Meaning of READ in English

The form 'read' is pronounced /ri:d/ when it is the present tense, and /red/ when it is the past tense and past participle.

( reading)

Frequency: The word is one of the 700 most common words in English.


When you read something such as a book or article, you look at and understand the words that are written there.

Have you read this book?...

I read about it in the paper...

He read through the pages slowly and carefully...

It was nice to read that the Duke will not be sending his son off to boarding school...

She spends her days reading and watching television.

VERB : V n , V about n , V through n , V that , V

Read is also a noun.

I settled down to have a good read.

N-SING : a N


When you read a piece of writing to someone, you say the words aloud.

Jay reads poetry so beautifully...

I like it when she reads to us...

I sing to the boys or read them a story before tucking them in.

VERB : V n , V to n , V n n , also V n to n , V


People who can read have the ability to look at and understand written words.

He couldn’t read or write...

He could read words at 18 months.

VERB : V , V n


If you can read music, you have the ability to look at and understand the symbols that are used in written music to represent musical sounds.

Later on I learned how to read music.

VERB : V n


When a computer reads a file or a document, it takes information from a disk or tape. ( COMPUTING )

How can I read a Microsoft Excel file on a computer that only has Works installed?

VERB : V n


You can use read when saying what is written on something or in something. For example, if a notice reads ‘Entrance’, the word ‘Entrance’ is written on it.

The sign on the bus read ‘Private: Not In Service’.

VERB : no cont , V with quote


If you refer to how a piece of writing reads , you are referring to its style.

The book reads like a ballad...

VERB : V prep / adv


If you say that a book or magazine is a good read , you mean that it is very enjoyable to read.

Ben Okri’s latest novel is a good read.

N-COUNT : adj N


If something is read in a particular way, it is understood or interpreted in that way.

The play is being widely read as an allegory of imperialist conquest...

South Africans were praying last night that he has read the situation correctly...

= interpret

VERB : be V-ed as n , V n adv / prep


If you read someone’s mind or thoughts, you know exactly what they are thinking without them telling you.

As if he could read her thoughts, Benny said, ‘You’re free to go any time you like.’

VERB : V n


If you can read someone or you can read their gestures, you can understand what they are thinking or feeling by the way they behave or the things they say.

If you have to work in a team you must learn to read people...

VERB : V n


If someone who is trying to talk to you with a radio transmitter says, ‘Do you read me?’, they are asking you if you can hear them.

We read you loud and clear. Over.

VERB : V n


When you read a measuring device, you look at it to see what the figure or measurement on it is.

It is essential that you are able to read a thermometer.

VERB : V n


If a measuring device reads a particular amount, it shows that amount.

The thermometer read 105 degrees Fahrenheit...

VERB : V amount


If you read a subject at university, you study it. ( BRIT FORMAL; in AM, use major , study )

She read French and German at Cambridge University...

He is now reading for a maths degree at Surrey University.

VERB : V n , V for n


If you take something as read , you accept it as true or right and therefore feel that it does not need to be discussed or proved.

We took it as read that he must have been a KGB agent...

PHRASE : V inflects


to read between the lines: see line

see also reading

Collins COBUILD Advanced Learner's English Dictionary.      Английский словарь Коллинз COBUILD для изучающих язык на продвинутом уровне.