understand - definition in the American English Dictionary - Cambridge Dictionaries Online

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English definition of “understand”

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understand

verb  us   /ˌʌn·dərˈstænd/ (past tense and past participle understood  /ˌʌn·dərˈstʊd/ )

understand verb (KNOW)

to know the meaning of something, or to know how a person feels and why the person behaves in a particular way: [+ question word] I don’t understand what he means. [T] Is there anyone here who understands English? [T] It was so noisy I couldn’t understand (= recognize) a word he was saying. [I] If you choose not to come, I’ll understand. [T] He claimed that no one ever understood him (= had any sympathy for him or knew what he was feeling). [+ question word] I understand how she feels about the loss of her dog. [T] It is understood that (= Everyone knows and accepts that) you don’t bring food or drinks into the library.

understand verb (BELIEVE)

[T] to believe something is true because you have been told something that causes you to think it: [+ (that) clause] I understand (that) the show will go on, but with a different cast. I understood him to say (= I believed that he said) that the trip had been canceled.
(Definition of understand from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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