seem

[seem]
See more synonyms for seem on Thesaurus.com
verb (used without object)
  1. to appear to be, feel, do, etc.: She seems better this morning.
  2. to appear to one's own senses, mind, observation, judgment, etc.: It seems to me that someone is calling.
  3. to appear to exist: There seems no need to go now.
  4. to appear to be true, probable, or evident: It seems likely to rain.
  5. to give the outward appearance of being or to pretend to be: He only seems friendly because he wants you to like him.

Origin of seem

1150–1200; Middle English seme < Old Norse sœma to befit, beseem, derivative of sœmr fitting, seemly; akin to sōmi honor

Synonyms for seem

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4. Seem, appear, look refer to an outward aspect that may or may not be contrary to reality. Seem is applied to something that has an aspect of truth and probability: It seems warmer today. Appear suggests the giving of an impression that may be superficial or illusory: The house appears to be deserted. Look more vividly suggests the use of the eye (literally or figuratively) or the aspect as perceived by the eye: She looked very much frightened.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018


Examples from the Web for seem

Contemporary Examples of seem

Historical Examples of seem

  • "He will look for me, and seem bewildered, as if something were lost," replied Philothea.

    Philothea

    Lydia Maria Child

  • The hearth bore a uniform appearance, and did not seem to have been tampered with.

    Brave and Bold

    Horatio Alger

  • To the adventurer from New York they seem always new and crude.

    The Spenders

    Harry Leon Wilson

  • His grasp did not bruise, it did not seem to be tight; but the hand that held it was immovable.

    The Spenders

    Harry Leon Wilson

  • Mrs. Bines declared that it did seem to her very much like out-and-out gambling.

    The Spenders

    Harry Leon Wilson


British Dictionary definitions for seem

seem

verb (may take an infinitive)
  1. (copula) to appear to the mind or eye; lookthis seems nice; the car seems to be running well
  2. to give the impression of existing; appear to bethere seems no need for all this nonsense
  3. used to diminish the force of a following infinitive to be polite, more noncommittal, etcI can't seem to get through to you
Derived Formsseemer, noun

Word Origin for seem

C12: perhaps from Old Norse soma to beseem, from sœmr befitting; related to Old English sēman to reconcile; see same

xref

See like 1
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 seem
v.

c.1200, "to appear to be;" c.1300, "to be fitting, be appropriate, be suitable," though the more recent sense in English is the etymological one; from Old Norse soema "to honor; to put up with; to conform to (the world, etc.)," verb derived from adjective soemr "fitting," from Proto-Germanic *somi- (cf. Old English som "agreement, reconciliation," seman "to conciliate," source of Middle English semen "to settle a dispute," literally "to make one;" Old Danish some "to be proper or seemly"), from PIE *som-i-, from root *sem- "one, as one" (see same). Related: Seemed; seeming.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper