verb (used without object)
verb (used with object)
- 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.
- to be cautious.
- to practice discretion or self-restraint.
Origin of watch
Synonyms for watch
Related Words for watchedfollowed, minded, noticed, marked, noted, scrutinized, bugged, spied, vigilant, watchful, surveillant
Examples from the Web for watched
Contemporary Examples of watched
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
January 7, 2015
In Rwanda, as we watched the young fathers hold their babies, we saw a contented look in their eyes.How Good Dads Can Change the World
Gary Barker, PhD, Michael Kaufman
January 6, 2015
Those who have watched anti-gay groups closely suggest that there will be two major strategic shifts in their strategy.‘Only God’ Can Stop Gay Marriage
January 6, 2015
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’
January 2, 2015
Mrs. Douli then watched her husband go under water for the last time.‘We’re Going to Die’: Survivors Recount Greek Ferry Fire Horror
Barbie Latza Nadeau
December 29, 2014
Historical Examples of watched
Percival watched the decline with a conviction that he was dreaming.
For an hour he watched her, feeling the arm on which she lay growing numb.
He watched her, while she narrowed her eyes in deep thought.
I have watched them cover their tracks with a cunning more than vulpine.'Tis Sixty Years Since
Charles Francis Adams
The horses would not feed last night, and had to be watched.Explorations in Australia
- a small portable timepiece, usually worn strapped to the wrist (a wristwatch) or in a waistcoat pocket
- (as modifier)a watch spring
- 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
Word Origin for watch
Old English wæcce "a watching," from wæccan (see watch (v.)). Sense of "sentinel" is recorded from c.1300; that of "person or group officially patroling a town (especially at night) to keep order, etc." is first recorded 1530s. Meaning "period of time in which a division of a ship's crew remains on deck" is from 1580s. Sense of "period into which a night was divided in ancient times" translates Latin vigilia, Greek phylake, Hebrew ashmoreth.
The Hebrews divided the night into three watches, the Greeks usually into four (sometimes five), the Romans (followed by the Jews in New Testament times) into four. [OED]
The meaning "small timepiece" is from 1580s, developing from that of "a clock to wake up sleepers" (mid-15c.).
Old English wæccan "keep watch, be awake," from Proto-Germanic *wakojan; essentially the same word as Old English wacian "be or remain awake" (see wake (v.)); perhaps a Northumbrian form. Meaning "be vigilant" is from c.1200. That of "to guard (someone or some place), stand guard" is late 14c. Sense of "to observe, keep under observance" is mid-15c. Related: Watched; watching.
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)