Date: 1300-1400
Language: Old French
Origin: cerchier 'to go around, examine, search', from Late Latin circare 'to go around', from Latin circum 'around'


2 verb
Related topics: Computers
search2 W3


[intransitive and transitive] to try to find someone or something by looking very carefully:
It was too dark to search further.
search for
An RAF plane searched for the missing men.
I've searched high and low (=everywhere) for my glasses.
search something for something
Detectives are searching the yard for clues.
search in/under/through etc
Alice bent to search through a heap of clothes.


[transitive] to use a computer to find information
search something for something
Search the Web for cheap flights.


[transitive] if someone in authority searches you or the things you are carrying, they look for things you might be hiding
search somebody for something
He was searched by the guards for weapons.


[intransitive] to try to find an explanation or solution
search for
Scientists are still searching for a cure.
She paused, searching for inspiration.

search me!

spoken used to tell someone that you do not know the answer to a question:
'Where is she?' 'Search me!'


[transitive] to examine something carefully in order to find something out, decide something etc:
Anya searched his face anxiously.
searcher noun [countable]

search something ↔ out

phrasal verb
to find something by searching:
We were too tired to search out extra blankets.

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