tr.v. per·ceived, per·ceiv·ing, per·ceives
a. To become aware of (something) directly through any of the senses, especially sight or hearing: We could perceive three figures in the fog.
b. To cause or allow the mind to become aware of (a stimulus): The ear perceives sounds.
2. To achieve understanding of; apprehend: Einstein perceived that energy and matter are equivalent. See Synonyms at see1.
3. To regard or consider; deem: an old technology that is still perceived as useful; a politician who is perceived to be a dissembler.
[Middle English perceiven, from Old French perceivre, from Latin percipere : per-, per- + capere, to seize; see kap- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
The American Heritage Dictionary Blog
Check out our blog, updated regularly, for new words and revised definitions, interesting images from the 5th edition, discussions of usage, and more.
American Heritage Dictionary Products
The American Heritage Dictionary, 5th Edition
The American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms
The American Heritage Roget's Thesaurus
Curious George's Dictionary
The American Heritage Children's Dictionary
The American Heritage Dictionary of Indo-European Roots
The American Heritage Student Grammar Dictionary
The American Heritage Desk Dictionary + Thesaurus
The American Heritage Science Dictionary
The American Heritage Dictionary of Business Terms
The American Heritage Student Dictionary
The American Heritage Essential Student Thesaurus