Definition of believe
1 a : to have a firm religious faith b : to accept something as true, genuine, or real <ideals we believe in> <believes in ghosts>
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>
1 a : 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>
: to be astounded at <I couldn't believe my luck>
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.
Origin and Etymology of 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
First Known Use: before 12th century
BELIEVE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of believe for English Language Learners
: to accept or regard (something) as true
: to accept the truth of what is said by (someone)
: to have (a specified opinion)
BELIEVE Defined for Kids
Definition of believe for Students
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.>
Legal Definition of believe
: to consider to be true or honest
Seen and Heard
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