Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • transitive v. To become aware of directly through any of the senses, especially sight or hearing.
  • transitive v. To achieve understanding of; apprehend. See Synonyms at see1.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To see, to be aware of, to understand.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • transitive v. To obtain knowledge of through the senses; to receive impressions from by means of the bodily organs; to take cognizance of the existence, character, or identity of, by means of the senses; to see, hear, or feel
  • transitive v. To take intellectual cognizance of; to apprehend by the mind; to be convinced of by direct intuition; to note; to remark; to discern; to see; to understand.
  • transitive v. To be affected of influenced by.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • In general, to become aware of; gain a knowledge of (some object or fact).
  • Specifically, to come to know by direct experience; in psychology, to come to know by virtue of a real action of the object upon the mind (commonly upon the senses), though the knowledge may be inferential; know through external or internal intuition.
  • Synonyms Observe, Notice, etc. See see.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. become conscious of
  • v. to become aware of through the senses

Etymologies

Middle English perceiven, from Old French perceivre, from Latin percipere : per-, per- + capere, to seize; see kap- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English perceiven, from Old French percevoir, perceveir, from Latin percipere, past participle perceptus ("take hold of, obtain, receive, observe"), from per ("by, through") + capere ("to take"); see capable. Compare conceive, deceive, receive. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • [H.H. Price, Perception (1932: 106)] “I hold it to be quite certain that I do not directly perceive my hand; and that when I am said (as I may be correctly said) to ˜perceive™ it, that I

    Boundary

  • On the other hand he thinks the term perceive 'is being used perfectly literally, and in the same sense in which it is used when we speak of sight and hearing, taste and touch as perception.

    Warranted Christian Belief

  • All we can perceive is filtered through our inner state, anyway, so it's pointless to seek to act elsewhere.

    Alison Rose Levy: What Can Spiritual Seekers Learn from Scientists?

  • If they are so against what they perceive is "government-run health care", I say we cut off all the other truly government-run handouts as well ....

    Five states join lawsuit against health care bill

  • The cross-tabs show that the hate you perceive is closer to your own you hearts than a Palin voter or the GOP caucus. joe from Lowell Says:

    Matthew Yglesias » Explaining Congressional Conservatives’ Back-to-the-Future Tactics

  • I am troubled by what I perceive is intentional ambiguity as to the Space Chick question.

    Cheeseburger Gothic » Just got back from Avatar.

  • If under these true but disheartening circumstances you either must or can come to London, the workshop you perceive is the smallest consideration in the case, I am extreemly unhappy dayly and hourly for my own intention, and must leave yours unaided though with a set of feelings which I doubt will do me no good.

    Letter 227

  • With many subjects you examine fairly dispassionately the half truths in what you perceive is the error, but you rarely do so when the subject of your posts are “social conservatives”.

    We Don’t Read Much, Do We?

  • But it turns out that if one thinks about an entity inside the network (like us in the universe), then the only aspect of applying the rules that we can ever perceive is their “causal network”: the network that says what “updating event” influences what other one.

    Wolfram Blog : My Hobby: Hunting for Our Universe

  • I whole-heartedly concur with what I perceive is a much larger issue ....

    Taking Space Exploration To The People - NASA Watch

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