believe

verb
be·​lieve | \ bə-ˈlēv How to pronounce believe (audio) \
believed; believing

Definition of believe

transitive verb

1a : to consider to be true or honest believe the reports you wouldn't believe how long it took
b : to accept the word or evidence of I believe you couldn't believe my ears
2 : to hold as an opinion : suppose I believe it will rain soon

intransitive verb

1a : to accept something as true, genuine, or real ideals we believe in believes in ghosts
b : to have a firm or wholehearted religious conviction or persuasion : to regard the existence of God as a fact Do you believe? usually used with in believe in the Scriptures
2 : to have a firm conviction as to the goodness, efficacy, or ability of something believe in exercise
3 : to hold an opinion : think I believe so
not believe
: to be astounded at I couldn't believe my luck

Other Words from believe

believer noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for believe

Synonyms

Antonyms

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Examples of believe in a Sentence

I have watched the many ways that teachers demonstrate pleasure in what students have said or done. I used to believe that teachers needed to present a stoic face for fear of losing control—as if smiling caused bad behavior. — Nancy Mack, English Journal, September 2008 Scientists kept a close eye on Mount Saint Helens. The volcano in Washington State spewed steam and ash throughout the month, leading experts to believe that it could erupt at any time. Time For Kids, 17 Dec. 2004 They parted as casually as any friends who believe they will meet in a few days. But each knew the other was in deadly peril of his life. — Esther Forbes, Johnny Tremain, 1943 The scientists believed the reports. Many people seem to believe that theory, but I find it hard to believe. You shouldn't believe everything you read. He says he'll help us, but I don't believe what he says. They were tricked into believing that he was a doctor. He says he'll help us, but I don't believe him. She went to church because her family expected it, but she didn't really believe. See More
Recent Examples on the Web The Colts don't believe Ryan has lost anything physically, which is why they were motivated to trade for him. Nate Atkins, The Indianapolis Star, 9 May 2022 Many people still believe the Marcos family cared for the common people. David A. Andelman, CNN, 6 May 2022 While many people believe that posting frequently is key to having a robust presence on social media, social media marketers know that not all content is created equal. Victoria Zelefsky, Forbes, 6 May 2022 Even Stephanie still can’t quite believe what California did for her, and her family. Los Angeles Times, 6 May 2022 Some couldn’t believe passing pedestrians didn’t realize her presence. Selena Barrientos, Good Housekeeping, 6 May 2022 Yet the scientist doesn’t believe that Twitter should censor erroneous views, because the scientific process necessarily involves argument. Stephen Humphries, The Christian Science Monitor, 4 May 2022 Workers at the Salt Lake City location do not believe their vote will be particularly close. Daedan Olander, The Salt Lake Tribune, 4 May 2022 Some people believe that all children have a right to know their biological parents, and should, at any age, have access to them. New York Times, 3 May 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'believe.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of believe

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

History and Etymology for believe

Middle English beleven, from Old English belēfan, from be- + lȳfan, lēfan to allow, believe; akin to Old High German gilouben to believe, Old English lēof dear — more at love

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Time Traveler for believe

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near believe

believable

believe

believe in

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Statistics for believe

Last Updated

12 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Believe.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/believe. Accessed 24 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for believe

believe

verb
be·​lieve | \ bə-ˈlēv How to pronounce believe (audio) \
believed; believing

Kids Definition of believe

1 : to have faith or confidence in the existence or worth of I don't believe in ghosts. He believes in daily exercise.
2 : to accept as true Don't believe everything you read.
3 : to accept the word of They didn't believe me.
4 : to hold an opinion : think I believe I'll have more time later.

believe

transitive verb
be·​lieve
believed; believing

Legal Definition of believe

: to consider to be true or honest

More from Merriam-Webster on believe

Nglish: Translation of believe for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of believe for Arabic Speakers

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