American English

Definition of find verb from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



    Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they find
    he / she / it finds
    past simple found
    -ing form finding
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    by chance
  1. 1[transitive] to discover someone or something unexpectedly or by chance find somebody/something Look what I found! We found a great new restaurant near the office. find somebody/something + adj. A whale was found washed up on the shore.
  2. by searching
  3. 2[transitive] to get back something or someone that was lost after searching for it/them find something for somebody Can you find my bag for me? find somebody something Can you find me my bag? find somebody/something I wanted to talk to him but he was nowhere to be found. find somebody/something + adj. The child was found safe and well.
  4. by studying/thinking
  5. 3[transitive] to discover something or someone by searching, studying, or thinking carefully find something/somebody scientists trying to find a cure for cancer I finally found a solution to the problem. I'm having trouble finding anything new to say on this subject. Have they found anyone to replace her yet? find something for somebody Can you find a hotel for me? find somebody something Can you find me a hotel?
  6. by experience/testing
  7. 4[transitive] to discover that something is true after you have tried it, tested it, or experienced it find (that)… I find (that) it pays to be honest. The report found that 30% of the businesses studied had failed within a year. find somebody/something + adj./noun We found the beds very comfortable. find somebody/something to be/do something They found him to be charming. Her blood was found to contain poison. it is found that… It was found that her blood contained poison.
  8. have opinion/feeling
  9. 5[transitive] to have a particular feeling or opinion about something find something + adj. You may find his story hard to believe. You may find it hard to believe his story. I find it amazing that they're still together. find something + noun She finds it a strain to meet new people. Thesaurusregardcall find consider see viewThese words all mean to think about someone or something in a particular way.regard to think of someone or something in a particular way:He seemed to regard the whole thing as a to say that someone or something has particular qualities or characteristics:I wouldn't call German an easy language.find to have a particular feeling or opinion about something:You may find his story hard to believe.consider to think of someone or something in a particular way:Whom do you consider (to be) responsible for the accident?regard or consider?These two words have the same meaning, but they are used in different patterns and structures. In this meaning, consider must be used with a complement or clause: you can consider somebody/something to be something or consider somebody/something as something, although very often the to be or as is left out:He considers himself an expert. They are considered a high-risk group.You can also consider that somebody/something is something and again, the that can be left out. Regard is used in a narrower range of structures. The most frequent structure is regard somebody/something as something; the as cannot be left out:I regard him a close friend.You cannotregard somebody/something to be somethingorregard that somebody/something is something. However, regard (but not consider in this meaning) can also be used without a noun or adjective complement but with just an object and adverb (somebody/something is highly regarded) or adverbial phrase (regard somebody/something with suspicion/jealousy/admiration).see to have an opinion of something:Try to see things from her point of view.view to think of someone or something in a particular way:How do you view your position within the company? View has the same meaning as regard and consider but is slightly less frequent and slightly less formal. The main structures are view somebody/something as somebody/something (you cannot leave out the as) and view somebody/something with something.Patterns to regard/consider/see/view somebody/something as something to regard/consider/see/view somebody/something from a particular perspective to find/consider somebody/something to be something generally/usually/often regarded/considered/seen/viewed as something to regard/consider/view somebody/something favorably/unfavorably
  10. have/make available
  11. 6[transitive] find something to have something available so that you can use it I keep meaning to write, but never seem to find (the) time. How are we going to find $10,000 for a car?
  12. in unexpected situations
  13. 7[transitive] to discover someone or something/yourself doing something or in a particular situation, especially when this is unexpected find somebody/something/yourself + adv./prep. She woke up and found herself in a hospital bed. find somebody/something/yourself + adj. We came home and found him asleep on the sofa. find somebody/something/yourself doing something I suddenly found myself running down the street. find (that)… I was disappointed to find that they had already left.
  14. reach
  15. 8[transitive] find something (of things) to arrive at something naturally; to reach something Most of the money finds its way to the people who need it. The criticism found its mark (= had the intended effect).
  16. exist/grow
  17. 9[transitive] find something + adv./prep. used to say that something exists, grows, etc. somewhere These cacti are found only in the Southwest. You'll find this style of architecture all over New Orleans.
  18. in court
  19. 10[transitive, intransitive] (formal) to make a particular decision in a court case find somebody + adj. The jury found him guilty. How do you find the accused? find in somebody's favor The court found in her favor.
  20. Idioms
    find fault (with somebody/something)
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    to look for and discover mistakes in someone or something; to complain about someone or something
    find it in your heart/yourself to do something
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    to be able or willing to do something Can you find it in your heart to forgive her? He couldn't find it in himself to trust anyone again.
    find/meet your match (in somebody)
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    to meet someone who is equal to, or even better than you in strength, skill, or intelligence He thought he could beat anyone at chess but he's met his match in Peter.
    find your voice/tongue
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    to be able to speak or express your opinion
    find your way (around)
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    to become able to act independently and with confidence I only recently joined the company so I'm still finding my way.
    find your way (to…)
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    to discover the right route (to a place) I hope you can find your way home.
    find your/its way (to/into…)
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    to come to a place or a situation by chance or without intending to He eventually found his way into acting.
    get/find your bearings
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    to make yourself familiar with your surroundings in order to find out where you are or to feel comfortable in a place He paused at the top of the hill, trying to get his bearings.
    nowhere to be found/seen, nowhere in sight
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    impossible for anyone to find or see The children were nowhere to be seen. A peace settlement is nowhere in sight (= is not likely in the near future).
    take somebody as you find them
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    to accept someone as they are without expecting them to behave in a special way or have special qualities
    Phrasal Verbsfind for/against somebodyfind out (about something/somebody)find somebody out
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: find