watch

When you watch something, you observe it or guard it — like when you watch the latest episode of your favorite television show or when you watch your baby cousin.

You use the word watch (rather than look) when you'll be observing for a while, and with some care. If you agree to watch your neighbor's puppy, it means that you've promised to observe him carefully and make sure he doesn't get into trouble. When watch is a noun, it is the timepiece you wear on your wrist. Many people use their cell phones to get the time of day, instead of their watches.

Definitions of watch
  1. verb
    look attentively
    watch a basketball game”
    see moresee less
    types:
    show 14 types...
    hide 14 types...
    witness
    be a witness to
    rubberneck
    strain to watch; stare curiously
    catch, see, take in, view
    see or watch
    observe
    watch attentively
    bird, birdwatch
    watch and study birds in their natural habitat
    eyewitness
    be present at an event and see it with one's own eyes
    visualise, visualize
    view the outline of by means of an X-ray
    spectate
    be a spectator in a sports event
    preview
    watch (a movie or play) before it is released to the general public
    monitor, supervise
    keep tabs on; keep an eye on; keep under surveillance
    monitor
    check, track, or observe by means of a receiver
    reconnoiter, reconnoitre, scout
    explore, often with the goal of finding something or somebody
    track
    observe or plot the moving path of something
    preview
    see or inspect in a preliminary way or in advance
  2. verb
    observe with attention
    “They watched as the murderer was executed”
    synonyms: look on
    see moresee less
    types:
    sit back, sit by
    be inactive or indifferent while something is happening
  3. verb
    see or watch
    synonyms: catch, see, take in, view
    see
    perceive by sight or have the power to perceive by sight
    see moresee less
    types:
    show 5 types...
    hide 5 types...
    visualise, visualize
    view the outline of by means of an X-ray
    spectate
    be a spectator in a sports event
    preview
    watch (a movie or play) before it is released to the general public
    preview
    see or inspect in a preliminary way or in advance
    image
    render visible, as by means of MRI
  4. verb
    follow with the eyes or the mind
    “The world is watching Sarajevo”
    synonyms: follow, keep an eye on, observe, watch over
    follow, trace
    follow, discover, or ascertain the course of development of something
    see moresee less
    types:
    show 7 types...
    hide 7 types...
    keep tabs on
    keep a record on or watch attentively
    guard
    keep watch over
    invigilate, proctor
    watch over (students taking an exam, to prevent cheating)
    patrol, police
    maintain the security of by carrying out a patrol
    keep guard, stand guard, stand sentinel, stand watch
    watch over so as to protect
    baby-sit, sit
    work or act as a baby-sitter
    baby-sit
    take watchful responsibility for
    type of:
    check, check into, check out, check over, check up on, go over, look into, suss out
    examine so as to determine accuracy, quality, or condition
  5. verb
    be vigilant, be on the lookout or be careful
    Watch out for pickpockets!”
    synonyms: look out, watch out
    see moresee less
    types:
    beware, mind
    be on one's guard; be cautious or wary about; be alert to
    keep one's eyes open, keep one's eyes peeled, keep one's eyes skinned
    pay attention; be watchful
    look after
    keep under careful scrutiny
  6. verb
    observe or determine by looking
    Watch how the dog chases the cats away”
  7. verb
    find out, learn, or determine with certainty, usually by making an inquiry or other effort
    synonyms: ascertain, check, determine, find out, learn, see
    ascertain, assure, check, control, ensure, insure, see, see to it
    be careful or certain to do something; make certain of something
    ascertain, determine, find, find out
    establish after a calculation, investigation, experiment, survey, or study
    see moresee less
    types:
    test
    determine the presence or properties of (a substance)
  8. noun
    a purposeful surveillance to guard or observe
    synonyms: vigil
    see moresee less
    types:
    continuous receiver watch, listening watch
    a watch established for the reception of traffic of interest to the unit maintaining the watch
    spying
    keeping a secret or furtive watch
    type of:
    surveillance
    close observation of a person or group (usually by the police)
  9. noun
    the period during which someone (especially a guard) is on duty
    see moresee less
    type of:
    period, period of time, time period
    an amount of time
  10. noun
    a period of time (4 or 2 hours) during which some of a ship's crew are on duty
    see moresee less
    types:
    dogwatch
    either of two short watches: from 4-6 pm or 6-8 pm
    graveyard watch, middle watch, midwatch, night watch
    a watch during the night (as from midnight to 8 a.m.)
    type of:
    duty period, shift, work shift
    the time period during which you are at work
  11. noun
    a person employed to keep watch for some anticipated event
  12. noun
    a small portable timepiece
    synonyms: ticker
    see moresee less
    types:
    show 7 types...
    hide 7 types...
    analog watch
    a watch that represents time by the position of hands on a dial
    digital watch
    a watch with a digital display
    hunter, hunting watch
    a watch with a hinged metal lid to protect the crystal
    pendulum watch
    (18th century) a watch with a balance wheel having a fake pendulum attached to it
    pocket watch
    a watch that is carried in a small watch pocket
    stem-winder
    a watch that is wound by turning a knob at the stem
    wrist watch, wristwatch
    a watch that is worn strapped to the wrist
    type of:
    horologe, timekeeper, timepiece
    a measuring instrument or device for keeping time
  13. noun
    the rite of staying awake for devotional purposes (especially on the eve of a religious festival)
    synonyms: vigil
    see moresee less
    types:
    viewing, wake
    a vigil held over a corpse the night before burial
    agrypnia
    a vigil before certain feasts (as e.g. Easter)
    type of:
    religious rite, rite
    an established ceremony prescribed by a religion
Word Family