verb (used with object)
Origin of alert
Synonyms for alert
Antonyms for alert
Related Words for on the alertalive, astir, attentive, careful, heedful, observant, sleepless, vigilant, waking, wary, watchful, wide-awake, insomniac, awake
adjective (usually postpositive)
- on guard against danger, attack, etc
- watchful; readyon the alert for any errors
Word Origin for alert
"on the watch," 1590s, from French alerte "vigilant" (17c.), from phrase à l'erte "on the watch," from Italian all'erta "to the height," from erta "lookout, high tower," noun use of fem. of erto, past participle of ergere "raise up," from Latin erigere "raise" (see erect). The adjective is attested from 1610s, the noun from 1803, and the verb from 1868. Related: Alerted; alerting.
on the alert
Watchful, fully prepared, as in The inspectors are always on the alert for a manufacturing error. [Late 1700s]
see on the alert.