believe

verb
be·​lieve | \ bə-ˈlēv How to pronounce believe (audio) \
believed; believing

Definition of believe

transitive verb

1a : to consider to be true or honest believe the reports you wouldn't believe how long it took
b : to accept the word or evidence of I believe you couldn't believe my ears
2 : to hold as an opinion : suppose I believe it will rain soon

intransitive verb

1a : to accept something as true, genuine, or real ideals we believe in believes in ghosts
b : to have a firm or wholehearted religious conviction or persuasion : to regard the existence of God as a fact Do you believe? usually used with in believe in the Scriptures
2 : to have a firm conviction as to the goodness, efficacy, or ability of something believe in exercise
3 : to hold an opinion : think I believe so
not believe
: to be astounded at I couldn't believe my luck

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Other Words from believe

believer noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for believe

Synonyms

accept, buy, credit, swallow, take, trust

Antonyms

disbelieve, discredit, reject

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Examples of believe in a Sentence

I have watched the many ways that teachers demonstrate pleasure in what students have said or done. I used to believe that teachers needed to present a stoic face for fear of losing control—as if smiling caused bad behavior. — Nancy Mack, English Journal, September 2008 Scientists kept a close eye on Mount Saint Helens. The volcano in Washington State spewed steam and ash throughout the month, leading experts to believe that it could erupt at any time. Time For Kids, 17 Dec. 2004 They parted as casually as any friends who believe they will meet in a few days. But each knew the other was in deadly peril of his life. — Esther Forbes, Johnny Tremain, 1943 The scientists believed the reports. Many people seem to believe that theory, but I find it hard to believe. You shouldn't believe everything you read. He says he'll help us, but I don't believe what he says. They were tricked into believing that he was a doctor. He says he'll help us, but I don't believe him. She went to church because her family expected it, but she didn't really believe.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Given the state of U.S.-China relations, there’s little reason to believe policymakers will prioritize the concerns of foreign investors over its own desire to prevent capital flight. Washington Post, "Wanna Bet $1.3 Trillion on Chinese Regulators?," 18 Sep. 2019 Rockstar may very well believe that a game as big as RDR2 is convincing enough for fans to skip existing launchers and install yet another EXE on their Windows machines to play the company's most recent open-world adventure. Sam Machkovech, Ars Technica, "Rockstar Games Launcher: We install it on Windows so you don’t have to [Updated]," 17 Sep. 2019 The world’s willingness to believe Black and brown women is what’s changed. Paula Rogo, Essence, "Win, Lose or Heal: The Women Of 'Surviving R. Kelly' On The Docuseries Impact," 15 Sep. 2019 Brierly believes that Cleugh could approach 16 minutes when the Chargers race at the upcoming meet. Daily Pilot, "Local freshmen shine in Laguna Hills Invitational," 14 Sep. 2019 Long story short, doctors believe this excess insulin due to insulin resistance might make your ovaries produce extra androgens, like testosterone. Mary Claire Lagroue, SELF, "Why Is PCOS Still So Hard for Doctors to Understand?," 12 Sep. 2019 Six years after that, Joshi believes that India’s love for history and the growing affordable luxury segment are bound to make this collection a success. Manavi Kapur, Quartz India, "Abhinandan Indians! Your watch could now carry a piece of IAF history," 11 Sep. 2019 The challenges that many Alaska Native people continue to experience, like substance abuse and violence, are today believed to be symptoms of intergenerational trauma, the legacy of events like those Napoleon discusses in his essay. Anchorage Daily News, "Around Alaska, there’s a new approach to suicide prevention: Think locally," 17 Sep. 2019 The bodies, believed to be of the four children, were found in a wooded area off the highway in Charlton County. Eric Levenson, CNN, "Florida mother and 4 children were missing for weeks. Then a bystander smelled something horrible.," 17 Sep. 2019

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

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First Known Use of believe

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

History and Etymology for believe

Middle English beleven, from Old English belēfan, from be- + lȳfan, lēfan to allow, believe; akin to Old High German gilouben to believe, Old English lēof dear — more at love

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Statistics for believe

Last Updated

9 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for believe

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

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More Definitions for believe

believe

verb

English Language Learners Definition of believe

: to accept or regard (something) as true
: to accept the truth of what is said by (someone)
: to have (a specified opinion)

believe

verb
be·​lieve | \ bə-ˈlēv How to pronounce believe (audio) \
believed; believing

Kids Definition of believe

1 : to have faith or confidence in the existence or worth of I don't believe in ghosts. He believes in daily exercise.
2 : to accept as true Don't believe everything you read.
3 : to accept the word of They didn't believe me.
4 : to hold an opinion : think I believe I'll have more time later.

believe

transitive verb
be·​lieve
believed; believing

Legal Definition of believe

: to consider to be true or honest

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More from Merriam-Webster on believe

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with believe

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for believe

Spanish Central: Translation of believe

Nglish: Translation of believe for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of believe for Arabic Speakers

Comments on believe

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