Definition of rehearse
1a : to say again : repeatb : to recite aloud in a formal manner
2 : to present an account of : relate rehearse a familiar story
3 : to recount in order : enumerate rehearsed their demands
4a : to give a rehearsal ofb : to train or make proficient by rehearsal
5 : to perform or practice as if in a rehearsal
: to engage in a rehearsal
Examples of rehearse in a sentence
The orchestra is rehearsing a piece by Schumann.
The band stayed up late rehearsing for the big show.
We were allowed to watch the director rehearse the dancers.
lawyers rehearsing their closing arguments
He rehearsed his dance moves in front of the mirror.
Origin and Etymology of rehearse
Middle English rehersen, from Anglo-French rehercer, from re- + hercer to harrow, from herce harrow — more at hearse
First Known Use: 14th century
REHEARSE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of rehearse for English Language Learners
: to prepare for a public performance of a play, a piece of music, etc., by practicing the performance
: to direct (a group of people) as they prepare for a public performance
: to say or do (something) several times in order to practice
REHEARSE Defined for Kids
Definition of rehearse for Students
: to practice in private in preparation for a public performance We rehearsed our play.
History for rehearse
A device called a harrow is used to break up and smooth soil. Sometimes the first run with the harrow does not break up all the lumps of earth, and the farmer has to take the harrow over the ground more than once. The medieval French verb rehercer (from herce, “harrow”) meant “to go over again with a harrow.” English borrowed this verb as rehersen, later rehearse. When we rehearse something we are, so to speak, going over the same ground again and again.
Seen and Heard
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