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listen

[ lis-uhn ]
/ ˈlɪs ən /
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See synonyms for: listen / listened / listening / listener on Thesaurus.com

verb (used without object)

to give attention with the ear; attend closely for the purpose of hearing; give ear.
to pay attention; heed; obey (often followed by to): Children don't always listen to their parents.
to wait attentively for a sound (usually followed by for): to listen for sounds of their return.
Informal. to convey a particular impression to the hearer; sound: The new recording doesn't listen as well as the old one.

verb (used with object)

Archaic. to give ear to; hear.

Verb Phrases

listen in,
  1. to listen to a radio or television broadcast: Listen in tomorrow for the names of the lottery winners.
  2. to overhear a conversation or communication, especially by telephone; eavesdrop: Someone was listening in to his private calls.

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WATCH NOW: What Is The Difference Between The Words "Hear" And "Listen"?

See, everybody says they want to be heard. But, in actuality, they want to be listened to.

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Origin of listen

before 950; Middle English lis(t)nen, Old English hlysnan; cognate with Middle High German lüsenen, Swedish lyssna; akin to list5

synonym study for listen

1. See hear.

OTHER WORDS FROM listen

lis·ten·er, nounre·lis·ten, verbun·lis·ten·ing, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

How to use listen in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for listen

listen
/ (ˈlɪsən) /

verb (intr)

to concentrate on hearing something
to take heed; pay attentionI told you many times but you wouldn't listen

Derived forms of listen

listener, noun

Word Origin for listen

Old English hlysnan; related to Old High German lūstrēn
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
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