- 1 [transitive] (rather informal) to choose somebody/something from a group of people or things pick somebody/something Pick a number from one to twenty. She picked the best cake for herself. He picked his words carefully. Have I picked a bad time to talk to you? pick somebody/something to do something He has been picked to play in this week's game. Synonymschooseselect pick decide opt go forThese words all mean to decide which thing or person you want out of the ones that are available.choose to decide which thing or person you want out of the ones that are available:You choose—I can’t decide.select [often passive] to choose somebody/something, usually carefully, from a group of people or things:He was selected for the team. a randomly selected sample of 23 schoolspick (rather informal) to choose somebody/something from a group of people or things:She picked the best cake for herself.choose, select or pick?Choose is the most general of these words and the only one that can be used without an object. When you select something, you choose it carefully, unless you actually say that it is selected randomly/at random. Pick is a more informal word and often a less careful action, used especially when the choice being made is not very important.decide to choose between two or more possibilities:We’re still trying to decide on a venue.opt to choose to take or not to take a particular course of action:After graduating she opted for a career in music. After a lot of thought, I opted against buying a motorbike.go for something (rather informal) to choose something:I think I’ll go for the fruit salad.Patterns to choose/select/pick/decide between A and/or B to choose/select/pick A from B to opt/go for somebody/something to choose/decide/opt to do something to choose/select/pick somebody/something carefully/at random randomly chosen/selected/picked see also hand-picked
- 2 [transitive] pick something to take flowers, fruit, etc. from the plant or the tree where they are growing to pick grapes flowers freshly picked from the garden to go blackberry picking See related entries: Growing crops
- 3 [transitive] to pull or remove something or small pieces of something from something else, especially with your fingers pick something + adv./prep. She picked bits of fluff from his sweater. He picked the nuts off the top of the cake. pick something to pick your nose (= put your finger inside your nose to remove dried mucus) to pick your teeth (= use a small sharp piece of wood to remove pieces of food from your teeth) pick something + adj. The dogs picked the bones clean (= ate all the meat from the bones).
- 4[intransitive, transitive] pick (something) (North American English) = pluck Word Originverb Middle English (earlier as pike, which continues in dialect use): of unknown origin. Compare with Dutch pikken
- 1to choose a horse, etc. that you think is most likely to win a race See related entries: Equine sports
- 2(informal) to make a very good choice
verbjump to other results
BrE BrE//pɪk//; NAmE NAmE//pɪk//Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they pick
BrE BrE//pɪk//; NAmE NAmE//pɪk//he / she / it picks
BrE BrE//pɪks//; NAmE NAmE//pɪks//past simple picked
BrE BrE//pɪkt//; NAmE NAmE//pɪkt//past participle picked
BrE BrE//pɪkt//; NAmE NAmE//pɪkt//-ing form picking
BrE BrE//ˈpɪkɪŋ//; NAmE NAmE//ˈpɪkɪŋ//Growing crops
to walk carefully, choosing the safest, driest, etc. place to put your feet She picked her way delicately over the rough ground.