care

noun
\ ˈker How to pronounce care (audio) \
plural cares

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 also : something that causes such a state : a particular worry, concern, etc. Relax and leave all your cares behind.
b : a cause for such anxiety
3a : painstaking or watchful attention his gentlemen conduct me with all care to some securest lodging— John Keats — see also take care
b : maintenance floor-care products — see also take care of
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, take care of
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 meaning I could care less what happensI couldn't care less what happens

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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.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Breyer, a pulmonary care doctor at UCHealth Poudre Valley Hospital in Ft. Fortune, "The 2021 Fortune/IBM Watson Health 100 Top Hospitals," 27 Apr. 2021 Health officials are scrambling to expand critical care units and stock up on dwindling supplies of oxygen. Arkansas Online, "Virus 'swallowing' people in India; crematoriums overwhelmed," 25 Apr. 2021 Health officials are scrambling to expand critical care units and stock up on dwindling supplies of oxygen. Time, "As COVID-19 Surge Continues in India, Hospitals and Crematoriums Are Overwhelmed," 25 Apr. 2021 But critical-care physicians say those numbers don’t fully capture the number of severely ill covid-19 patients. Washington Post, "Ontario hospitals under strain, and a premier under siege," 25 Apr. 2021 Health officials are scrambling to expand critical care units and stock up on dwindling supplies of oxygen. Sheikh Saaliq And Aijaz Hussain, chicagotribune.com, "As India is overwhelmed by record numbers of COVID-19 cases, family members plead for oxygen for loved ones outside hospitals," 25 Apr. 2021 Health officials are scrambling to expand critical care units and stock up on dwindling supplies of oxygen. BostonGlobe.com, "India’s crematoriums overwhelmed as virus ‘swallows people’," 25 Apr. 2021 Firefighters rushed to put out the flames and clear out patients at the Ibn al-Khatib hospital, which provides care for severe coronavirus patients in its intensive care unit. Samya Kullab, Star Tribune, "Fire tears through Baghdad hospital for coronavirus patients," 24 Apr. 2021 At one hospital in New Delhi, the capital, doctors said 20 patients in a critical care unit had died after oxygen pressure dropped. New York Times, "As Covid-19 Devastates India, Deaths Go Undercounted," 24 Apr. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Panthers owner David Tepper does not care, not if his seeming No. 1 objective of a franchise QB is available. Mark Inabinett | Minabinett@al.com, al, "AL.com NFL Mock Draft 3: Tide goes for record round," 28 Apr. 2021 Why does the National Council of Nonprofits care so much about tax policy? Tax Notes Staff, Forbes, "The Tax Issues Facing Tax-Exempt Organizations," 27 Apr. 2021 But her decision to run as a Republican — despite the party's continued attacks on transgender people — proves what the LGBTQ+ community has known all along: Caitlyn Jenner doesn’t care about trans people. refinery29.com, "Why Caitlyn Jenner’s Run For Governor Could Hurt The Trans Community," 24 Apr. 2021 Some members care too much about keeping jobs in their district through NASA contracts and not enough about truly advancing innovation in space. Will Rinehart, National Review, "Bill Nelson’s Flawed Vision for NASA," 22 Apr. 2021 People care, and with that passion comes some occasional tough sledding. BostonGlobe.com, "A huge victory for soccer fans, a huge setback for John Henry," 21 Apr. 2021 Again, the Fuel don’t really care what other teams are doing, even if there’s a clear meta. Sean Collins, Dallas News, "‘Sp9rk1e,’ Dallas Fuel could become ‘headache’ for opponents after decisive 3-1 win over Gladiators," 17 Apr. 2021 In those days, some in law enforcement couldn’t care less about crimes committed by blacks against other blacks, but there were severe penalties for offenses against whites. Robert L. Woodson Sr., WSJ, "Media’s Racial Narrative Targets Whites, Harms Blacks," 16 Apr. 2021 No doubt, Coinbase devotees could care less what these investment pros think. Bernhard Warner, Fortune, "It’s crypto bulls versus Wall Street as Coinbase shares get set to trade," 14 Apr. 2021

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.

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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

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Time Traveler for care

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for care

Last Updated

30 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Care.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/care. Accessed 11 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for care

care

noun

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

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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

Comments on care

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