v. found (found), find·ing, finds
1. To come upon, often by accident; meet with: found a dime on the floor.
2. To come upon or discover by searching or making an effort: finally found the leak in the pipe.
3. To discover or ascertain through observation, experience, or study: found a solution; find the product of two numbers; found that it didn't really matter.
a. To perceive to be, after experience or consideration: found the gadget surprisingly useful; found the book entertaining.
b. To experience or feel: found comfort in her smile.
5. To recover (something lost): found her keys.
6. To recover the use of; regain: found my voice and replied.
7. To succeed in reaching; arrive at: The dart found its mark.
8. To obtain or acquire by effort: found the money by economizing.
9. To decide on and make a declaration about: The jury deliberated and found a verdict of guilty.
10. To furnish; supply: We can find a bed for you somewhere in the house.
a. To bring (oneself) to an awareness of what one truly wishes to be and do in life.
b. To perceive (oneself) to be in a specific place or condition: found herself at home that night; found himself drawn to the stranger.
To come to a legal decision or verdict: The jury found for the defendant.
1. The act of finding.
2. Something that is found, especially an unexpectedly valuable discovery: The Rosetta stone was a providential archaeological find.
1. To ascertain (something), as through examination or inquiry: I found out the phone number by looking it up. If you're not sure, find out.
2. To detect the true nature or character of; expose: Liars risk being found out.
3. To detect and apprehend; catch: Most embezzlers are found out in the end.
[Middle English finden, from Old English findan; see pent- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.