• synonyms


verb (used with object), mem·o·rized, mem·o·riz·ing.
  1. to commit to memory; learn by heart: to memorize a poem.
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verb (used without object), mem·o·rized, mem·o·riz·ing.
  1. to learn by heart: I've always been able to memorize easily.
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Also especially British, mem·o·rise.

Origin of memorize

First recorded in 1585–95; memor(y) + -ize
Related formsmem·o·riz·a·ble, adjectivemem·o·ri·za·tion, nounmem·o·riz·er, nounre·mem·o·rize, verb (used with object), re·mem·o·rized, re·mem·o·riz·ing.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for memorise

Historical Examples

  • To some it is an easier method than the cards, there is less to memorise, or the crystal.

    Telling Fortunes by Tea Leaves

    Cicely Kent

  • There followed a tongue-twisting sentence, which I tried to memorise.

    Caught by the Turks

    Francis Yeats-Brown

  • "Horatius at the Bridge" is too long a poem for children to memorise.

  • He can memorise at sight all the revolting contents of a swill-tub.

  • It is necessary that the sharp who practises it should be able to memorise instantly as many cards as possible.

    Sharps and Flats

    John Nevil Maskelyne

British Dictionary definitions for memorise



  1. (tr) to commit to memory; learn so as to remember
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Derived Formsmemorizable or memorisable, adjectivememorization or memorisation, nounmemorizer or memoriser, 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

Word Origin and History for memorise


chiefly British English spelling of memorize; for suffix, see -ize. Related: Memorialised; memorialising.

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1590s, "commit to writing;" see memory + -ize. The meaning "commit to memory" is from 1838. Related: Memorized; memorizing.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper