• WordNet 3.6
    • v watch find out, learn, or determine with certainty, usually by making an inquiry or other effort "I want to see whether she speaks French","See whether it works","find out if he speaks Russian","Check whether the train leaves on time"
    • v watch observe with attention "They watched as the murderer was executed"
    • v watch observe or determine by looking "Watch how the dog chases the cats away"
    • v watch look attentively "watch a basketball game"
    • v watch see or watch "view a show on television","This program will be seen all over the world","view an exhibition","Catch a show on Broadway","see a movie"
    • v watch be vigilant, be on the lookout or be careful "Watch out for pickpockets!"
    • v watch follow with the eyes or the mind "Keep an eye on the baby, please!","The world is watching Sarajevo","She followed the men with the binoculars"
    • n watch a purposeful surveillance to guard or observe
    • n watch the rite of staying awake for devotional purposes (especially on the eve of a religious festival)
    • n watch a small portable timepiece
    • n watch a person employed to keep watch for some anticipated event
    • n watch a period of time (4 or 2 hours) during which some of a ship's crew are on duty
    • n watch the period during which someone (especially a guard) is on duty
    • ***

Additional illustrations & photos:

"The skipper glanced at his watch." "The skipper glanced at his watch."
A woman, an elderly man and two children watch butterflies in a garden A woman, an elderly man and two children watch butterflies in a garden
A girl and a boy watch a woman working at bobbin lace A girl and a boy watch a woman working at bobbin lace
The Governor took out his watch The Governor took out his watch
The Last Watch of Hero The Last Watch of Hero
Kabo watches from the surface Kabo watches from the surface
The princess watches the bird carrying the camels The princess watches the bird carrying the camels
The New Watch-Dog The New Watch-Dog

