: to watch and sometimes also listen to (someone or something) carefully
: to see and notice (someone or something)
Full Definition of OBSERVE
1: to conform one’s action or practice to (as a law, rite, or condition) : comply with
2: to inspect or take note of as an augury, omen, or presage
3: to celebrate or solemnize (as a ceremony or festival) in a customary or accepted way
4a : to watch carefully especially with attention to details or behavior for the purpose of arriving at a judgment
b : to make a scientific observation on or of
5: to come to realize or know especially through consideration of noted facts
6: to utter as a remark
Examples of OBSERVE
- The class will be observing the movements of fish.
- The patient must be observed constantly.
- Children learn by observing their parents and others.
- The new teacher will give the lesson today and the principal will observe.
- We observed a large flock of birds heading north.
- He observed two children playing with marbles on the street corner.
- She observed that every man in the room had removed his hat.
- Few cases of the disease have been observed in humans.
- “Observe everything” DBZ 2013 (see 4a. above)
Origin of OBSERVE
Middle English, from Anglo-French observer, from Latin observare to guard, watch, observe, from ob- in the way, toward + servare to keep — more at conserve
First Known Use: 14th century