verb (used without object)

  1. to come into sight; become visible: A man suddenly appeared in the doorway.
  2. to have the appearance of being; seem; look: to appear wise.
  3. to be obvious or easily perceived; be clear or made clear by evidence: It appears to me that you are right.
  4. to come or be placed before the public; be published: Her biography appeared last year.
  5. to perform publicly, as in a play, dance, etc.: He appeared as the king in the play.
  6. to attend or be present, especially to arrive late or stay but a short time: He appeared at the party but left quickly.
  7. to come into being; be created, invented, or developed: Speech appears in the child’s first or second year.
  8. Law. to come formally, especially as a party or counsel, to a proceeding before a tribunal, authority, etc.

verb (intr)

  1. to come into sight or view
  2. (copula; may take an infinitive) to seem or lookthe evidence appears to support you
  3. to be plain or clear, as after further evidence, etcit appears you were correct after all
  4. to develop or come into being; occurfaults appeared during testing
  5. to become publicly available; be publishedhis biography appeared last month
  6. to perform or acthe has appeared in many London productions
  7. to be present in court before a magistrate or judgehe appeared on two charges of theft

also reappear, 1610s, from re- “back, again” + appear. Related: Reappeared; reappearing.


late 13c., “to come into view,” from stem of Old French aparoir (12c., Modern French apparoir) “appear, come to light, come forth,” from Latin apparere “to appear, come in sight, make an appearance,” from ad- “to” (see ad-) + parere “to come forth, be visible,” from PIE root *per- “to bring forth” (see pare). Of persons, “present oneself,” late 14c. Meaning “seem, have a certain appearance” is late 14c. Related: Appeared; appearing.

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