Perceive Per*ceive", v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Perceived}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Perceiving}.] [OF. percevoir, perceveir, L. percipere, perceptum; per (see {Per-}) + capere to take, receive. See {Capacious}, and cf. {Perception}.] 1. To obtain knowledge of through the senses; to receive impressions from by means of the bodily organs; to take cognizance of the existence, character, or identity of, by means of the senses; to see, hear, or feel; as, to perceive a distant ship; to perceive a discord. --Reid. [1913 Webster]

2. To take intellectual cognizance of; to apprehend by the mind; to be convinced of by direct intuition; to note; to remark; to discern; to see; to understand. [1913 Webster]

Jesus perceived their wickedness. --Matt. xxii. 18. [1913 Webster]

You may, fair lady, Perceive I speak sincerely. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

Till we ourselves see it with our own eyes, and perceive it by our own understandings, we are still in the dark. --Locke. [1913 Webster]

3. To be affected of influented by. [R.] [1913 Webster]

The upper regions of the air perceive the collection of the matter of tempests before the air here below. --Bacon. [1913 Webster]

Syn: To discern; distinguish; observe; see; feel; know; understand.

Usage: To {Perceive}, {Discern}. To perceive a thing is to apprehend it as presented to the senses or the intellect; to discern is to mark differences, or to see a thing as distinguished from others around it. We may perceive two persons afar off without being able to discern whether they are men or women. Hence, discern is often used of an act of the senses or the mind involving close, discriminating, analytical attention. We perceive that which is clear or obvious; we discern that which requires much attention to get an idea of it. ``We perceive light, darkness, colors, or the truth or falsehood of anything. We discern characters, motives, the tendency and consequences of actions, etc.'' --Crabb. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.


Look at other dictionaries:

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  • perceive — [v1] notice, see apperceive, apprehend, be aware of, behold, descry, discern, discover, distinguish, divine, espy, feel, grasp, identify, look, make out, mark, mind, note, observe, realize, recognize, regard, remark, seize, sense, spot, spy,… …   New thesaurus

  • perceive — (v.) c.1300, via Anglo Fr. parceif, O.N.Fr. *perceivre (O.Fr. perçoivre), from L. percipere obtain, gather, also, metaphorically, to grasp with the mind, lit. to take entirely, from per thoroughly (see PER (Cf. per)) + capere to grasp, take (see …   Etymology dictionary

  • perceive — discern, note, remark, notice, observe, contemplate, *see, behold, descry, espy, view, survey Analogous words: grasp, seize, *take: *apprehend, comprehend: *enter, penetrate, pierce, probe …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • perceive — ► VERB 1) become aware or conscious of through the senses. 2) regard as. DERIVATIVES perceivable adjective perceiver noun. ORIGIN Old French perçoivre, from Latin percipere seize, understand …   English terms dictionary

  • perceive — [pər sēv′] vt., vi. perceived, perceiving [ME perceyven < OFr perceivre < L percipere, to take hold of, feel, comprehend < per, through + capere, to take: see HAVE] 1. to grasp mentally; take note (of); observe 2. to become aware (of)… …   English World dictionary

  • perceive — 01. Unfortunately, many second language students seem to [perceive] language learning as something that can be achieved in a few months, whereas in reality, it is a life long process. 02. Children do not always [perceive] the relationship between …   Grammatical examples in English

  • perceive — verb (transitive not in progressive) 1 to understand or think of something in a particular way: perceive that: People now perceive that green issues are important to our future. | perceive sth as sth: Holly began to perceive her father as a loser …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

  • perceive */*/ — UK [pə(r)ˈsiːv] / US [pərˈsɪv] verb [transitive] Word forms perceive : present tense I/you/we/they perceive he/she/it perceives present participle perceiving past tense perceived past participle perceived 1) [often passive] to understand or think …   English dictionary

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