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 The Washington Post interviewed some of the patients, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the center's officials were concerned about possible reprisals and patients' privacy. Leonie Kijewski, Washington Post, "Shackled and locked up, Cambodia’s mentally ill languish in limbo," 15 Feb. 2020 Since people are concerned about coronavirus, the organizers took the extra precaution to make people feel comfortable, Ansley said. Priscilla Totiyapungprasert, azcentral, "How Asian food festival organizers in metro Phoenix are responding to coronavirus fears," 13 Feb. 2020 More than half a million Syrians are believed to have been displaced by the conflict in the last two months, and U.S. officials are concerned about a refugee crisis. Conor Finnegan, ABC News, "US forces come under fire while on patrol in Syria," 12 Feb. 2020 Even the most convinced progressive should sympathize with religious conservatives who are concerned about federal law possibly turning against them. Andrew T. Walker, National Review, "Understanding Why Religious Conservatives Would Vote for Trump," 10 Feb. 2020 Uber has struggled to win over investors who are concerned about the company's history of steep losses and its ability to eventually turn a profit. Sara Ashley O'brien, CNN, "After losing $8.5 billion last year, Uber CEO says 'era of growth at all costs is over'," 6 Feb. 2020 Re-defining management’s role Today chief financial officers, or CFOs, are concerned about business processes and want the operations to be more agile, accurate and qualitative. C.p. Gurnani, Quartz India, "What Indian millennials, companies and the government can do for the gig economy to succeed," 5 Feb. 2020 Trump and his defenders contend, instead, that the president was concerned about corruption in Ukraine and European burden-sharing for aid. Ephrat Livni, Quartz, "Impeachment trial finale: “The president’s defense was a fiction”," 5 Feb. 2020 The researchers were more surprised to find that many experts were also concerned about the risk of light pollution, which was ranked as the second-greatest threat to fireflies, over factors like water pollution and climate change. Brigit Katz, Smithsonian Magazine, "Study Shines Light on Urgent Threats to Fireflies," 4 Feb. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Importantly, all of these health concerns directly translate to a loss of clinical hours for which those physicians are available to take care of patients. Monya De, STAT, "Why medical school should start at age 28," 17 Feb. 2020 To be sure, there’s another worrisome sign: oil prices slumped into a bear market recently on growing concern that the coronavirus will disrupt the world's second-largest economy. Jessica Menton, USA TODAY, "A tale of two markets: Why are stocks and bonds diverging as coronavirus spreads?," 15 Feb. 2020 Organizers of the world’s biggest mobile technology fair cancelled the event, set to take place in Spain, because of health and safety concerns. Washington Post, "Asian stocks edge mostly lower after China virus cases spike," 14 Feb. 2020 President Trump last year signed an executive order that would make AI a national priority, responding to concerns that China was outpacing the US in AI development. Amrita Khalid, Quartz, "The White House wants more AI research for less money," 14 Feb. 2020 Perry said the City and engineers are listening to concerns and have looked at many different options over the years. Segann March,, "Blue Ash business owners, residents concerned about proposed roundabout," 14 Feb. 2020 Legacy refused to answer questions about whether their opposition was rooted in financial concerns. oregonlive, "Psychiatric hospital rejected 3 years ago still wants to add Portland-area inpatient beds. Deep in ‘crisis,’ Unity says there’s no need.," 14 Feb. 2020 But people could speak about general concerns during regular meetings. Kristi Nix, Houston Chronicle, "Fort Bend ISD officials propose new public comment policies for board meetings," 14 Feb. 2020 Taiwan, Japan, the Philippines and Guam were the other countries or territories that rejected the Westerdam on concerns over the virus, which has killed more than 1,300 people since the outbreak started in central China late last year. Natnicha Chuwiruch, Fortune, "Carnival ship rejected by 5 ports has finally made it into one. Now a new cruise controversy is brewing," 13 Feb. 2020

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

19 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Concern.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for concern


How to pronounce concern (audio)

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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More from Merriam-Webster on concern

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for concern

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with concern

Spanish Central: Translation of concern

Nglish: Translation of concern for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of concern for Arabic Speakers

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