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Meaning of “read” in the English Dictionary

"read" in British English

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readverb

uk   /riːd/  us   /riːd/ (read, read uk   /red/ us   )
  • read verb (UNDERSTAND)

A1 [I or T] to look at words or symbols and understand what they mean: He spent a pleasant afternoon reading (the newspaper/a book). I read about the family's success in the local paper. It was too dark to read our map and we took a wrong turning. Can you read music? Your handwriting is so untidy I can't read it. [+ (that)] I've read in the newspapers (that) there is a threat of war. Put your plastic card in the slot, and the machine will read it and identify who you are. Some children can read (= have learned the skill of reading) by the age of four.
A2 [I or T] to say the words that are printed or written: She read (the poem) slowly and quietly. [+ two objects] Their teacher always reads them a story at the end of the day. Children love to have stories read (aloud/out) to them.
C2 [T] to understand and give a particular meaning to written information, a statement, a situation, etc.: She missed the train because she read 18.30 p.m. as 8.30 p.m. instead of 6.30 p.m. On page 19, for "Blitish", please read "British". If I've read the situation correctly, we should have some agreement on the contract by the end of the week.
[I or T] How you read a piece of writing, or how it reads, is how it seems when you read it: The letter reads as if it was written in a hurry. Her latest novel reads well (= is written in an attractive way).
[T] (especially when communicating by radio), to hear and understand someone: Do you read me? I read you loud and clear.
read sb to sleep
to read aloud to someone until they go to sleep: Every night when I was a child my father used to read me to sleep.

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  • read verb (STATE)

[L] (of something written or printed) to have or give the stated information or meaning: [+ speech] The start of the US Constitution reads "We, the people of the United States..." The thermometer is reading 40°C in the shade.
  • read verb (STUDY)

[I or T] UK formal or specialized law to study at university or to study for a specialized qualification: They're both reading history at Cambridge. She's reading for the Bar (= studying to become a type of lawyer called a barrister).

readnoun [S]

uk   /riːd/  us   /riːd/
(Definition of read from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"read" in American English

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readverb

 us   /rid/
  • read verb (OBTAIN MEANING)

[I/T] (past tense and past participle read  /red/ ) to obtain meaning or information by looking at written words or symbols: [T] I read the book over the weekend. [I] She couldn’t read or write. [I] Did you read about the plan to build a new road to the airport? [+ that clause] I read that the job market for teachers is excellent. [T] He reads music.
[I/T] (past tense and past participle read  /red/ ) To read is also to say aloud the written words: [I/T] She read the story to the class.
  • read verb (UNDERSTAND)

[I/T] to understand the meaning or intention of something: [T] If I’ve read the situation right, we’ll soon have agreement on a contract.
  • read verb (SHOW/STATE)

(past tense and past participle read  /red/ ) to show or state information: [L] The sign read, "No parking here to corner."
(past tense and past participle read  /red/ ) If you read a device, you look at the measurement it shows: [T] The gas company sends someone to read the meter every month.
(Definition of read from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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