to be alertly on the lookout, look attentively, or observe, as to see what comes, is done, or happens: to watch while an experiment is performed.
to look or wait attentively and expectantly (usually followed by for): to watch for a signal; to watch for an opportunity.
to be careful or cautious: Watch when you cross the street.
to keep awake, especially for a purpose; remain vigilant, as for protection or safekeeping: to watch with a sick person.
to keep vigil, as for devotional purposes.
to keep guard: She was assigned to watch at the door.
to keep under attentive view or observation, as in order to see or learn something; view attentively or with interest: to watch a play; to watch a football game.
to contemplate or regard mentally: to watch his progress.
to look or wait attentively and expectantly for: to watch one's opportunity.
to guard, tend, or oversee, especially for protection or safekeeping: to watch the baby.
close, continuous observation for the purpose of seeing or discovering something: Their watch for the birds was unrewarding.
vigilant guard, as for protection or restraint: to keep watch for prowlers.
a keeping awake for some special purpose: a watch beside a sickbed.
a period of time for watching or keeping guard: to stand the first watch.
a small, portable timepiece, as a wrist watch or pocket watch.
a period of time, usually four hours, during which one part of a ship's crew is on duty, taking turns with another part.
the officers and crew who attend to the working of a ship for an allotted period of time.
one of the periods, usually three or four, into which the night was divided in ancient times, as by the Greeks or Hebrews: the fourth watch of the night.
a person or group that watches, as a lookout, guard, or sentinel: A watch was posted at sunset.
Also called storm watch. Meteorology. an announcement from the U.S. National Weather Service alerting the public that dangerous weather conditions are a possibility and that vigilance and precautionary preparations are advised: hurricane watch;tornado watch.: Compare advisory (def. 5), warning (def. 3).
a flock of nightingales.
watch out, to be on one's guard; be cautious: Watch out for cars when you cross the road.
watch over, to guard for protection or safekeeping: She watched over us like a mother hen over her brood.
Idioms about watch
- un·watched, adjective
- un·watch·ing, adjective
- well-watched, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use watch in a sentence
Until his incompetence affects her directly — say, with a sudden mass exodus of burned-out employees or a significant failure on his watch — she has little incentive to make further effort.It’s hard to get rid of a bad boss. Instead, try a ‘soft coup.’ | Karla Miller | November 19, 2020 | Washington Post
Rebuilding Paradise is still a worthwhile watch for its emotional impact.
The watch also isn’t designed to work for an indoor pool swim in triathlon mode.This new workout watch can tell when you switch activities | Rob Verger | November 17, 2020 | Popular-Science
The National Weather Service is considering issuing a flood watch for the region.Heavy rain and isolated flooding forecast for Washington region Wednesday into Thursday | Jeffrey Halverson, Jason Samenow | November 10, 2020 | Washington Post
The achilles heel of such robust watches is usually battery life, but Garmin addresses that with a glass lens that can keep it going for more than ten days on three hours of sunlight per day.
Empire will be hate-watched and may set off some conversations on its way from fading from our minds.‘Empire’ Review: Hip-Hop Musical Chairs with an Insane Soap Opera Twist | Judnick Mayard | January 8, 2015 | THE DAILY BEAST
I watched SNL—the Eddie Murphy generation—and also SCTV with Rick Moranis.Coffee Talk with Fred Armisen: On ‘Portlandia,’ Meeting Obama, and Taylor Swift’s Greatness | Marlow Stern | January 7, 2015 | THE DAILY BEAST
In Rwanda, as we watched the young fathers hold their babies, we saw a contented look in their eyes.
Those who have watched anti-gay groups closely suggest that there will be two major strategic shifts in their strategy.
Because I was living with this story, I watched closely as Hollywood considered making a film about Selma.Dr. King Goes to Hollywood: The Flawed History of ‘Selma’ | Gary May | January 2, 2015 | THE DAILY BEAST
The bear watched him narrowly with its wicked little eyes, though it did not see fit to cease its paw-licking.The Giant of the North | R.M. Ballantyne
Felipe watched over her as a lover might; her great mournful eyes followed his every motion.Ramona | Helen Hunt Jackson
There was a deep silence throughout the whole bivouac; some were sleeping, and those who watched were in no humour for idle chat.
The two were standing together before the fire; Bernard watched Mrs. Vivian close the door softly behind her.Confidence | Henry James
The mother played her accompaniments and at the same time watched her daughter with greedy admiration and nervous apprehension.The Awakening and Selected Short Stories | Kate Chopin
British Dictionary definitions for watch (1 of 2)
to look at or observe closely or attentively
(intr foll by for) to wait attentively or expectantly
to guard or tend (something) closely or carefully
(intr) to keep vigil
(tr) to maintain an interest in: to watch the progress of a child at school
watch it! be careful! look out!
a small portable timepiece, usually worn strapped to the wrist (a wristwatch) or in a waistcoat pocket
(as modifier): a watch spring
the act or an instance of watching
a period of vigil, esp during the night
(formerly) one of a set of periods of any of various lengths into which the night was divided
any of the usually four-hour periods beginning at midnight and again at noon during which part of a ship's crew are on duty
those officers and crew on duty during a specified watch
the period during which a guard is on duty
(formerly) a watchman or band of watchmen
on the watch on the lookout; alert
- See also watch out
British Dictionary definitions for -watch (2 of 2)
indicating a regular television programme or newspaper feature on the topic specified: Crimewatch
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
Other Idioms and Phrases with watch
In addition to the idioms beginning with watch
- watched pot never boils, a
- watch it
- watch like a hawk
- watch my dust
- watch one's step
- watch out
- watch over
- keep watch
- look (watch) out
- on the lookout (watch)
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.