get

1 of 3

verb

ˈget How to pronounce get (audio)
nonstandard
ˈgit How to pronounce get (audio)
got ˈgät How to pronounce get (audio) ; got or gotten ˈgä-tᵊn How to pronounce get (audio) ; getting

transitive verb

1
a
: to gain possession of
got a new bicycle
b
: to receive as a return : earn
he got a bad reputation for carelessness
2
a
: to obtain by concession or entreaty
get your mother's permission to go
b
: to become affected by (a disease or bodily condition) : catch
got measles from his sister
3
a
: to seek out and obtain
hoped to get dinner at the inn
b
: to obtain and bring where wanted or needed
get a pencil from the desk
4
: beget
5
a
: to cause to come or go
quickly got his luggage through customs
b
: to cause to move
get it out of the house
c
: to cause to be in a certain position or condition
got his feet wet
d
: to make ready : prepare
get breakfast
6
a
: to be subjected to
got a bad fall
b
: to receive by way of punishment
c
: to suffer a specified injury to
got my nose broken
7
a
: to achieve as a result of military activity
b
: to obtain or receive by way of benefit or advantage
he got little for his trouble
get the better of an enemy
8
a
: seize
The dog got the thief by the leg.
b
: overcome
Such practices will surely get you in the end.
c
: to have an emotional effect on
the final scene always gets me
d
: irritate
the delays were starting to get her
e
: puzzle
This problem really gets me.
f
: to take vengeance on
specifically : kill
g
: hit
9
: to prevail on : cause
finally got them to tidy up their room
10
a
: have
used in the present perfect tense form with present meaning
I've got no money
b
: to have as an obligation or necessity
used in the present perfect tense form with present meaning
you have got to come
11
a
: to find out by calculation
get the answer to a problem
b
: memorize
got the verse by heart
c
: hear
Sorry, but I didn't get your name.
d
: understand
he got the joke
12
: to establish communication with
13
: to put out in baseball
14
: deliver sense 6b
the car gets 20 miles to the gallon

intransitive verb

1
a
: to succeed in coming or going : to bring or move oneself
get away to the country
got into the car
b
: to reach or enter into a certain condition
got to sleep after midnight
c
: to make progress
hasn't gotten far with the essay
2
: to acquire wealth
3
a
: to be able
never got to go to college
b
: to come to be
often used with following present participle
got talking about old times
4
a
: to succeed in becoming : become
how to get clear of all the debts I oweWilliam Shakespeare
b
: to become involved
people who get into trouble with the law
5
: to leave immediately
told them to get

auxiliary verb

used with the past participle of transitive verbs as a passive voice auxiliary
they got caught in the act
How do you pronounce get?: Usage Guide

The pronunciation \ˈgit\ has been noted as a feature of some British and American dialects since the 16th century. In the phonetic spelling of his own speech Benjamin Franklin records git. However, since at least 1687 some grammarians and teachers have disapproved this pronunciation. It nonetheless remains in widespread and unpredictable use in many dialects, often, but not exclusively, when get is a passive auxiliary (as in get married) or an imperative (as in get up!).

get

2 of 3

noun (1)

1
a
: something begotten:
(1)
(2)
: the entire progeny of a male animal
b
2
: a return of a difficult shot in a game (such as tennis)

get

3 of 3

noun (2)

plural gittin gē-ˈtēn How to pronounce get (audio) ˈgi-tin How to pronounce get (audio)
1
: a document of release from obligation in Jewish law
specifically : a bill of divorce
2
: a religious divorce by Jewish law
Phrases
get after
: to pursue with exhortation, reprimand, or attack
The coach really got after the players at halftime.
get ahead
: to achieve success
determined to get ahead in life
get a life
: to stop wasting time on trivial or hopeless matters
get a move on
: hurry
get at
1
: to reach effectively
The valve is hard to get at unless you have a special tool.
2
: to influence corruptly : bribe
3
: to turn one's attention to
The committee finally got at the main issue.
4
: to try to prove or make clear
I don't understand what he's getting at.
get away with
: to avoid criticism or punishment for or the consequences of (such as a reprehensible act)
get cracking
: to make a start : get going
ought to get cracking on that assignment
get even
: to get revenge
get even with
: to repay in kind
get going
: to make a start
time to get going on that assignment
get into
: to become strongly involved with or deeply interested in
got into gymnastics at an early age
get it
: to receive a scolding or punishment
get it on
1
: to become enthusiastic, energetic, or excited
2
: to engage in sexual intercourse
get on
1
: to produce an unfortunate effect on : upset
the noise got on my nerves
2
: to criticize insistently
the fans got on him for losing the game
get one's act together
1
: to put one's life, thoughts, or emotions in order : cease to be confused or misdirected
2
: to begin to function in a skillful or efficient manner
the company finally got its act together
get one's goat
: to make one angry or annoyed
get over
1
a
: overcome, surmount
get over your fear of being lied to
b
: to recover from
still trying to get over a bad cold
c
: to reconcile oneself to : become accustomed to
was very disappointed, but he'll get over it
2
: to move or travel across
get real
: to stop deceiving oneself or fooling around : face reality
get religion
1
: to undergo religious conversion
2
: to turn to or adopt an enlightened course of action or point of view
get somewhere
: to be successful
After a difficult start we're finally getting somewhere.
get there
: to be successful
get through
: to reach the end of : complete
got through the ordeal unhurt
get to
1
a
: begin
gets to worrying over nothing at all
b
: to be ready to begin or deal with
I'll get to the accounts as soon as I can
2
: to have an effect on: such as
a
b
: bother
All these delays are starting to get to me.
get together
1
: to bring together : accumulate
2
: to come together : assemble, meet
often gets together with his friends after work
3
: to reach agreement
were unable to get together on the new contract
get wind of
: to become aware of
got wind of our plans for the party
get with it
: to become alert or aware : show sophisticated consciousness

