answer

noun
an·​swer | \ ˈan(t)-sər How to pronounce answer (audio) \

Definition of answer

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : something spoken or written in reply to a question His answer surprised us.
b : a correct response knows the answer
2 : a reply to a legal charge or suit : plea also : defense
3 : something done in response or reaction His only answer was to walk out.
4 : a solution of a problem More money is not the answer.
5 : one that imitates, matches, or corresponds to another The show is television's answer to the newsmagazines.

answer

verb
answered; answering\ ˈan(t)s-​riŋ How to pronounce answer (audio) , ˈan(t)-​sə-​ \

Definition of answer (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to speak or write in reply think carefully before answering
2a : to be or make oneself responsible or accountable answer for a debt
b : to make amends : atone He must answer for his crimes.
3 : to be in conformity or correspondence She answered to the description.
4 : to act in response to an action performed elsewhere or by another The home team scored first but the visitors answered quickly.
5 : to be adequate : serve an old bucket answered for a sink The school had to answer for a town hall.

transitive verb

1a : to speak or write in reply to answer a question answer me
b : to say or write by way of reply answer yes or no
2 : to reply to in rebuttal, justification, or explanation answer an accusation
3a : to correspond to answers the description
b : to be adequate or usable for : fulfill answer a need
4 : to act in response to answered the call to arms
5 : to offer a solution for especially : solve answer a riddle
6 obsolete : to atone for

Other Words from answer

Verb

answerer \ ˈan(t)-​sər-​ər How to pronounce answer (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for answer

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Verb

Antonyms: Noun

Antonyms: Verb

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Choose the Right Synonym for answer

Noun

answer, response, reply, rejoinder, retort mean something spoken, written, or done in return. answer implies the satisfying of a question, demand, call, or need. had answers to all their questions response may imply a quick or spontaneous reaction to a person or thing that serves as a stimulus. a response to the call for recruits reply often suggests a thorough response to all issues, points, or questions raised. a point-by-point reply to the accusation rejoinder can be a response to a reply or to an objection. a salesman with a quick rejoinder to every argument retort implies a reaction to an implicit or explicit charge, criticism, or attack which contains a countercharge or counterattack. she made a cutting retort to her critics

Examples of answer in a Sentence

Noun I asked him a simple question and he gave me a long and confusing answer. I didn't believe her answer. They wouldn't give me a straight answer to my question. I didn't know the right answer. That is the wrong answer. Do you know the answer to this question? He knew the answers to only 3 of the 10 questions. The answers are listed in the back of the book. Verb She answered all my questions. He answered only three of the test questions correctly. When the police asked him his name, he refused to answer. When I ask you a question I expect you to answer me! Answer me this: where have you put my money? I sent her a letter asking for her help, but she never answered. The phone rang repeatedly, but no one answered. Would somebody please answer the phone? I knocked on the door but no one answered. No one answered the door. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The problem is that their answer will seldom be valuable. Yec, Forbes, 19 May 2022 When he was asked about the timing of the World Baseball Classic, which is during spring training, his answer bounced between his future and the present. Bobby Nightengale, The Enquirer, 18 May 2022 Within his answer a few hours earlier, Saban specifically mentioned Jackson State and, without naming the player, alluded to the school’s successful recruitment of five-star cornerback Travis Hunter last year. Mike Rodak | Mrodak@al.com, al, 18 May 2022 Other times, like with a super tender fish filet or bunch of asparagus, foil packs are your answer. Audrey Bruno, SELF, 14 May 2022 Their answer is Gohar World, a playful collection of 40 handmade table accessories. New York Times, 13 May 2022 The contestant has won a significant amount of money answering trivia questions, despite getting a sizable percentage (in some cases, most) of those questions wrong, simply by being able to convince a panel of judges that their answer was right. Ej Dickson, Rolling Stone, 5 May 2022 My answer is this is a show that needs to be watched once and twice and three times. Adam B. Vary, Variety, 4 May 2022 He was initially re-signed this offseason but is now out after the Browns found their longterm answer. Dan Labbe, cleveland, 2 May 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb To be sure, the board’s bungled launch and the agency’s ensuing struggle to directly answer questions about its purpose, funding or work made the new initiative contentious from the start. Amanda Seitz, Anchorage Daily News, 20 May 2022 Colerain would answer with a run in the third, then broke the game open with a four-run fourth. Scott Springer, The Enquirer, 19 May 2022 By building streaming into your flexible event planning, either as a backup or as a key element, the event can truly answer what your audience and your business need. Tj Martin, Forbes, 18 May 2022 Kohring can answer questions about choosing the proper lighting for a room, LED technology, upgrading your lightbulbs, ceiling fans and more. Jura Koncius, Washington Post, 18 May 2022 And to answer your other question, yes — it’s okay to end relationships with anyone. refinery29.com, 12 May 2022 With decades of gardening expertise, Marchese can answer any question about every plant in stock. Drew Dawson, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 10 May 2022 In a few months, the court’s ruling will answer the question of how far a public school instructor whose faith compels him to share his faith may do so in the presence of students without breaching the wall between church and state. Dan Eaton, San Diego Union-Tribune, 9 May 2022 If your tastes tend to lean more toward the exotic or trendy, Gunselman’s can answer that craving as well, with the Beast Burger. cleveland, 9 May 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'answer.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of answer

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for answer

Noun and Verb

Middle English, from Old English andswaru (akin to Old Norse andsvar answer); akin to Old English and- against, swerian to swear — more at ante-

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Time Traveler for answer

Time Traveler

The first known use of answer was before the 12th century

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Dictionary Entries Near answer

ansu

answer

answerable

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Statistics for answer

Last Updated

24 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Answer.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/answer. Accessed 25 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for answer

answer

noun
an·​swer | \ ˈan-sər How to pronounce answer (audio) \

Kids Definition of answer

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : something said or written in reply (as to a question)
2 : a solution of a problem Money is not the answer to improving this situation.

answer

verb
answered; answering

Kids Definition of answer (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to speak or write in order to satisfy a question
2 : to write a response to a letter or email
3 : to pick up (a ringing telephone)
4 : to open (a door) when someone knocks on it
5 : to react to something with an action answer a job posting
6 : to take responsibility The camp director answered for the children's safety.
answer back
: to reply rudely

answer

noun
an·​swer

Legal Definition of answer

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the defendant's written response to the plaintiff's complaint in a civil suit in which he or she may deny any of the plaintiff's allegations, offer any defenses, and make any counterclaims against the plaintiff, cross-claims against other defendants, or third-party claims against third parties otherwise not involved in the lawsuit
2 : a written response to a counterclaim, cross-claim, or third-party claim : reply — see also responsive pleading at pleading sense 1

Note: In federal cases, answers are governed by Rule 12 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Under Rule 12, certain defenses (as lack of jurisdiction) may be made by motion rather than included in the answer.

answer

intransitive verb

Legal Definition of answer (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to serve or file an answer
2 : to make oneself responsible or accountable (as for the debt of another)

transitive verb

1 : to reply to in an answer answer the complaint
2 : to make a defense against (as a charge or accusation)

Other Words from answer

answerable adjective

More from Merriam-Webster on answer

Nglish: Translation of answer for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of answer for Arabic Speakers

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