Definition of


  1. (verb, cognition) get to know or become aware of, usually accidentally
    I see that you have been promoted
  2. (verb, cognition) identify as in botany or biology, for example
  3. (verb, cognition) make a discovery
    The story is false, so far as I can discover
  4. (verb, communication) make known to the public information that was previously known only to a few people or that was meant to be kept a secret
    The actress won't reveal how old she is
    bring out the truth
    he broke the news to her
    unwrap the evidence in the murder case
  5. (verb, creation) make a discovery, make a new finding
    Physicists believe they found a new elementary particle
  6. (verb, perception) see for the first time; make a discovery
  7. (verb, perception) discover or determine the existence, presence, or fact of
    We found traces of lead in the paint
  8. (verb, possession) find unexpectedly
    she struck a goldmine
    The hikers finally struck the main path to the lake

via WordNet, Princeton University

Origin of the word Discover

  1. c.1300, from O.Fr. descovrir, from L.L. discooperire, from L. dis- "opposite of" + cooperire "to cover up" (see cover). Originally with a sense of betrayal or malicious exposure (discoverer originally meant "informant"), the modern meaning "to obtain knowledge or sight of what was not known" is from 1550s. Related: Discovered. more

via Online Etymology Dictionary, ©2001 Douglas Harper

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