listen with only half an ear

idiom
Updated on: 15 Nov 2017

Definition of listen with only half an ear

: to not listen closely
  • When I told my story, my brother listened with only half an ear.

Word by Word Definitions

listen play
  1. : to give ear to : hear

  2. : to pay attention to sound

  3. : to hear something with thoughtful attention : give consideration

  1. : an act of listening

only play
  1. : unquestionably the best : peerless

  2. : alone in a class or category : sole

  3. : having no brother or sister

  1. : as a single fact or instance and nothing more or different : merely

  2. : solely, exclusively

  3. : at the very least

  1. : with the restriction that : but

  2. : and yet : however

  3. : were it not that : except

half play
  1. : either of two equal parts that compose something

  2. : half an hour

  3. : one of a pair: such as

  1. : being one of two equal parts

  2. : that is approximately equal to either of two equal parts that compose something : amounting to approximately half

  3. : falling short of the full or complete thing : partial

  1. : in an equal part or degree

  2. : not completely : partially

  3. : by any means : at all

ear play
  1. : the characteristic vertebrate organ of hearing and equilibrium consisting in the typical mammal of a sound-collecting outer ear separated by the tympanic membrane from a sound-transmitting middle ear that in turn is separated from a sensory inner ear by membranous fenestrae

  2. : any of various organs (as of a fish) capable of detecting vibratory motion

  3. : the external ear of humans and most mammals

  1. : the fruiting spike of a cereal (such as wheat or corn) including both the seeds and protective structures

  1. : to form ears in growing


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