care

noun
\ ˈker How to pronounce care (audio) \

Definition of care

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : suffering of mind : grief
2a : a disquieted state of mixed uncertainty, apprehension, and responsibility oppressed by sickness, grief, or care— William Wordsworth
b : a cause for such anxiety
3a : painstaking or watchful attention his gentlemen conduct me with all care to some securest lodging— John Keats
b : maintenance floor-care products
4 : regard coming from desire or esteem a care for the common good
5 : charge, supervision left the house in his care especially : responsibility for or attention to health, well-being, and safety under a doctor's care — see also health care
6 : a person or thing that is an object of attention, anxiety, or solicitude The flower garden was her special care.

care

verb
cared; caring

Definition of care (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to feel trouble or anxiety cared for his safety
b : to feel interest or concern care about freedom
2 : to give care care for the sick
3a : to have a liking, fondness, or taste don't care for your attitude
b : to have an inclination would you care for some pie

transitive verb

1 : to be concerned about or to the extent of don't care what they say doesn't care a damn
2 : wish if you care to go
care less
: not to care used positively and negatively with the same meaningI could care less what happensI couldn't care less what happens

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from care

Verb

carer noun

Choose the Right Synonym for care

Noun

care, concern, solicitude, anxiety, worry mean a troubled or engrossed state of mind or the thing that causes this. care implies oppression of the mind weighed down by responsibility or disquieted by apprehension. a face worn by years of care concern implies a troubled state of mind because of personal interest, relation, or affection. crimes caused concern in the neighborhood solicitude implies great concern and connotes either thoughtful or hovering attentiveness toward another. acted with typical maternal solicitude anxiety stresses anguished uncertainty or fear of misfortune or failure. plagued by anxiety and self-doubt worry suggests fretting over matters that may or may not be real cause for anxiety. financial worries

Examples of care in a Sentence

Noun She used care in selecting a doctor for her son. The children have inadequate medical care and little formal education. We need to provide poor people with better dental care. She wrote a book about car care. With proper care, the machine should last a decade or more. She is an expert on skin care. She knows a lot about the care and feeding of horses. She looks as if all the cares of the world are on her shoulders. Verb He doesn't care if he gets fired. I care what happens to her. On Valentine's Day, send her flowers to show that you care. I didn't know you cared. I wouldn't care to be in your shoes right now. I'm going for a walk. Would you care to join me? He'll show the photos to anyone who cares to see them. More factors influenced her decision than she cares to admit.
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Playgrounds, except those located in child care facilities and schools, will close. Fox News, "Los Angeles County issues safer-at-home order that starts Nov. 30," 28 Nov. 2020 The group is demanding Amazon provide more protective equipment and offer free health care and child care for employees. al, "As Alabama Amazon workers talk unionization, Seattle workers go on strike," 28 Nov. 2020 Playgrounds that are not part of a school or child-care center must close under the new order. Rong-gong Lin Ii Staff Writer, Los Angeles Times, "L.A. County’s new stay-home order is the strictest in California. Here’s how it works," 28 Nov. 2020 In Colorado, a special session scheduled for Monday will consider roughly $300 million in relief to businesses, restaurants and bars, child-care providers, landlords, tenants, public schools and others. Star Tribune, "With no action by Washington, states race to offer virus aid," 28 Nov. 2020 The primary reason in many countries is child care. James Hookway, WSJ, "Covid-19 Crisis Could Set Back a Generation of Women, U.N. Report Finds," 26 Nov. 2020 Official Black Wall Street lets shoppers select from a nationwide list of companies, including ones that offer child care, event planning and personal training. Khristopher J. Brooks, CBS News, "How to shop at Black-owned businesses over the holidays," 25 Nov. 2020 After the Op-Ed, you were asked to participate in a roundtable discussion on child care during COVID-19, hosted by Congressman Richard Neal, the chairman of the Ways and Means Committee. Hannah Goldfield, The New Yorker, "Deb Perelman Is Thankful for Tacos," 25 Nov. 2020 Raghu said government should invest in an accessible and affordable child care system. Nushrat Rahman, Detroit Free Press, "As women leave pandemic economy, returning to work, higher wages will be a struggle," 24 Nov. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Biden, whose campaign stayed away from Twitter in general, might not care about an online dust up. Liz Bowie, baltimoresun.com, "Sonja Santelises has earned praise running Baltimore schools. Will she be Joe Biden’s cabinet pick?," 23 Nov. 2020 But López Gonzalez, whose job involves handing out free surgical masks to residents, has also seen the other side of the psychological maelstrom: those who don’t care. Fox News, "Mexico tops 100,000 coronavirus deaths, 4th country to do so," 21 Nov. 2020 Lil Pump, for instance, has no political leanings whatsoever, Creekmur said, and therefore his fans probably won’t care. Washington Post, "Some famous rappers backed Trump’s campaign. Did it matter?," 20 Nov. 2020 Because at some point, caring about someone who doesn’t care about you (or who is too conceited to admit caring about you) gets a little sad. Jodi Walker, EW.com, "The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City," 19 Nov. 2020 Unfortunately, the virus doesn’t care, and the U.S. is in for a hard winter. Catherine Lynne Troisi, The Conversation, "President-elect Biden’s new COVID-19 task force gives the US a fresh chance to turn around a public health disaster," 13 Nov. 2020 Notably, critics of President Trump's approach to tackling COVID-19 have argued that his administration doesn't care about old people dying. TheWeek, "Biden raises eyebrows by naming doctor who 'hopes to die at 75' to his COVID-19 task force," 9 Nov. 2020 Until there’s an effective and widely distributed vaccine, the biggest question for the global economy is the spread of Covid-19, which doesn’t care who is president. John Detrixhe, Quartz, "Stock markets rally on Biden win and promising Covid-19 vaccine," 9 Nov. 2020 Palace sources have suggested that the royal family doesn't care for the newest season of Netflix's drama, The Crown. Kayleigh Roberts, Marie Claire, "Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Reportedly Can't Comment on 'The Crown' Because of Their Netflix Deal," 28 Nov. 2020

