English edit

Etymology edit

From Middle English cacchen, from Anglo-Norman cachier, variant of Old French chacier, from Late Latin captiāre, from Latin captāre, frequentative of capere. Akin to Modern French chasser (from Old French chacier) and Spanish cazar, and thus a doublet of chase. Displaced Middle English fangen ("to catch"; > Modern English fang (verb)), from Old English fōn (to seize, take); Middle English lacchen ("to catch" and heavily displaced Modern English latch), from Old English læċċan.

The verb became irregular, possibly under the influence of the semantically similar latch (from Old English læċċan) whose past tense was lahte, lauhte, laught (Old English læhte) until becoming regularised in Modern English.

Pronunciation edit

  • enPR: kăch, IPA(key): /kæt͡ʃ/
    • (file)
    • (file)
  • (US) enPR: kăch, kĕch, IPA(key): /kæt͡ʃ/, /kɛt͡ʃ/
    • (file)
    • Noah Webster's American Dictionary (1828) regards /kɛt͡ʃ/ as the "popular or common pronunciation."[1] It is labeled "not infreq[uent]" in Kenyon & Knott (1949).[2]
  • (Southern American English, obsolete) enPR: kŏch, IPA(key): /kɑt͡ʃ/ (see cotch)[3]
  • Rhymes: -ætʃ, -ɛtʃ

Noun edit

catch (countable and uncountable, plural catches)

  1. (countable) The act of seizing or capturing.
    The catch of the perpetrator was the product of a year of police work.
  2. (countable) The act of catching an object in motion, especially a ball.
    The player made an impressive catch.
    Nice catch!
  3. (countable) The act of noticing, understanding or hearing.
    Good catch. I never would have remembered that.
    • 2008, John I. Carney, Soapstone, page 74:
      "In that case," said Jeff, "I just thought of something else we need." He walked over to one of the stations that was selling household goods and bought a can opener.
      "Nice catch," said Lucy.
  4. (uncountable) The game of catching a ball.
    The kids love to play catch.
  5. (countable) Something which is captured or caught.
    The fishermen took pictures of their catch.
    The catch amounted to five tons of swordfish.
  6. (countable, colloquial, by extension) A find, in particular a boyfriend or girlfriend or prospective spouse.
    Did you see his latest catch?
    He's a good catch.
    • 2014 July 10, Jocelyn Samara D., Rain (webcomic), Comic 561 - A Catch:
      "Aaaugh! Just once, I wish I could be considered a catch by men younger than fifty..."
  7. (countable) A stopping mechanism, especially a clasp which stops something from opening.
    She installed a sturdy catch to keep her cabinets closed tight.
  8. (countable) A hesitation in voice, caused by strong emotion.
    There was a catch in his voice when he spoke his father's name.
  9. (countable, sometimes noun adjunct) A concealed difficulty, especially in a deal or negotiation.
    It sounds like a great idea, but what's the catch?
    Be careful, that's a catch question.
  10. (countable) A crick; a sudden muscle pain during unaccustomed positioning when the muscle is in use.
    I bent over to see under the table and got a catch in my side.
  11. (countable) A fragment of music or poetry.
    • 1852, Mrs M.A. Thompson, “The Tutor's Daughter”, in Graham's American Monthly Magazine of Literature, Art, and Fashion[1], page 266:
      In the lightness of my heart I sang catches of songs as my horse gayly bore me along the well-remembered road.
    • 1872, Harriet Martineau, Deerbrook, page 90:
      "'Fair Enslaver!'" cried Mr. Enderby. "You must know 'Fair Enslaver:' there is not a sweeter catch than that. Come, Miss Ibbotson, begin; your sister will follow, and I—"
