[ lis-uh n ]
/ ˈlɪs ən /
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.
- to listen to a radio or television broadcast: Listen in tomorrow for the names of the lottery winners.
- to overhear a conversation or communication, especially by telephone; eavesdrop: Someone was listening in to his private calls.
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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
SYNONYMS FOR listen
1 See hear.
OTHER WORDS FROM listenlis·ten·er, nounre·lis·ten, verbun·lis·ten·ing, adjective
Words nearby listen
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020
British Dictionary definitions for relisten
/ (ˈlɪsən) /
to concentrate on hearing something
to take heed; pay attentionI told you many times but you wouldn't listen
Derived forms of listenlistener, 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