v. & n.
v. 1 intr. & tr. (often foll. by out) stretch out; extend. 2 intr. stretch out a limb, the hand, etc.; make a reaching motion or effort. 3 intr. (often foll. by for) make a motion or effort to touch or get hold of, or to attain (reached for his pipe). 4 tr. get as far as; arrive at (reached Lincoln at lunch-time; your letter reached me today). 5 tr. get to or attain (a specified point) on a scale (the temperature reached 90ø; the number of applications reached 100). 6 intr. (foll. by to) attain to; be adequate for (my income will not reach to it). 7 tr. succeed in achieving; attain (have reached agreement). 8 tr. make contact with the hand etc., or by telephone etc. (was out all day and could not be reached). 9 tr. succeed in influencing or having the required effect on (could not manage to reach their audience). 10 tr. hand, pass (reach me that book). 11 tr. take with an outstretched hand. 12 intr. Naut. sail with the wind abeam or abaft the beam.
n. 1 the extent to which a hand etc. can be reached out, influence exerted, motion carried out, or mental powers used. 2 an act of reaching out. 3 a continuous extent, esp. a stretch of river between two bends, or the part of a canal between locks. 4 Naut. a distance traversed in reaching. out of reach not able to be reached or attained. reach-me-down ready-made. reachable adj. reacher n.
[ OE rcan f. WG ]