con·​cern | \kən-ˈsərn \
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

Keep scrolling for more

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


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.


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.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

That may be why fertility is also a common issue, as the Office on Women's Health says one of the top risk factors concerning an inability to conceive is age. Amy Capetta, Woman's Day, "When Are You Most Fertile?," 18 Sep. 2018 As Wilkinson explained in The Washington Post’s very own pages, the restaurant had maintained a politically neutral stance for a decade and she was concerned about the repercussions in the pro-Trump town. Mari Uyehara, GQ, "Blacklist Every Last One of Them," 26 June 2018 Post’s way of looking at this story relies heavily on the rule concerning everyone’s comfort. Hilary Weaver, Vanities, "“She’s Stuck in a Really Tough Position”: Etiquette Experts on the Red Hen Controversy," 26 June 2018 Detectives began investigating the couple in May after receiving reports from a third party who was concerned about the condition of the family's South Boise home. Nicole Blanchard, idahostatesman, "Boise couple faces felony charges after 6 kids found in 'filthy and dangerous' home," 25 June 2018 Messenger Kids appears to be grooming the next generation of Facebook users, and that may be concerning for some parents. Dani Deahl, The Verge, "Facebook’s controversial Messenger Kids is rolling out to Canada and Peru," 22 June 2018 The report concludes that while the drop in multifamily is concerning, the pipeline for new homes remains strong. Jeff Andrews, Curbed, "U.S. housing market continues rebound, despite increased inequality, says Harvard report," 19 June 2018 Your lack of experience is particularly concerning, given the existing lack of drug policy expertise among those tasked by President Trump to combat the epidemic. Lev Facher, STAT, "Empty desks, squabbles, inexperienced staff: Exactly who is coordinating White House drug policy?," 18 June 2018 Financial economists were concerned with accurately measuring the cost of transactions that would happen in the future. Mary Williams Walsh,, "Jeremy Gold, 75, actuary who warned of pension crisis," 14 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Of particular concern is small particles that are less than 2.5 microns in diameter known as PM 2.5. Umair Irfan, Vox, "New Delhi is once again the most polluted city on Earth," 8 Nov. 2018 As sustainability becomes a more crucial topic of concern in the fashion industry, Everlane is leading the way with its environmentally-conscious endeavors. Lauren Alexis Fisher, Harper's BAZAAR, "Everlane Debuts New Collection Made From Recycled Plastic Bottles," 25 Oct. 2018 The release date probably isn’t the biggest concern though. Hayden Dingman, PCWorld, "Microsoft's Xbox Game Pass subscription is coming to PCs, but in what form?," 25 Oct. 2018 McCabe’s lawyers claimed the Justice Department has denied access to the sought-after information out of concern that the documents could be later used against them, the lawsuit said. Elizabeth Zwirz, Fox News, "Fired FBI official Andrew McCabe's lawyers file suit against FBI, DOJ and its watchdog," 2 Oct. 2018 These types of side effects weren’t more common in CR dieters overall, but several people had to pull out of the study because of safety concerns. Mark Barna, Discover Magazine, "Not So Fast," 24 Sep. 2018 His answer is one of concern for those watching to see how Kavanaugh handles questions about women's reproductive freedom. Abby Gardner, Glamour, "Watch Kamala Harris Expertly Question Supreme Court Nominee Brett Kavanaugh on Reproductive Rights," 6 Sep. 2018 Moreover, the team also found that this abrupt thawing was still a concern even under a scenario in which humans tried to rein in their greenhouse-gas production and slow climate change. Meghan Bartels,, "Melting Permafrost Below Arctic Lakes Is Even More Dangerous to the Climate, NASA Warns," 18 Aug. 2018 Other protesters raised concerns about Kavanaugh’s belief that semi-automatic rifles are constitutionally protected. Alison Kuznitz,, "Abortion, Women's Rights Activists Rally In New Haven Against Supreme Court Nominee," 10 July 2018

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.

See More

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


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


see concern entry 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about concern

Statistics for concern

Last Updated

12 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for concern

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

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 \
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

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on concern

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


full of whispering sounds

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Vocab Quiz

  • the-education-of-achilles-eugne-delacroix
  • Which is a synonym of discomfit?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?


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


Love words? Need even more definitions?

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