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: The watch was invented by Peter Henlein of Nuremberg in 1510.
    • watch a clock or watch which can be so set as to ring or strike loudly at a prearranged hour, to wake from sleep, or excite attention.
    • Watch A small timepiece, or chronometer, to be carried about the person, the machinery of which is moved by a spring.
    • Watch (Naut) An allotted portion of time, usually four hour for standing watch, or being on deck ready for duty. Cf. Dogwatch.
    • Watch One who watches, or those who watch; a watchman, or a body of watchmen; a sentry; a guard. "Pilate said unto them, Ye have a watch ; go your way, make it as sure as ye can."
    • Watch (Naut) That part, usually one half, of the officers and crew, who together attend to the working of a vessel for an allotted time, usually four hours. The watches are designated as the port watch, and the starboard watch.
    • Watch The act of watching; forbearance of sleep; vigil; wakeful, vigilant, or constantly observant attention; close observation; guard; preservative or preventive vigilance; formerly, a watching or guarding by night. "Shepherds keeping watch by night.""All the long night their mournful watch they keep.""Still, when she slept, he kept both watch and ward .""Ward , guard, or custodia , is chiefly applied to the daytime, in order to apprehend rioters, and robbers on the highway . . . Watch , is properly applicable to the night only, . . . and it begins when ward ends, and ends when that begins."
    • Watch The period of the night during which a person does duty as a sentinel, or guard; the time from the placing of a sentinel till his relief; hence, a division of the night. "I did stand my watch upon the hill.""Might we but hear . . . Or whistle from the lodge, or village cock
      Count the night watches to his feathery dames."
    • Watch The post or office of a watchman; also, the place where a watchman is posted, or where a guard is kept. "He upbraids Iago, that he made him
      Brave me upon the watch ."
    • Watch To be attentive or vigilant; to give heed; to be on the lookout; to keep guard; to act as sentinel. "Take ye heed, watch and pray.""The Son gave signal high
      To the bright minister that watched ."
    • Watch To be awake; to be or continue without sleep; to wake; to keep vigil. "I have two nights watched with you.""Couldest thou not watch one hour ?"
    • Watch To be expectant; to look with expectation; to wait; to seek opportunity. "My soul waiteth for the Lord more than they that watch for the morning."
    • Watch To give heed to; to observe the actions or motions of, for any purpose; to keep in view; not to lose from sight and observation; as, to watch the progress of a bill in the legislature. "Saul also sent messengers unto David's house to watch him, and to slay him.""I must cool a little, and watch my opportunity.""In lazy mood I watched the little circles die."
    • Watch To remain awake with any one as nurse or attendant; to attend on the sick during the night; as, to watch with a man in a fever.
    • Watch (Naut) To serve the purpose of a watchman by floating properly in its place; -- said of a buoy.
    • Watch To tend; to guard; to have in keeping. "And flaming ministers, to watch and tend
      Their earthy charge."
      "Paris watched the flocks in the groves of Ida."
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
  • Interesting fact: An average American child watches approximately 28 hours of television in one week
    • watch To assign to a watch.
    • n watch The state of being awake; wake-fulness.
    • n watch A keeping awake for the purpose of attending, guarding, or preserving; attendance with out sleep; preservative or preventive vigilance; vigil.
    • n watch A wake. See wake, n., 2.
    • n watch Close, constant, observation; vigilant attention; careful, continued notice; supervision; vigilance; outlook: as, to be on the watch.
    • n watch A person, or number of persons, whose duty it is to watch over the persons, property, or interests of others; a watchman, or body of watchmen; a sentinel; a sentry; guard.
    • n watch The period of time during which one person or body of persons watch or stand sentinel, or the time from one relief of sentinels to another; hence, a division of the night, when the precautionary setting of a watch is most generally necessary; period of time; hour. The Jews, like the Greeks and Romans, divided the night into military watches instead of hours, each watch representing the period for which each separate body of sentinels remained on duty. The proper Jewish reckoning recognized only-three such watches: the first (lasting from sunset till about 10 p. m..), the second or middle watch (10 p. m.. to 2 a. m.), and the third, or morning watch (from 2 a. m. till sunrise). After the establishment of the Roman power they were increased to four, which were named as first, second, etc., or by the terms even, midnight, cock-crowing, and morning, these terminating respectively at 9 P.M., midnight, 3 A.M., and 6 A.M.
    • n watch Nautical:
    • n watch The period of time occupied by each part of a ship's crew alternately while on duty. The period of time called a watch is four hours, the reckoning beginning at noon or midnight. Between 4 and 8 p. m. the time is divided into two short watches, or dog-watches, in order to prevent the constant recurrence of duty to the same portion of the crew during the same hours. Thus, the period from 12 to 4 p. m. is called the afternoon watch, from 4 to 6 the first dog-watch, from 6 to 8 the second dog-watch, from 8 to 12 the first night watch, from midnight to 4 a. m. the middle watch, from 4 to 8 the morning watch, and from 8 to 12 noon the forenoon watch. When this alternation of watches is kept up during the 24 hours, it is termed having watch and watch, in distinction from keeping all hands at work during one or more watches.
    • n watch A certain part of the officers and crew of a vessel who together attend to working her for an allotted time. The crew of every vessel while at sea is generally divided into two parts: the starboard watch, which in the merchant service is the captain's watch, and is often commanded by the second mate; and the port or larboard watch, which in the merchant service is commanded by the chief mate. In the British and United States navies these watches are commanded by the lieu tenants successively. The anchor-watch is a small watch composed of one or two men appointed to look after the ship while at anchor or in port.
    • n watch Anything by which the progress of time is perceived and measured. A candle marked out into sections, each of which required a certain time to burn.
    • n watch A small portable timepiece or timekeeper that may be worn on the person, operated by power stored in a coiled spring, and capable of keeping time when held in any position. Watches were invented at Nüremberg about the be ginning of the sixteenth century, and for a long time the wearing of a watch was considered in some degree a mark or proof of gentility. Thus Malvolio remarks in anticipation of his great fortune:
    • n watch plural A name of the trumpetleaf, Sarracenia flava, probably alluding to the resemblance of the flowers to watches.
    • n watch In pottery, a trial piece of clay so placed in a kiln that it can be readily withdrawn to enable the workmen to judge by its appearance of the heat of the fire and the condition of the ware remaining in the saggars.
    • n watch In hawking, a company or flight, as of nightingales.
    • watch To be awake; be or continue without sleep; keep vigil.
    • watch To be attentive, circumspect, or vigilant; be closely observant; notice carefully; give heed.
    • watch To act as a watchman, guard, sentinel, or the like; keep watch.
    • watch To look forward with expectation; be expectant; seek opportunity; wait.
    • watch To act as attendant or nurse on the sick by night; remain awake to give attendance, assistance, or the like: as, to watch with a patient in a fever.
    • watch To float on the surface of the water: said of a buoy.
    • watch To look with close attention at or on; keep carefully and constantly in view or supervision; keep a sharp lookout on or for; observe, notice, or regard with vigilance and care; keep an eye upon.
    • watch To have in keeping; tend; guard; take care of.
    • watch To look for; wait for.
    • watch To take or detect by lying in wait; surprise.
    • watch In falconry, to keep awake; keep from sleep, as a hawk, for the purpose of exhausting and taming it.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: You burn more calories sleeping than you do watching television
    • n Watch woch act of looking out: close observation: guard: one who watches or those who watch: a sentry: a pocket timepiece: the place where a guard is kept: a division of the night: time of watching, esp. in a ship, a division of a ship's crew into two or three sections, so that one set of men may have charge of the vessel while the others rest. (The day and night are divided into watches of four hours each, except the period from 4 to 8 P.M., which is divided into two dog-watches of two hours' duration each)
    • v.i Watch to look with attention: to keep guard: to look out: to attend the sick by night: to inspect, keep guard over (with over)
    • v.t Watch to keep in view: to give heed to: to have in keeping: to guard: to wait for, detect by lying in wait:
    • v.t Watch (Shak.) to keep from sleep
    • ***


