verb (used with object), saw, seen, see·ing.

verb (used without object), saw, seen, see·ing.

Verb Phrases

Nearby words

  1. seductress,
  2. sedulity,
  3. sedulous,
  4. sedulously,
  5. sedum,
  6. see a man about a dog,
  7. see about,
  8. see after,
  9. see beyond one's nose,
  10. see daylight

Origin of see

before 900; Middle English seen, Old English sēon; cognate with Dutch zien, German sehen, Old Norse sjā, Gothic saihwan

1. observe, notice, distinguish, discern, behold, regard. See watch. 5. comprehend, penetrate. 10. determine. 11. know, undergo. 18. accompany.

Related formssee·a·ble, adjectivesee·a·ble·ness, nounun·see·a·ble, adjective



noun Ecclesiastical.

the seat, center of authority, office, or jurisdiction of a bishop.

Origin of see

1250–1300; Middle English se(e) < Old French se (variant of sie) < Latin sēdes seat Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for see

British Dictionary definitions for see



verb sees, seeing, saw or seen

to perceive with the eyes
(when tr, may take a clause as object) to perceive (an idea) mentally; understandI explained the problem but he could not see it
(tr) to perceive with any or all of the sensesI hate to see you so unhappy
(tr; may take a clause as object) to be aware of in advance; foreseeI can see what will happen if you don't help
(when tr, may take a clause as object) to ascertain or find out (a fact); learnsee who is at the door
(when tr, takes a clause as object; when intr, foll by to) to make sure (of something) or take care (of something)see that he gets to bed early
(when tr, may take a clause as object) to consider, deliberate, or decidesee if you can come next week
(tr) to have experience of; undergohe had seen much unhappiness in his life
(tr) to allow to be in a specified conditionI cannot stand by and see a child in pain
(tr) to be characterized bythis period of history has seen much unrest
(tr) to meet or pay a visit toto see one's solicitor
(tr) to receive, esp as a guest or visitorthe Prime Minister will see the deputation now
(tr) to frequent the company ofshe is seeing a married man
(tr) to accompany or escortI saw her to the door
(tr) to refer to or look upfor further information see the appendix
(in gambling, esp in poker) to match (another player's bet) or match the bet of (another player) by staking an equal sum
as far as I can see to the best of my judgment or understanding
see fit (takes an infinitive) to consider proper, desirable, etcI don't see fit to allow her to come here
see someone hanged first or see someone damned first informal to refuse absolutely to do what one has been asked
see someone right British informal to ensure fair treatment of (someone)if he has cheated you, I'll see you right
see the light or see the light of day See light 1 (def. 24)
see you, see you later or be seeing you an expression of farewell
you see informal a parenthetical filler phrase used to make a pause in speaking or add slight emphasis

Derived Formsseeable, adjective

Word Origin for see

Old English sēon; related to Old Norse sjā, Gothic saihwan, Old Saxon sehan


the diocese of a bishop, or the place within it where his cathedral or procathedral is situatedSee also Holy See

Word Origin for see

C13: from Old French sed, from Latin sēdēs a seat; related to sedēre to sit

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 see
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with see


In addition to the idioms beginning with see

  • see about
  • see after
  • see a man about a dog
  • see beyond one's nose
  • see daylight
  • see double
  • see eye to eye
  • see fit
  • seeing is believing
  • seeing that
  • seeing things
  • see into
  • seen better days, have
  • seen one, seen them all
  • see one's way to
  • see out
  • see reason
  • see red
  • see someone off
  • see stars
  • see the back of
  • see the color of one's money
  • see the elephant
  • see the last of
  • see the light
  • see the light of day
  • see the sights
  • see things
  • see through
  • see through rose-colored glasses
  • see to
  • see with half an eye

also see:

  • as far as I can see
  • begin to see daylight
  • can't see beyond the end of one's nose
  • can't see the forest for the trees
  • I'll be seeing you
  • I see
  • let me see
  • long time no see
  • so I see
  • wait and see

Also see underseen.

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