watch

verb
\ ˈwäch How to pronounce watch (audio) , ˈwȯch \
watched; watching; watches

Definition of watch

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to keep vigil as a devotional exercise
b : to be awake during the night
2a : to be attentive or vigilant
b : to keep guard
3a : to keep someone or something under close observation
b : to observe as a spectator the country watched as stocks fell sharply
4 : to be expectant : wait watch for the signal

transitive verb

1 : to keep under guard
2a : to observe closely in order to check on action or change being watched by the police
b : to look at : observe sat and watched the crowd
c : to look on at watch television watch a ball game
3a : to take care of : tend
b : to be careful of watches his diet
4 : to be on the alert for : bide watched her opportunity
watch it
: look out : be careful watch it when you handle the glassware
watch one's step
: to proceed with extreme care : act or talk warily
watch over
: to have charge of : superintend

watch

noun

Definition of watch (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : the act of keeping awake to guard, protect, or attend
b obsolete : the state of being wakeful
c : a wake over a dead body
d : a state of alert and continuous attention
e : close observation : surveillance
f : a notice or bulletin that alerts the public to the possibility of severe weather conditions occurring in the near future a winter storm watch
2a : any of the definite divisions of the night made by ancient peoples
b : one of the indeterminate intervals marking the passage of night usually used in plural the silent watches of the night
b archaic : the office or function of a sentinel or guard
4a : a body of soldiers or sentinels making up a guard
b : a watchman or body of watchmen formerly assigned to patrol the streets of a town at night, announce the hours, and act as police
5a(1) : a portion of time during which a part of a ship's company is on duty
(2) : the part of a ship's company required to be on duty during a particular watch
(3) : a sailor's assigned duty period
b : a period of duty : shift
c : a term as holder especially of an overseeing or managerial office the business grew on her watch
6 : a portable timepiece designed to be worn (as on the wrist) or carried in the pocket — compare clock

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Examples of watch in a Sentence