  • Clarence Buddinton Kelland
    Clarence Buddinton Kelland
    “My father didn't tell me how to live; he lived, and let me watch him do it.”
  • Jim Rohn
    “The few who do are the envy of the many who only watch.”
  • John Madden
    John Madden
    “Coaches have to watch for what they don't want to see and listen to what they don't want to hear.”
  • Babe Ruth
    Babe Ruth
    “Watch my dust.”
  • Samuel Johnson
    “Dictionaries are like watches; the worst is better than none, and the best cannot be expected to be quite true.”
  • Michael Jackson
    Michael Jackson
    “The greatest education in the world is watching the masters at work.”


A watched pot never boils - Some things work out in their own time, so being impatient and constantly checking will just make things seem longer.
Don't know whether to wind a watch or bark at the moon - If you don't know what to do, you don't know whether to wind a watch or bark at the moon.
On my watch - If someoething happens on your watch, you are responsible for it as you were in charge.
Watch grass grow - If something is like watching grass grow, it is really boring.
Watch your back - If someone is after your job, or wants to harm you in any way, you need to "watch your back" to metaphorically see what is going on behind you
Watch your six - (USA) This idiom means that you should look behind you for dangers coming that you can't see.
Watching paint dry - If something is like watching paint dry, it is really boring.


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
OE. wacche, AS. wæcce, fr. wacian, to wake; akin to D. wacht, waak, G. wacht, wache,. √134. See Wake (v. i.)