      But it so happened that Miss Ibbotson had never heard 'Fair Enslaver.'
  12. (obsolete) A state of readiness to capture or seize; an ambush.
    • 1678, John Bunyan, The Pilgrim's Progress, Part I Section 3:
      You lie at the catch again: this is not for edification.
    • 1655, Thomas Fuller, edited by James Nichols, The Church History of Britain, [], new edition, volumes (please specify |volume=I to III), London: [] [James Nichols] for Thomas Tegg and Son, [], published 1837, →OCLC:
      The common and the canon law [] lie at catch, and wait advantages one against another.
      The spelling has been modernized.
  13. (countable, agriculture) A crop which has germinated and begun to grow.
    • 1905, Eighth Biennial Report of the Board of Horticulture of the State of Oregon[2], page 204:
      There was a good catch of rye and a good fall growth.
  14. (obsolete) A type of strong boat, usually having two masts; a ketch.
    • 1612, John Smith, Map of Virginia, Kupperman, published 1988, page 158:
      Fourteene miles Northward from the river Powhatan, is the river Pamaunke, which is navigable 60 or 70 myles, but with Catches and small Barkes 30 or 40 myles farther.
  15. (countable, music) A type of humorous round in which the voices gradually catch up with one another; usually sung by men and often having bawdy lyrics.
    • 1610–1611 (date written), William Shakespeare, “The Tempest”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies [] (First Folio), London: [] Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, →OCLC, [Act III, scene ii]:
      Let us be jocund: will you troll the catch / You taught me but while-ere?
    • 1966, Allen Tate, T. S. Eliot: The Man and His Work[3], page 76:
      One night, I remember, we sang a catch, written (words and music) by Orlo Williams, for three voices.
  16. (countable, music) The refrain; a line or lines of a song which are repeated from verse to verse.
    • 2003, Robert Hugh Benson, Come Rack! Come Rope![4], page 268:
      The phrase repeated itself like the catch of a song.
  17. (countable, cricket, baseball) The act of catching a hit ball before it reaches the ground, resulting in an out.
    • 1997 May 10, Henry Blofeld, “Cricket: Rose and Burns revive Somerset”, in The Independent[5]:
      It was he who removed Peter Bowler with the help of a good catch at third slip.
  18. (countable, cricket) A player in respect of his catching ability; particularly one who catches well.
    • 1894 September 16, “To Meet Lord Hawke's Team”, in The New York Times[6], page 21:
      [] in the field he is all activity, covers an immense amount of ground, and is a sure catch.
  19. (countable, rowing) The first contact of an oar with the water.
    • 1935 June 7, Robert F. Kelley, “California Crews Impress at Debut”, in The New York Times[7], page 29:
      They are sitting up straighter, breaking their arms at the catch and getting on a terrific amount of power at the catch with each stroke.
  20. (countable, phonetics) A stoppage of breath, resembling a slight cough.
    • 2006, Mitsugu Sakihara et al., Okinawan-English Wordbook[8], →ISBN:
      The glottal stop or glottal catch is the sound used in English in the informal words uh-huh 'yes' and uh-uh 'no'.
  21. Passing opportunities seized; snatches.
  22. A slight remembrance; a trace.
    • 1665, Joseph Glanvill, Scepsis Scientifica: Or, Confest Ignorance, the Way to Science; [], London: [] E. C[otes] for Henry Eversden [], →OCLC:
      We retain a catch of those pretty stories.

