verb caught caught (kôt)
, catch·es verb, transitive
- To capture or seize, especially after a chase.
- To take by or as if by trapping or snaring.
a. To discover or come upon suddenly, unexpectedly, or accidentally: He was caught in the act of stealing.
b. To become cognizant or aware of suddenly: caught her gazing out the window.
a. To take hold of, especially forcibly or suddenly; grasp: caught me by the arm; caught the reins.
b. To grab so as to stop the motion of: catch a ball.
a. To overtake: The green car caught me on the straightaway.
b. To reach just in time; take: caught the bus to town; catch a wave.
a. To hold, as by snagging or entangling.
b. To cause to become suddenly or accidentally hooked, entangled, or fastened: caught my hem on the stair.
c. To hold up; delay: was caught in traffic for an hour.
- To hit; strike: a punch that caught me in the stomach.
- To check (oneself) during an action: I caught myself before replying.
- To become subject to or to contract, as by exposure to a pathogen: catch a cold.
a. To become affected by or infused with: caught the joyous mood of the festival.
b. To suffer from the receipt of (criticism, for example): caught hell for being late.
a. To take or get suddenly, momentarily, or quickly: We caught a glimpse of the monarch.
b. To hear or listen to: caught the news bulletin on the radio; didn't catch the end of your sentence
a. To grasp mentally; apprehend: I don't catch your meaning.
b. To apprehend and reproduce accurately by or as if by artistic means: an impressionist who caught the effects of wind and water in his paintings.
- To attract and fix; arrest: couldn't catch their attention; caught the teacher's eye.
- To charm; captivate.
- To deceive: failed to be caught by their fraudulent schemes.
a. Informal To go to see (a performance, for example): caught the midnight show.
b. To get (something required), usually quickly or for a brief period: catch some sleep.
- To become held, entangled, or fastened: My coat caught in the car door.
- To act or move so as to hold or grab someone or something: tried to catch at the life preserver.
- To be communicable or infectious; spread.
- To ignite: The fire caught.
- Baseball To act as catcher.
Phrasal Verbs: catch on
- The act of catching; a taking and holding.
- Something that catches, especially a device for fastening or for checking motion.
a. Something caught: The mistake you found was a good catch.
b. Informal One that is worth having, especially an attractive or admirable marital partner.
a. The grabbing and holding of a thrown, kicked, or batted ball before it hits the ground.
b. A game of throwing and catching a ball.
- A quantity that is caught: The catch amounted to 50 fish.
- A choking or stoppage of the breath or voice.
- A stop or break in the operation of a mechanism.
- A tricky or previously unsuspected condition or drawback: It sounds like a good offer, but there may be a catch.
- A snatch; a fragment.
- Music A canonic, often rhythmically intricate composition for three or more voices, popular especially in the 17th and 18th centuries.
To understand; perceive. To become popular: Skateboarding caught on quickly. catch out
To detect (another) in wrongdoing or error. catch up
To move fast enough to attain the same progress as another; draw even: caught up to the leader on the last lap of the race.
To become equal or on a par with another: finally caught up with his brother in height.
To bring an activity to completion or to a state of currentness: catch up on correspondence.
To bring (another) up to date; brief: Let me catch you up on all the gossip.
To seize or lift suddenly: The wind caught up the umbrella and carried it off.
a. To involve, often unwillingly: was caught up in the scandal.
b. To captivate; enthrall: I was caught up in the mood of the evening.
Origin: Middle English cacchen
Origin: , from Old North French cachier, to chase
Origin: , from Latin captāre
Origin: , frequentative of capere, to seize; see kap- in Indo-European roots