In literature:

It seemed to be watching her sullenly as a small child watches an intruder.
"Stubble" by George Looms
He merely drew his blanket a little closer, and resolved that one pair of eyes should watch as well as two had watched before.
"The Border Watch" by Joseph A. Altsheler
With growing uneasiness he watched old Frank go to Earle, tail depressed, eyes troubled.
"Frank of Freedom Hill" by Samuel A. Derieux
Generally used to distinguish the watch on deck, and those off the watch.
"The Sailor's Word-Book" by William Henry Smyth
From the ground the wife and mother watched motionless with wide eyes.
"The Huntress" by Hulbert Footner
The people on the sidewalks stood still and watched.
"Jim Spurling, Fisherman" by Albert Walter Tolman
To those watching from the cliff, it looked like a moving forest.
"The Later Cave-Men" by Katharine Elizabeth Dopp
After a pause, Lord Henry pulled out his watch.
"The Picture of Dorian Gray" by Oscar Wilde
Somewhat crestfallen the boy slipped to the stool and for a few moments remained immovable, watching the workman's busy fingers.
"Christopher and the Clockmakers" by Sara Ware Bassett
He was watching, watching, with every faculty alert.
"The Watchers of the Plains" by Ridgewell Cullum

In poetry:

Then shall they find me
Close at thy head
Watching or fainting,
Sleeping or dead.
"True Love" by Elizabeth Eleanor Siddal
Sleep, little darlin', sleep;
God watch o'er thee!
Thou'rt o' that's left i'th world
To comfort me!
"Cradle Song" by Edwin Waugh
For now at whiles I meet
In eves of weariness
Your sweetly watchful eyes
That know my still distress;
"Change" by Clark Ashton Smith
If you see a dreamy light,
'Tis the Christ-Child's eyes;
I believe he watches us,
Wonderful and wise.
"In The Trenches" by Katherine Hale
And I who am lying watching,
With a dreamer's idle eye,
The changes coming and going
Between the earth and sky.
"Shadow And Sunshine" by Alexander Anderson
The clouds in woe hang far and dim;
I look again, and lo,
Only a faint and shadow line
Of shore--I watch it go.
"Last Sight Of Land" by Cale Young Rice

In news:

Watching this video kind of makes me sad to watch regular American football.
How We Watch What We Watch.
Watching this video is a lot like watching the Jerry Springer Show.
For the purpose of avid watch fans along with connoisseurs Patek Phillippe and its particular exceptional number of watches always have got great fantasy.
If you can handle watching the human body bend in the wrong direction then this may be hard to watch.
If Big Brother 's going to watch, he should watch everybody.
Welcome to Watch List, where we identify five things on TV to watch while you stay at home and prank call LeBron James LET'S GO.
Last night's Victoria Secret Fashion Show was awesome Uhhh I watched just to see Bieber, Rihanna, and Bruno Mars perform yup, that's why I watched.only reason promise.
There'll be more people watching this game tonight than perhaps have ever watched anything to do with Towson University in our history, going back 146 years.
I watched PBS's convention coverage for fear if Mitt Romney gets elected we might not get the chance to watch PBS.
Severe Watches (data updates when new watches are issued or cancelled).
Excessive Heat Watch Flood Watch.
Severe Thunderstorm Watch Flash Flood Watch.
I have lots of friends who can just sit and watch and watch and watch, hour after hour, the reality shows.
While most kids were watching Sesame Street and Barney, I was watching Child's Play and Friday the 13th.

In science:

It is composed of sensitive information: the rating that an individual gives to a particular movie (and the very fact that he watched said movie) can be possibly compromising information.
Beating Randomized Response on Incoherent Matrices
The Gaia alert system group also proposes to activate and maintain a watch list, providing data for ob jects known to be interesting and important to follow-up (e.g.
The impact of Gaia and LSST on binary stars and exo-planets
The probability that a verifier V accepts an input string w (i.e. ends up in qa ) as the result of watching a debate π between P1 and P0 presented to it through the reading cells as described above is denoted by P (a)w (V ,π) . P (r)w (V ,π) denotes the probability that V rejects w in such a scenario.
Checking generalized debates with small space and randomness
We then computed the speed of the resulting front by watching the point at which ψi = 0.01.
Selection, Stability and Renormalization
Capabilities include setting breakpoints, watching variables, array visualization, and monitoring process status.
Cluster Computing White Paper