Synonyms edit

Derived terms edit

Translations edit

Verb edit

catch (third-person singular simple present catches, present participle catching, simple past and past participle caught)

  1. (heading) To capture, overtake.
    1. (transitive) To capture or snare (someone or something which would rather escape). [from 13thc.]
      I hope I catch a fish.
      He ran but we caught him at the exit.
      The police caught the robber at a nearby casino.
    2. (transitive) To entrap or trip up a person; to deceive. [from 14thc.]
    3. (transitive, figuratively, dated) To marry or enter into a similar relationship with.
      • 1933, Sinclair Lewis, Ann Vickers[9], page 108:
        The public [] said that Miss Bogardus was a suffragist because she had never caught a man; that she wanted something, but it wasn't the vote.
      • 2006, Michael Collier, Georgia Machemer, Medea[10], page 23:
        As for Aspasia, concubinage with Pericles brought her as much honor as she could hope to claim in Athens. [] from the moment she caught her man, this influential, unconventional woman became a lightning rod [].
    4. (transitive) To reach (someone) with a strike, blow, weapon etc. [from 16thc.]
      If he catches you on the chin, you'll be on the mat.
      • 2011 September 28, Jon Smith, “Valencia 1-1 Chelsea”, in BBC Sport:
        The visitors started brightly and had an early chance when Valencia's experienced captain David Albeda gifted the ball to Fernando Torres, but the striker was caught by defender Adil Rami as he threatened to shoot.
    5. (transitive) To overtake or catch up to; to be in time for. [from 17thc.]
      If you leave now you might catch him.
      I would love to have dinner but I have to catch a plane.
      • 2011 Allen Gregory, "Pilot" (season 1, episode 1):
        Allen Gregory DeLongpre: Did anyone catch the Charlie Rose the evening before last. Did you catch it? No, nothing?
      • 2014 December 5, Marina Hyde, “Childbirth is as awful as it is magical, thanks to our postnatal ‘care’”, in The Guardian[11]:
        For reasons I shan’t bore you with, I got them to induce me at 39 weeks, at 10am, with the epidural going in first, and it was all a dream. [] But it was all over in time for my daughter to catch the Nigeria v Argentina World Cup game that evening, during which she seemed to reckon everything was miles offside.
    6. (transitive) To unpleasantly discover unexpectedly; to unpleasantly surprise (someone doing something). [from 17thc.]
      He was caught on video robbing the bank.
      He was caught in the act of stealing a biscuit.
      • 1952, Nikos Kazantzakis, chapter 1, in Carl Wildman, transl., Zorba the Greek, New York, N.Y.: Simon & Schuster, translation of Βίος και πολιτεία του Αλέξη Ζορμπά [Víos kai politeía tou Aléxi Zormpá], →ISBN, page 5:
        Once he caught me gazing lingeringly and eagerly at him. He turned round with that mocking air he assumed when he wanted to hide his feelings.
    7. (transitive) To travel by means of. [from 19thc.]
      catch the bus
      • 1920, Katherine Mansfield [pseudonym; Kathleen Mansfield Murry], “The Escape”, in Bliss and Other Stories, London: Constable & Company, published 1920, →OCLC, page 273:
        The glare, the flies, while they waited, and he and the stationmaster put their heads together over the time-table, trying to find this other train, which, of course, they wouldn't catch.
      • 1987, A.J. Quinnell, In the Name of the Father[12], page 111:
        After about a kilometer I caught a taxi to Santa Croce.
    8. (transitive, rare) To become pregnant. (Only in past tense or as participle.) [from 19thc.]
      • 2002, Orpha Caton, Shadow on the Creek[13], pages 102–103:
        Had Nancy got caught with a child? If so she would destroy her parent's dreams for her.
  2. (heading) To seize hold of.
    1. (transitive, dated) To grab, seize, take hold of. [from 13thc.]
      I caught her by the arm and turned her to face me.
    2. (transitive) To take or replenish something necessary, such as breath or sleep. [from 14thc.]
      I have to stop for a moment and catch my breath
      I caught some Z's on the train.
    3. (transitive) To grip or entangle. [from 17thc.]
      My leg was caught in a tree-root.
    4. (intransitive) To be held back or impeded.
      Be careful your dress doesn't catch on that knob.
      His voice caught when he came to his father's name.
      • 1879, R[ichard] J[efferies], chapter II, in The Amateur Poacher, London: Smith, Elder, & Co., [], →OCLC:
        Orion hit a rabbit once; but though sore wounded it got to the bury, and, struggling in, the arrow caught the side of the hole and was drawn out. Indeed, a nail filed sharp is not of much avail as an arrowhead; you must have it barbed, and that was a little beyond our skill.
    5. (intransitive) To engage with some mechanism; to stick, to succeed in interacting with something or initiating some process.
      Push it in until it catches.
      The engine finally caught and roared to life.
    6. (transitive) To have something be held back or impeded.
      I caught my heel on the threshold.
    7. (intransitive) To make a grasping or snatching motion (at). [from 17thc.]
      He caught at the railing as he fell.
    8. (transitive, of fire) To spread or be conveyed to. [from 18thc.]
      The fire spread slowly until it caught the eaves of the barn.
    9. (transitive, rowing) To grip (the water) with one's oars at the beginning of the stroke. [from 19thc.]
      • 1906, Arthur W. Stevens, Practical Rowing with Scull and Sweep[14], page 63:
