use-icon

HOW TO USE THE DICTIONARY

Learn what the dictionary tells you about words.

Get Started Now!

Some compound words (like bus rapid transit, dog whistle, or identity theft) don’t appear on the drop-down list when you enter them into the search window. If a compound term doesn’t appear in the drop-down list, try entering the term into the search window and then hit the search button (instead of the “enter” key). Alternatively, begin searches for compound terms with a quotation mark.

use-icon

THE USAGE PANEL

The Usage Panel is a group of nearly 200 prominent scholars, creative writers, journalists, diplomats, and others in occupations requiring mastery of language. The Panelists are surveyed annually to gauge the acceptability of particular usages and grammatical constructions.

The Panelists

puzzle-icon

NEED HELP SOLVING A CROSSWORD PUZZLE?

Go to our Crossword Puzzle Solver and type in the letters that you know, and the Solver will produce a list of possible solutions.

open-icon

INTERESTED IN DICTIONARIES?

Check out the Dictionary Society of North America at http://www.dictionarysociety.com

open-icon

AMERICAN HERITAGE DICTIONARY APP

The new American Heritage Dictionary app is now available for iOS and Android.

scroll-icon

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:

Indo-European Roots

Semitic Roots

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.

open-icon

OPEN DICTIONARY PROJECT

Share your ideas for new words and new meanings of old words!

Start Sharing Now!

100-words-icon

See word lists from the best-selling 100 Words Series!

Find out more!

re·cov·er (rĭ-kŭvər)
Share:
v. re·cov·ered, re·cov·er·ing, re·cov·ers
v.tr.
1.
a. To get back (something lost or taken away), especially by making an effort: recovered his keys near the water cooler; recovered the ball in the end zone.
b. To search for, find, and bring back: divers recovered the body; researchers recovering fossils.
c. To get back control or possession of (land) by military conquest or legal action.
2.
a. To have (the use, possession, or control of something) restored: recovered the use of his fingers.
b. To regain the use of (a faculty) or be restored to (a normal or usual condition): recovered his wits after hearing the news; recovered his health after treatment.
c. To cause to be restored to a normal or usual condition: After two weeks on the medicine, he was fully recovered.
3. To discover or be able to follow (a trail or scent) after losing it.
4.
a. To procure (usable substances, such as metal) from unusable substances, such as ore or waste.
b. To bring (land) into or return to a suitable condition for use; reclaim.
5. To bring under observation again: "watching the comet since it was first recoveredfirst spotted since its 1910 visit" (Christian Science Monitor).
v.intr.
1. To regain a normal or usual condition, as of health: a patient who recovered from the flu; businesses that recovered quickly from the recession.
2. To receive a favorable judgment in a lawsuit.

[Middle English recoveren, from Old French recoverer, from Latin recuperāre; see RECUPERATE.]

re·cover·a·ble adj.
re·cover·er n.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 

This website is best viewed in Chrome, Firefox, Microsoft Edge, or Safari. Some characters in pronunciations and etymologies cannot be displayed properly in Internet Explorer.