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verb \ˈsā, Southern also ˈse\

Simple Definition of say

  • : to use your voice to express (something) with words

  • : to express (an opinion)

  • : to express (a fact) with certainty

Full Definition of say

said play \ˈsed, especially when subject follows səd\ say·ing play \ˈsā-iŋ\ says play \ˈsez, sometimes ˈsāz, especially when subject follows səz\

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1a :  to express in words :  stateb :  to state as opinion or belief :  declare

  3. 2a :  utter, pronounceb :  recite, repeat <say your prayers>

  4. 3a :  indicate, show <the clock says five minutes after twelve>b :  to give expression to :  communicate <a glance that said all that was necessary>

  5. 4 :  suppose, assume <let's say you're right>

  6. intransitive verb
  7. :  to express oneself :  speak

say·er play \ˈsā-ər, ˈser\ noun
say uncle
  1. :  to admit defeat

that is to say
  1. :  in other words :  in effect

to say nothing of
  1. :  not to mention :  and notably in addition <will need more time, to say nothing of money>

Examples of say

  1. Is anybody there? he said.

  2. Good morning, said the woman behind the counter.

  3. I said three words before he interrupted me again.

  4. I just stopped by to say hello.

  5. He left without saying goodbye.

  6. I wanted to say thank you for all you've done for me.

  7. She said something about going to the store after work.

  8. He said something in French.

  9. Anything you say to the police can be used as evidence against you.

  10. Don't believe a word he says.

Origin of say

Middle English, from Old English secgan; akin to Old High German sagēn to say, Lithuanian sakyti, Greek ennepein to speak, tell

First Known Use: before 12th century




Simple Definition of say

  • : an opportunity to express your opinion

  • : the power to decide or help decide something

Full Definition of say

plural says play \ˈsāz, Southern also ˈsez\

  1. 1 archaic :  something that is said :  statement

  2. 2 :  an expression of opinion <had my say>

  3. 3 :  a right or power to influence action or decision; especially :  the authority to make final decisions

Examples of say

  1. Everybody had a say at the meeting.

  2. We won't make a decision until all members have had their say.

  3. The judge will have the final say on the divorce settlement.

  4. He had no say in the matter.


First Known Use of say





Definition of say

  1. 1 :  about, approximately <the property is worth, say, four million dollars>

  2. 2 :  for example :  as <if we compress any gas, say oxygen>

Examples of say

  1. <a person consumes, say, 2000 calories a day>

Origin of say

from imperative of 1say

First Known Use: circa 1596

Seen and Heard

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February 10, 2016

to put in good humor

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