        Stop gathering, in that gradual fashion, and catch the water sharply and decisively.
    10. (intransitive, agriculture) To germinate and set down roots. [from 19thc.]
      The seeds caught and grew.
    11. (transitive, surfing) To contact a wave in such a way that one can ride it back to shore.
      • 2001, John Lull, Sea Kayaking Safety & Rescue[15], page 203:
        If you are surfing a wave through the rocks, make sure you have a clear route before catching the wave.
    12. (transitive, computing) To handle an exception. [from 20thc.]
      When the program catches an exception, this is recorded in the log file.
  3. (heading) To intercept.
    1. (transitive) To seize or intercept an object moving through the air (or, sometimes, some other medium). [from 16thc.]
      I will throw you the ball, and you catch it.
      Watch me catch this raisin in my mouth.
    2. (transitive, now rare) To seize (an opportunity) when it occurs. [from 16thc.]
    3. (transitive, cricket) To end a player's innings by catching a hit ball before the first bounce. [from 18thc.]
      Townsend hit 29 before he was caught by Wilson.
    4. (transitive, intransitive, baseball) To play (a specific period of time) as the catcher. [from 19thc.]
      He caught the last three innings.
  4. (heading) To receive (by being in the way).
    1. (transitive) To be the victim of (something unpleasant, painful etc.). [from 13thc.]
      You're going to catch a beating if they find out.
    2. (transitive) To be touched or affected by (something) through exposure. [from 13thc.]
      The sunlight caught the leaves and the trees turned to gold.
      Her hair was caught by the light breeze.
    3. (transitive) To become infected by (an illness). [from 16thc.]
      Everyone seems to be catching the flu this week.
    4. (intransitive) To spread by infection or similar means.
      • 1712 (date written), [Joseph] Addison, Cato, a Tragedy. [], London: [] J[acob] Tonson, [], published 1713, →OCLC, Act I, scene ii, page 5:
        Does the sedition catch from man to man?
      • 1817, Mary Martha Sherwood, Stories Explanatory of the Church Catechism:
        He accosted Mrs. Browne very civilly, told her his wife was very ill, and said he was sadly troubled to get a white woman to nurse her: "For," said he, "Mrs. Simpson has set it abroad that her fever is catching."
    5. (transitive, intransitive) To receive or be affected by (wind, water, fire etc.). [from 18thc.]
      The bucket catches water from the downspout.
      The trees caught quickly in the dry wind.
      • 2003, Jerry Dennis, The Living Great Lakes[16], page 63:
        the sails caught and filled, and the boat jumped to life beneath us.
    6. (transitive) To acquire, as though by infection; to take on through sympathy or infection. [from 16thc.]
      She finally caught the mood of the occasion.
      And the next thing I knew, I had caught feelings for her.
    7. (transitive) To be hit by something.
      He caught a bullet in the back of the head last year.
    8. (intransitive) To serve well or poorly for catching, especially for catching fish.
    9. (intransitive) To get pregnant.
      Well, if you didn't catch this time, we'll have more fun trying again until you do.
  5. (heading) To take in with one's senses or intellect.
    1. (transitive) To grasp mentally: perceive and understand. [from 16thc.]
      Did you catch his name?
      Did you catch the way she looked at him?
      • 1907 August, Robert W[illiam] Chambers, chapter IX, in The Younger Set, New York, N.Y.: D. Appleton & Company, →OCLC:
        “A tight little craft,” was Austin’s invariable comment on the matron; []. ¶ Near her wandered her husband, orientally bland, invariably affable, and from time to time squinting sideways, as usual, in the ever-renewed expectation that he might catch a glimpse of his stiff, retroussé moustache.
    2. (transitive, informal) To take in; to watch or listen to (an entertainment). [from 20thc.]
      I have some free time tonight so I think I'll catch a movie.
    3. (transitive) To reproduce or echo a spirit or idea faithfully. [from 17thc.]
      You've really caught his determination in this sketch.
  6. (heading) To seize attention, interest.
    1. (transitive) To charm or entrance. [from 14thc.]
      • 2004, Catherine Asaro, The Moon's Shadow[17], page 40:
        No, a far more natural beauty caught him.
    2. (transitive) To attract and hold (a faculty or organ of sense). [from 17thc.]
      He managed to catch her attention.
      The enormous scarf did catch my eye.

Usage notes edit

  • The older past and passive participle catched is now nonstandard.

Conjugation edit

Synonyms edit

Antonyms edit

Derived terms edit

Descendants edit

  • French: catch
  • Kabuverdianu:
  • Spanish: cachar

Translations edit

The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.

References edit

  1. ^ Noah Webster, An American Dictionary of the English Language, 1828. byu.edu.
  2. ^ Kenyon & Knott, A Pronouncing Dictionary of American English. archive.org
  3. ^ Hall, Joseph Sargent (March 2, 1942), “1. The Vowel Sounds of Stressed Syllables”, in The Phonetics of Great Smoky Mountain Speech (American Speech: Reprints and Monographs; 4), New York: King's Crown Press, →DOI, →ISBN, § 5, page 25.

French edit

 
French Wikipedia has an article on:
Wikipedia fr

Etymology edit

Derived from English catch-as-catch-can (a style of wrestling now known as catch wrestling). Cognate with French chasser (to hunt).

Pronunciation edit

Noun edit

catch m (uncountable)

  1. wrestling; professional wrestling

Derived terms edit

Further reading edit