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

See More

First Known Use of care

Noun

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

Verb

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

History and Etymology for care

Noun

Middle English, "sorrow, distress, concern," going back to Old English cearu, caru, going back to Germanic *karō (whence also Old Saxon kara "sorrow, worry," Old High German chara, Old Norse kǫr "sickbed," Gothic kara "concern") perhaps going back to an Indo-European base *ǵeh2r-, *ǵh2r- "make a sound, cry," whence Old Irish ad-gair "(s/he) accuses, sues," Middle Irish gáir "shout, cry," Welsh gawr, Greek gêrys "voice, speech," Middle Persian zryg, zryq "sorrow, suffering," Ossetic (Iron dialect) zæl- "make a sound," zar- "sing"

Note: The original meaning of the Indo-European verb base was perhaps "bewail the deceased," which might account for the divergent meanings "sorrow, care" and "make a sound, cry"; though given that the former meaning is only attested in Iranian and Germanic (in which the putative sense "make a sound," if it ever existed, has left no trace), it may be more likely that two separate Indo-European bases, one perhaps sound-symbolic, have partially merged. Note that the Indo-European reconstruction *ǵeh2r-, *ǵh2r- is based solely on presumed canonical root structure, as the only attested vocalisms for the base are *gar- and *gār-. Latin garrīre "to chatter, jabber," with geminate r, may be an unrelated onomatopoeic formation.

Verb

Middle English caren "to grieve, be anxious, be solicitous," going back to Old English cearian, carian, going back to Germanic *karōjan- (whence Old Saxon karon "to lament," Old High German karōn, Gothic karon "to be concerned"), derivative of *karō "sorrow, worry" — more at care entry 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about care

Time Traveler for care

Time Traveler

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

See more words from the same century

Statistics for care

Last Updated

1 Dec 2020

Cite this Entry

“Care.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/care. Accessed 4 Dec. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for care

care

noun
How to pronounce care (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of care

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: effort made to do something correctly, safely, or without causing damage
: things that are done to keep someone healthy, safe, etc.
: things that are done to keep something in good condition

care

verb

English Language Learners Definition of care (Entry 2 of 2)

: to feel interest in something : to be interested in or concerned about something
: to feel affection for someone
somewhat formal : to want to do something or to be something

care

noun
\ ˈker How to pronounce care (audio) \

Kids Definition of care

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : serious attention Care is needed when crossing a busy street.
2 : protection sense 1, supervision The injured player is under a doctor's care.
3 : proper maintenance of property or equipment
4 : a feeling of concern or worry He acts as if he hasn't a care in the world.

care

verb
cared; caring

Kids Definition of care (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to feel interest or concern We care about what happens to you.
2 : to provide help, protection, or supervision to : look after His job is to care for the sick.
3 : to have a liking or desire Do you care for more tea?

care

noun
\ ˈka(ə)r, ˈke(ə)r How to pronounce care (audio) \

Medical Definition of care

: responsibility for or attention to health, well-being, and safety — see acute care, chronic care, health care, intensive care entry 1, primary care, secondary care, tertiary care

Other Words from care

care intransitive verb cared; caring

Keep scrolling for more

care

noun

Legal Definition of care

1 : watchful or protective attention, caution, concern, prudence, or regard usually towards an action or situation especially : due care a person has a duty to use care in dealing with others, and failure to do so is negligence — R. I. Mehr — see also due care, negligence, standard of care

Note: Statute, case law, and custom often impose a duty of care. The degree or standard of care owed varies depending on the circumstances. For example, a landlord has to exercise greater care in relation to a tenant than to a trespasser.

2a : personal supervision or responsibility : charge

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on care

What made you want to look up care? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Musical Words Quiz

  • gramophone
  • Which word describes a musical performance marked by the absence of instrumental accompaniment?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!