con·​cern | \ kən-ˈsərn How to pronounce concern (audio) \
concerned; concerning; concerns

Definition of concern

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to relate to : be about The novel concerns three soldiers. The report concerns global warming.
b : to bear on
2 : to have an influence on : involve also : to be the business or affair of The problem concerns us all. This conversation does not concern you.
3 : to be a care, trouble, or distress to Her ill health concerns me. Her son's frequent tantrums concerned her.
4 : engage entry 1, occupy He concerns himself with trivia. She refused to concern herself with such gossip.

intransitive verb

obsolete : to be of importance : matter



Definition of concern (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : marked interest or regard usually arising through a personal tie or relationship Their friend's health is a constant cause of concern.
b : an uneasy state of blended interest, uncertainty, and apprehension The actor's sudden collapse on stage caused concern.
2 : something that relates or belongs to one : affair It's no concern of yours.
3a : matter for consideration Immigration had become a concern to Congress.
b : a matter that causes feelings of unease, uncertainty, or apprehension health/safety concerns "Just throw it into the sun!" That phrase has long been the seemingly easy answer to … very serious concerns about what to do with nuclear waste.— Dave Trumbore
4 : an organization or establishment for business or manufacture a banking concern a commercial concern

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Choose the Right Synonym for concern


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 concern in a Sentence

Verb The novel concerns three soldiers. This study concerns the noise levels in cities. This conversation doesn't concern you. Our mother's illness concerns us. Noun They have expressed concern about the cost of the project. There is some concern that the economy might worsen. I share your concern about these problems. Their friend's health is a constant source of concern. The governor needs to address voters' concerns about the economy. They have raised concerns about the cost of the project. Their friend's health is a constant concern. His concern with the well-being of his family is obvious. She has always shown genuine concern for the poor. I appreciate your concern, but there's really nothing you can do to help.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb And that is what ought to concern Illinois, and everyone else still playing. Nancy Armour, USA TODAY, "Opinion: Loyola-Chicago can complain about its seeding or prove the experts wrong," 20 Mar. 2021 Imprisoning journalists is something that occurs under totalitarian regimes and should concern everyone, the fundraising page said. Kevin Krause, Dallas News, "They allegedly stormed the Capitol; now they say it was in the service of journalism," 12 Mar. 2021 Trump’s pitch is unlikely to concern many GOP voters. David M. Drucker, Washington Examiner, "'Send your donation': GOP resources jeopardized by Trump PAC pitch," 9 Mar. 2021 But the most exciting rumors concern the display upgrades. Chris Smith, BGR, "First-ever iPad and MacBook with OLED displays reportedly coming next year," 5 Mar. 2021 But Beijing’s threatened export controls, now and in the past, have less to do with strategic considerations than with other problems—some of which should concern the West too. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "Rare Truths About China’s Rare Earths," 3 Mar. 2021 Banks, questioning Batiste’s account later, asked why Batiste’s presence in the race would concern him, given Batiste’s minimal support in earlier races. Tyler Bridges,, "The story behind the exchange between Jay Banks, Belden 'Noonie Man' Batiste and why police were called," 4 Feb. 2021 Trump’s handling of racial tensions particularly concern her. Deirdre Shesgreen, USA TODAY, "How COVID-19 shaped the 2020 election: It swung some voters to Biden but bolstered Trump with his base," 9 Nov. 2020 But our most vexing historical questions concern the more recent past. Stephen Eide, National Review, "America’s Supposedly Socialist History," 15 Jan. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Infection rates and hospitalization rates have increased by 10% and 3%, respectively, in the last week, providing some alarming context for Walensky’s concern. Emma Specter, Vogue, "CDC Director Rochelle Walensky Says She’s ‘Scared’ About New COVID-19 Cases in the United States," 29 Mar. 2021 Ford said that there is no cause for concern over damage from the malfunction. Colin Beresford, Car and Driver, "Ford Issues Stop Sale of its Electric Vehicle Home Charger," 29 Mar. 2021 Furthermore, the sole of each sneaker contains a single drop of human blood mixed with ink, another cause for concern that is pointed out in the lawsuit. Los Angeles Times, "Nike sues novelty company MSCHF over Lil Nas X’s ‘Satan Shoes’ collab," 29 Mar. 2021 Also, 55 counties remain on red alert for concern over coronavirus spreading, down 11 counties from last week on the state’s alert system. Marc Bona, cleveland, "Restaurant founder dies, AstraZeneca vaccine under scrutiny, more - coronavirus timeline March 20-26," 27 Mar. 2021 Kretzmann also pointed to a history of oil spills in the Bay Area as cause for concern. J.d. Morris, San Francisco Chronicle, "Opposition to Bay Area gas well reflects mounting concerns about climate change," 25 Mar. 2021 In the traditional art world, a young artist fetching unexpectedly high sums at auction is cause for concern. Kyle Chayka, The New Yorker, "How Beeple Crashed the Art World," 22 Mar. 2021 Finally, sometimes people ask if the sugar content of fruit is cause for concern. Washington Post, "Which fruits and vegetables should count toward your ‘5 a day’? New study has answers.," 18 Mar. 2021 This is a cause for grave concern as the South African variants share similar mutations to the other variants leaving those vaccinated with the AstraZeneca vaccine potentially exposed to multiple variants. William A. Haseltine, Forbes, "AstraZeneca Vaccine Fails To Protect Against The South African Variant, Says Study," 17 Mar. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'concern.' 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 concern


15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a


1643, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for concern

Verb and Noun

Middle English, from Middle French & Medieval Latin; Middle French concerner, from Medieval Latin concernere, from Late Latin, to sift together, mingle, from Latin com- + cernere to sift — more at certain

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Learn More about concern

Time Traveler for concern

Time Traveler

The first known use of concern was in the 15th century

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Statistics for concern

Last Updated

2 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Concern.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 10 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for concern



English Language Learners Definition of concern

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to relate to (something or someone) : to be about (something or someone)
: to affect or involve (someone) : to be the business or interest of (someone)
: to make (someone) worried : to cause concern for (someone)



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

: a feeling of worry usually shared by many people
: something that causes people to worry
: a feeling of being interested in and caring about a person or thing


con·​cern | \ kən-ˈsərn How to pronounce concern (audio) \
concerned; concerning

Kids Definition of concern

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to relate to : be about The story concerns a young prince.
2 : to be of interest or importance to : affect This problem concerns us all.
3 : to make worried Her illness concerned my parents.
4 : engage sense 2, occupy She concerns herself with other people's business.



Kids Definition of concern (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a feeling of worry or care about a person or thing concern for the poor a cause for concern
2 : something that causes worry or is regarded as important The students' safety is her main concern.
3 : something that relates to or involves a person : affair This is not your concern.
4 : a business organization a banking concern

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