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verb, re·cov·er \ri-ˈkə-vər\

Simple Definition of recover

  • : to become healthy after an illness or injury : to return to normal health

  • : to return to a normal state after a period of difficulty

  • : to get (something, such as an ability or feeling) again

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of recover

recoveredrecovering play \-ˈkə-və-riŋ, -ˈkəv-riŋ\

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to get back :  regain

  3. 2 a :  to bring back to normal position or condition <stumbled, then recovered himself> b archaic :  rescue

  4. 3 a :  to make up for <recover increased costs through higher prices> b :  to gain by legal process

  5. 4 archaic :  reach

  6. 5 :  to find or identify again <recover a comet>

  7. 6 a :  to obtain from an ore, a waste product, or a by-product b :  to save from loss and restore to usefulness :  reclaim

  8. intransitive verb
  9. 1 :  to regain a normal position or condition (as of health) <recovering from a cold>

  10. 2 :  to obtain a final legal judgment in one's favor

recoverability play \-ˌkə-və-rə-ˈbi-lə-tē, -ˌkəv-rə-\ noun
recoverable play \-ˈkə-və-rə-bəl, -ˈkəv-rə-\ adjective
recoverer play \-ˈkə-vər-ər\ noun

Examples of recover in a sentence

  1. She had a heart attack but is recovering well.

  2. Share prices will be down until the economy recovers.

  3. She recovered consciousness in the hospital.

  4. I slipped, but somehow recovered my balance.

  5. He suffered a stroke and hasn't yet recovered the use of his left arm.

  6. The police recovered his stolen wallet.

  7. The program helps users recover computer files that have been deleted.

Origin of recover

Middle English, from Anglo-French recoverer, from Latin recuperare, from re- + *caperare, from Latin capere to take — more at heave

First Known Use: 14th century

RECOVER Defined for Kids


verb re·cov·er \ri-ˈkə-vər\

Definition of recover for Students


  1. 1 :  to get back :  regain <I recovered my lost wallet.> <Mary began to recover her breath and feel safer … — Frances Hodgson Burnett, The Secret Garden>

  2. 2 :  to regain or return to a normal or usual state (as of health or composure <Have you recovered from the flu?>

  3. 3 :  to make up for <We can't recover lost time.>

Medical Dictionary


intransitive verb re·cov·er \ri-ˈkəv-ər\

Medical Definition of recover

recovered; recovering \-(ə-)riŋ\play

  1. :  to regain a normal position or condition (as of health) <recovering from the effects of a cold>

Law Dictionary


transitive verb re·cov·er \ri-ˈkə-vər\

Legal Definition of recover

  1. 1 :  to get back or get back an equivalent for <recover costs through higher prices>

  2. 2a :  to obtain or get back (as damages, satisfaction for a debt, or property) through a judgment or decree <recover damages in a tort action> b :  to obtain (a judgment) in one's favor

  3. intransitive verb
  4. 1 :  to get something back

  5. 2 :  to obtain damages or something else through a judgment <argued that the plaintiff should not be permitted to recover>

Seen and Heard

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