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

perform

play
verb per·form \pə(r)-ˈfȯrm\

Simple Definition of perform

  • : to do an action or activity that usually requires training or skill

  • : to entertain an audience by singing, acting, etc.

  • —used to describe how effective or successful someone or something is

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of perform

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to adhere to the terms of :  fulfill <perform a contract>

  3. 2 :  carry out, do

  4. 3 a :  to do in a formal manner or according to prescribed ritual b :  to give a rendition of :  present

  5. intransitive verb
  6. 1 :  to carry out an action or pattern of behavior :  act, function

  7. 2 :  to give a performance :  play

performability

play \-ˌfȯr-mə-ˈbi-lə-tē\ noun

performable

play \-ˈfȯr-mə-bəl\ adjective

performer

play \-ˈfȯr-mər\ noun

Examples of perform in a sentence

  1. The doctor had to perform surgery immediately.

  2. The magician performed some amazing tricks.

  3. The gymnasts performed their routines perfectly.

  4. You are required to perform 50 hours of community service.

  5. The band will be performing on the main stage.

  6. She's a wonderful singer who loves to perform before a live audience.

  7. The band will perform songs from their new album.

  8. The class performed the play for the school.



Origin and Etymology of perform

Middle English, from Anglo-French parfurmer, alteration of perforner, parfurnir, from par-, per- thoroughly (from Latin per-) + furnir to complete — more at furnish


First Known Use: 14th century

Synonym Discussion of perform

perform, execute, discharge, accomplish, achieve, effect, fulfill mean to carry out or into effect. perform implies action that follows established patterns or procedures or fulfills agreed-upon requirements and often connotes special skill <performed gymnastics>. execute stresses the carrying out of what exists in plan or in intent <executed the hit-and-run>. discharge implies execution and completion of appointed duties or tasks <discharged his duties>. accomplish stresses the successful completion of a process rather than the means of carrying it out <accomplished everything they set out to do>. achieve adds to accomplish the implication of conquered difficulties <achieve greatness>. effect adds to achieve an emphasis on the inherent force in the agent capable of surmounting obstacles <effected sweeping reforms>. fulfill implies a complete realization of ends or possibilities <fulfilled their ambitions>.


PERFORM Defined for Kids

perform

play
verb per·form \pər-ˈfȯrm\

Definition of perform for Students

performed

performing

  1. 1 :  to carry out :  do <Anyone can perform this task.>

  2. 2 :  to do something needing special skill <The doctor had to perform surgery.>

  3. 3 :  to give a public presentation for entertainment

performer

noun



Law Dictionary

perform

transitive verb per·form

Legal Definition of perform

  1. 1 :  to adhere to and fulfill the terms of <perform an obligation>

  2. 2 :  to carry out or bring about <perform the work according to design>

  3. 3 :  to do according to prescribed ritual or law <perform a marriage ceremony>

  4. 4 :  to give a public rendition or presentation of <perform a copyrighted play>

  5. intransitive verb
  6. 1 :  to adhere to and fulfill the terms of a contract, promise, or obligation <failed to perform under the agreement>

  7. 2 :  to carry out or present something





Seen and Heard

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

WORD OF THE DAY

prophetic or oracular

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

confounded-person

Which is a synonym of indolent?

lazy philistine melancholy frenetic
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