Examples of get in a Sentence

Verb He got a new bicycle for his birthday. I never did get an answer to my question. I got a letter from my lawyer. She got a phone call from her sister. Did you get my message? You need to get your mother's permission to go. She hasn't been able to get a job. If you want to be successful you need to get a good education. It took us a while to get the waiter's attention. It took us a while to get a taxi.
Recent Examples on the Web
Verb
And, as Riley eventually learns, to want to get better. Nicole Fallert, USA TODAY, 10 Apr. 2024 After rehearsal, on Tuesday nights, the two of them would get tacos and beers at a nearby bar. Ryan Bradley MacLeod Andrews Emma Kehlbeck Quinton Kamara, New York Times, 10 Apr. 2024 Arnold Schwarzenegger and his pet pig are getting their steps in! Angel Saunders, Peoplemag, 10 Apr. 2024 Civil rights icon and labor leader Dolores Huerta is getting the biopic treatment in a new film. Katcy Stephan, Variety, 10 Apr. 2024 As such, it’s got a 6.3-liter V-12, a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic that routes power to the rear axle, and a limited-slip differential. Bryan Hood, Robb Report, 10 Apr. 2024 Generally, most shippers also get a separate insurance product to cover business interruption, which could be add to the losses, given the busy Port of Baltimore. Federica Cocco, Washington Post, 10 Apr. 2024 Since salary is dependent on multiple factors, do some research to get a sense of what your target job should offer. Caroline Ceniza-Levine, Forbes, 29 Mar. 2024 If an overdue item doesn’t get returned within 60 days, a library user gets an invoice for replacement costs. David Garrick, San Diego Union-Tribune, 29 Mar. 2024
Noun
The following Saturday sees Barca take on Cadiz away, and Pedri could pick up further minutes ahead of perhaps being given a run out from the get go when the Catalans host PSG at the Montjuic Stadium. Tom Sanderson, Forbes, 28 Mar. 2024 Understanding the complexity of the situation was necessary from the get go, Bauer adds. Ed Meza, Variety, 19 Mar. 2024 He’s also seen riders on their own get stuck, unable to get out, or riders that break off from their party and get lost on their own. Brett French, Idaho Statesman, 31 Jan. 2024 Others who were at this get together must have felt the same awe, watching a master do something few, if any artists could manage. Hugh McIntyre, Forbes, 29 Feb. 2024 But because units lack troops, deployments get extended — or personnel intended for the rear get pressed into front-line duty despite being ill-prepared for it. Anastacia Galouchka, Washington Post, 8 Feb. 2024 In August 2023, daughter Adira joined the family. 09 of 17 Reese Witherspoon & Jim Toth Reese Witherspoon and Jim Toth kept their relationship quiet from the get go, and that continued up until their intimate engagement over the Christmas holidays in 2010. Stephanie Sengwe, Peoplemag, 24 Dec. 2023 New Yorkers looking for quick winter getaways from the city are in luck: Amtrak is bringing back its popular buy-one-get-one-free sale, which offers free adult companion fares for midweek trips through February. Rachel Chang, Condé Nast Traveler, 11 Jan. 2024 This high-end doorbell is a great get at this price, featuring smart alerts for people and packages and a useful integration with Ecobee’s smart thermostats to show you who is at your door. Jennifer Pattison Tuohy, The Verge, 24 Nov. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'get.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Verb and Noun (1)

Middle English, from Old Norse geta to get, beget; akin to Old English bigietan to beget, Latin prehendere to seize, grasp, Greek chandanein to hold, contain

Noun (2)

Late Hebrew gēṭ

First Known Use

Verb

13th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

Noun (1)

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Noun (2)

1843, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of get was in the 13th century

Dictionary Entries Near get

Cite this Entry

“Get.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/get. Accessed 13 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition

get

verb
(ˈ)get,
 especially when unemphatic also  git
got
(ˈ)gät
; got or gotten
ˈgät-ᵊn
; getting
1
: to gain possession of (as by receiving, acquiring, earning, buying, or winning)
get a present
got first prize
get a dog
2
a
: to obtain by request or as a favor
get your mother's permission
b
: to come to have
get a good night's sleep
c
: to come down with (an illness) : catch
get the measles
3
a
: to succeed in coming or going
got out
got home early
b
: to cause to come or go
got the car to the gas station
4
: to become the father of : beget
5
a
: to cause to be in a certain condition
got his hair cut
got her feet wet
b
: become sense 1
get sick
get better
it's getting warmer
c
: prepare sense 2
started getting dinner
6
a
: baffle entry 1 sense 1, puzzle
the third question got everybody
b
: irritate sense 1
don't let it get you
c
: hit entry 1 sense 1c
got him in the leg
d
: kill entry 1 sense 1
swore to get them
7
a
: to be subjected to or experience
get a broken nose
b
: to receive as punishment
got six months for stealing
8
a
: to find out by calculation
got the right answer
b
: to hear correctly
I didn't get your name
c
: understand sense 1a
now I've got it
I get you
9
: persuade, induce
couldn't get her to agree
10
a
: have entry 1 sense 1
used in the present perfect form with present meaning
I've got no time
b
: to have to : must
used in the present perfect form with present meaning
has got to come
c
: to be able
got to go swimming
11
: deliver sense 6
the car gets 20 miles to the gallon
12
: to leave immediately
told them to get

Medical Definition

get

transitive verb
got (ˈ)gät How to pronounce get (audio) ; got or gotten ˈgät-ᵊn How to pronounce get (audio) ; getting
: to catch or become affected by (a disease or bodily condition)
got measles from his brother
got her period

More from Merriam-Webster on get

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