Verb They have a rookie on the team who is fun to watch. I fell asleep watching television. What movie are you watching? “Mom, watch me do a cartwheel!” She sat and watched the children play. “Would you like to play, too?” “No, I'll just watch.” Just sit back and watch. Keep watching to see what happens next. “What happens next?” “Watch and see.” People are watching this presidential race very carefully. Noun He glanced at his watch. When you're driving in winter you should always be on the watch for ice on the roads.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Going to watch my little brother and his friends play ball is her favorite hobby. Kyle Neddenriep, The Indianapolis Star, "We asked you to nominate Sports Moms of the Year. Read about these amazing women.," 8 May 2021 Here are other market tests to watch for during the coming spring sales. Kelly Crow, WSJ, "Sotheby’s, Christie’s Expect to Sell $1 Billion in Art at Spring Auctions," 8 May 2021 Voting rights groups last week asked the Justice Department to send monitors to Veterans Memorial Coliseum to watch over the recount. Bob Christie, Anchorage Daily News, "Arizona Senate assures feds election recount is secure," 8 May 2021 But those who desire the answer will have to watch the broadcast next Saturday. BostonGlobe.com, "Steve Kornacki proves good at calling all types of races," 8 May 2021 Voting rights groups last week asked the Justice Department to send monitors to Veterans Memorial Coliseum to watch over the recount. Bob Christie, ajc, "Arizona Senate assures feds election recount is secure," 8 May 2021 For the first time since the pandemic struck 14 months ago, fans were allowed to watch Beaver football do something in Reser Stadium. oregonlive, "Oregon State wraps up spring practice as fans watch football in Reser Stadium for first time since 2019," 8 May 2021 The Coke Zero Sugar 400, one of the sport’s showcase events, is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Full crowds also will be allowed to watch the Xfinity Series race scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Aug. 27. Edgar Thompson, orlandosentinel.com, "Thank you, Mary Lou: NASCAR star Denny Hamlin guns for Mother’s Day win at Darlington," 8 May 2021 This is going to be the big number everyone is going to watch as Santa Anita finishes its season for a little more than a month. John Cherwa, Los Angeles Times, "Horse racing newsletter: Preakness rankings are here," 7 May 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun According to a former senior GNA official, the GNA bears responsibility for the Kaniyat crimes that happened on its watch. Washington Post, "Mass murder and the sin of silence," 8 May 2021 The Angels never won a playoff game on his watch even with Mike Trout aboard for most of his time in Anaheim. John Shea, San Francisco Chronicle, "Albert Pujols, Buster Posey and the lessons learned from mega contracts," 8 May 2021 Last week’s deadly stampede at a religious festival, in which 45 ultra-Orthodox Jews were killed, only complicated his task by creating an unwelcome diversion and calls for an official investigation into possible negligence on his watch. NBC News, "Israel's Netanyahu misses deadline to form a new government," 5 May 2021 Last week’s deadly stampede at a religious festival, in which 45 ultra-Orthodox Jews were killed, only complicated his task by creating an unwelcome diversion and calls for an official investigation into possible negligence on his watch. Josef Federman, chicagotribune.com, "Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu fails to form government by deadline, putting his political future in question," 4 May 2021 On his watch, the Employment Development Department (EDD), which administers the program, initially suspended requirements to verify both initial and ongoing eligibility for the program. Lanhee J. Chen, CNN, "The real reason some Californians want to recall Gov. Gavin Newsom," 30 Apr. 2021 This makes having a passcode on your watch a much less annoying thing. Anthony Karcz, Forbes, "How To Unlock Your iPhone With Your Apple Watch In iOS 14.5," 26 Apr. 2021 Thao stood watch, keeping the upset bystanders away from the other three officers and Floyd. Rochelle Olson, Star Tribune, "Chauvin's alleged accomplices now face their own reckonings in Floyd's murder," 21 Apr. 2021 For three years, members and volunteers have stood watch at the front of the building in shifts 24 hours a day, in case any immigration officials tried to come in. Courtney Tanner, The Salt Lake Tribune, "‘I am free today’: After three years, Vicky Chavez can safely leave her sanctuary at a Salt Lake City church," 16 Apr. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'watch.' 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 watch

Verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1a

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for watch

Verb

Middle English wacchen, from Old English wæccan — more at wake

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Time Traveler for watch

Time Traveler

The first known use of watch was before the 12th century

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Statistics for watch

Last Updated

10 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Watch.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/watch. Accessed 17 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for watch

watch

verb

English Language Learners Definition of watch

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to look at (someone or something) for an amount of time and pay attention to what is happening
: to give your attention to (a situation, an event, etc.)
: to care for (someone or something) for a period of time in order to make sure that nothing bad or unwanted happens

watch

noun

English Language Learners Definition of watch (Entry 2 of 2)

: a device that shows what time it is and that you wear on your wrist or carry in a pocket
: the act of giving your attention to someone or something especially in order to make sure that nothing bad or unwanted happens
: the act of looking for someone or something that you expect to see : the act of regularly checking to see if someone has arrived or if something has appeared or happened

watch

verb
\ ˈwäch How to pronounce watch (audio) \
watched; watching

Kids Definition of watch

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to keep in view Did you watch the game?
2 : to be on the lookout I'm watching for a signal.
3 : to take care of : tend Watch the house until I get back.
4 : to be careful of Watch your step.
5 : to keep guard Watch outside the door.
6 : to stay awake She watched at the sick child's bedside.
watch out
: to be aware of and ready for Remember to watch out for broken glass.

Other Words from watch

watcher noun

watch

noun

Kids Definition of watch (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a small timepiece worn on the wrist or carried
2 : close observation
4 : the time during which someone is on duty to guard or be on the lookout
5 : an act of keeping awake to guard or protect

Comments on watch

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