Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

appear

play
verb ap·pear \ə-ˈpir\

Definition of appear

  1. intransitive verb
  2. 1 a :  to be or come in sight <the sun appears on the horizon> b :  to show up <appears promptly at eight each day>

  3. 2 :  to come formally before an authoritative body <must appear in court today>

  4. 3 :  to have an outward aspect :  seem <appears happy enough>

  5. 4 :  to become evident or manifest <there appears to be evidence to the contrary>

  6. 5 :  to come into public view <first appeared on a television variety show> <the book appeared in print a few years ago>

  7. 6 :  to come into existence <hominids appeared late in the evolutionary chain>



Examples of appear in a sentence

  1. She appears a nice enough person.

  2. Winning the election appears unlikely at this point.

  3. One by one, the stars appeared in the sky.

  4. The sun began to appear from behind the clouds.

  5. The airplanes seemed to appear out of nowhere.

  6. The storm disappeared as suddenly as it had appeared.

  7. The cat appears at our kitchen door every morning.

  8. One of the guests appeared a few minutes late.

  9. He appeared a little before eight last night.



Origin of appear

Middle English apperen, from Anglo-French aparer, aparoir, from Latin apparēre, from ad- + parēre to show oneself


First Known Use: 13th century



APPEAR Defined for Kids

appear

play
verb ap·pear \ə-ˈpir\

Definition of appear for Students

appearedappearing

  1. 1 :  to come into sight <Stars appeared in the sky.>

  2. 2 :  to present oneself <appear in court>

  3. 3 :  seem 1 <The runner in the lead appears to be tired.>

  4. 4 :  to come before the public <The book appeared last year.>

  5. 5 :  to come into existence <The first dinosaurs appeared around 215 million years ago.>




Law Dictionary

appear

intransitive verb ap·pear

Legal Definition of appear

  1. 1 :  to present oneself before a person or body having authority: as a :  to present oneself in court as a party to a lawsuit often through the representation of an attorney; also :  to participate as a party to a lawsuit in a way other than by physical presence (as by mail) b :  to present oneself in court as the attorney for a party to a lawsuit <appearing for the defendant>

  2. 2 :  to have an outward look <conduct that appears unethical>





Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up appear? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

expressing little or no emotion

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