To comprehend something is to understand it, like when you have to read a difficult passage more than once in order to comprehend it.

When you comprehend something, you grasp its meaning. Comprehend is a verb that originates from the Latin word comprehendere, which means “catch or seize.” When an idea is clear to you and you understand it completely, you comprehend it, like doing extra problems to make sure you comprehend a difficult algebra rule, or finding it hard to comprehend why someone would paint his house neon yellow.

Definitions of comprehend
  1. verb
    get the meaning of something
    “Do you comprehend the meaning of this letter?”
    synonyms: apprehend, compass, dig, get the picture, grasp, grok, savvy
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    catch on, cotton on, get it, get onto, get wise, latch on, tumble, twig
    understand, usually after some initial difficulty
    know or grasp by intuition or feeling
    digest, process
    arrange and integrate in the mind
    type of:
    know and comprehend the nature or meaning of
  2. verb
    become aware of through the senses
    synonyms: perceive
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    feel, sense
    perceive by a physical sensation, e.g., coming from the skin or muscles
    perceive in terms of a past experience
    pick up, receive
    register (perceptual input)
    perceive intuitively or through some inexplicable perceptive powers
    perceive what is not there; have illusions
    perceive incorrectly
    catch, pick up
    perceive with the senses quickly, suddenly, or momentarily
    experience while sleeping
    ache, hurt, suffer
    feel physical pain
    inhale the odor of; perceive by the olfactory sense
    perceive via the tactile sense
    perceive by sight or have the power to perceive by sight
    sight, spy
    catch sight of; to perceive with the eyes
    perceive (sound) via the auditory sense
    hear with intention
    perceive by the sense of taste
    perceive oneself to be in a certain condition or place
    see through
    perceive the true nature of
    receive a communication from someone
    divine by reading someone's palms
    catch, get
    suffer from the receipt of
    catch a glimpse of or see briefly
    feel a sudden sharp, local pain
    prick, sting, twinge
    cause a stinging pain
    sniff, whiff
    perceive by inhaling through the nose
    nose, scent, wind
    catch the scent of; get wind of
    snuff, snuffle
    sniff or smell inquiringly
    get a noseful, get a whiff
    smell strongly and intensely
    see and understand, have a good eye
    catch a glimpse, catch sight, get a look
    see something for a brief time
    behold, lay eyes on
    see with attention
    see double
    see things as if they were there twice
    descry, espy, spot, spy
    catch sight of
    detect, discover, find, notice, observe
    discover or determine the existence, presence, or fact of
    hear out
    listen to every detail and give a full hearing to
    listen in
    listen quietly, without contributing to the conversation
    advert, attend, give ear, hang, pay heed
    give heed (to)
    catch, overhear, take in
    hear, usually without the knowledge of the speakers
    catch, get
    perceive by hearing
    hark, harken, hearken
    listen; used mostly in the imperative
    eavesdrop, listen in
    listen without the speaker's knowledge
    savor, savour
    taste appreciatively
    be the source of great pain for
  3. verb
    include in scope; include as part of something broader; have as one's sphere or territory
    synonyms: cover, embrace, encompass
    address, cover, deal, handle, plow, treat
    act on verbally or in some form of artistic expression
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    type of:
    have as a part; be made up out of
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