Definition of appear verb from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary





1 linking verb (not used in the progressive tenses) to give the impression of being or doing something synonym seem + adjectiveShe didn't appear at all surprised at the news.It appears unlikely that interest rates will fall further. appear to be somethingI don't think he's sick. He appears to be normal.She appeared to be in her late thirties. appear to do somethingThey appeared not to know what was happening.There appears to have been a mistake. it appears (that)…It appears that there has been a mistake.It would appear that this was a major problem.

be seen

2 [intransitive] to start to be seenThree days later a rash appeared. + adverb/prepositionA bus appeared around the corner.Smoke appeared on the horizon.Posters for the gig appeared all over town.New shoots are just appearing at the base of the plant.

begin to exist

3 [intransitive] + adverb/preposition to begin to exist or be known or used for the first timeWhen did mammals appear on the earth?This problem first appeared in the inner cities.

of book/program

4 [intransitive] + adverb/preposition to be published or broadcastHis new book will be appearing in the spring.It was too late to prevent the story from appearing in the national newspapers.These allegations appear in a forthcoming documentary.

in movie/play

5 [intransitive] + adverb/preposition to take part in a movie, play, television program, etc.He has appeared in over 60 movies.She regularly appears on TV.Next month he will be appearing as George Bush in a new play on Broadway.


6 [intransitive] + adverb/preposition to arrive at a placeBy ten o'clock, Lee still hadn't appeared.

be written/mentioned

7 [intransitive] + adverb/preposition to be written or mentioned somewhereYour name will appear at the front of the book.

in court

8 [intransitive] + adverb/preposition to be present in court in order to give evidence or answer a chargeA man who is charged with the murder will appear in court today.She is expected to appear in small claims court on Monday.She appeared on six charges of theft.They will appear before the judge tomorrow.He has been asked to appear as a witness for the defense.9 [intransitive] appear for/on behalf of someone to act as someone's lawyer in courtAlan Dershowitz is the lawyer appearing for the defendant. see also apparent compare disappear
Usage noteUsage note: perhapsmaking an opinion sound less definiteMost cybercrime involves traditional crimes, such as theft and fraud, being committed in new ways. Phishing is perhaps/possibly/probably the best-known example of this.It seems/appears that the more personal data that organizations collect, the more opportunity there is for this information to be lost or stolen.It seems clear that the widespread use of Social Security numbers to identify people contributes to the problem of identity theft.It could be argued that the widespread use of Social Security numbers to identify people contributes to the problem of identity theft.It is possible that/It may be that the only way to protect ourselves against DNA identity theft is to avoid the creation of national DNA databases.⇨ Language Banks at impersonal, opinion