurd], /hɜrd/, hear·ing.
  1. to be capable of perceiving sound by the ear; have the faculty of perceiving sound vibrations.

  2. to receive information by the ear or otherwise: to hear from a friend.

  1. to listen with favor, assent, or compliance (often followed by of): I will not hear of your going.

  2. (of a computer) to be capable of perceiving by speech recognition.

  3. (used as an interjection in the phrase Hear! Hear! to express approval, as of a speech.)

Origin of hear

First recorded before 950; Middle English heren, Old English hēran, hīeran; cognate with Dutch horen, German hören, Old Norse heyra, Gothic hausjan; perhaps akin to Greek akoúein (see acoustic)

synonym study For hear

1, 2. Hear, listen apply to the perception of sound. To hear is to have such perception by means of the auditory sense: to hear distant bells. To listen is to give attention in order to hear and understand the meaning of a sound or sounds: to listen to what is being said; to listen for a well-known footstep.

Other words for hear

Opposites for hear

Other words from hear

  • hear·a·ble, adjective
  • hear·er, noun
  • out·hear, verb (used with object), out·heard, out·hear·ing.
  • re·hear, verb, re·heard, re·hear·ing.
  • un·hear·a·ble, adjective

Words that may be confused with hear

Words Nearby hear

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use hear in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for hear


/ (hɪə) /

verbhears, hearing or heard (hɜːd)
  1. (tr) to perceive (a sound) with the sense of hearing

  2. (tr; may take a clause as object) to listen to: did you hear what I said?

  1. (when intr, sometimes foll by of or about; when tr, may take a clause as object) to be informed (of); receive information (about): to hear of his success; have you heard?

  2. law to give a hearing to (a case)

  3. (when intr, usually foll by of and used with a negative) to listen (to) with favour, assent, etc: she wouldn't hear of it

  4. (intr foll by from) to receive a letter, news, etc (from)

  5. hear! hear! an exclamation used to show approval of something said

  6. hear tell dialect to be told (about); learn (of)

Origin of hear

Old English hieran; related to Old Norse heyra, Gothic hausjan, Old High German hōren, Greek akouein

Derived forms of hear

  • hearable, adjective
  • hearer, noun

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

Other Idioms and Phrases with hear


In addition to the idioms beginning with hear

  • hear a peep out of
  • hear a pin drop, can
  • hear from
  • hear of
  • hear oneself think, can't
  • hear out

also see:

  • another county heard from
  • hard of hearing
  • never hear the end of
  • not have it (hear of it)
  • unheard of

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.