Hone in vs. home in? What's the difference?


[reed] /rid/
verb (used with object), read
[red] /rɛd/ (Show IPA),
[ree-ding] /ˈri dɪŋ/ (Show IPA)
to look at carefully so as to understand the meaning of (something written, printed, etc.):
to read a book; to read music.
to utter aloud or render in speech (something written, printed, etc.):
reading a story to his children; The actor read his lines in a booming voice.
to have such knowledge of (a language) as to be able to understand things written in it:
to be able to read French.
to apprehend the meaning of (signs, characters, etc.) otherwise than with the eyes, as by means of the fingers:
to read Braille.
to apprehend or interpret the meaning of (gestures, movements, signals, or the like):
to read a semaphore; to read sign language.
to make out the significance of by scrutiny or observation:
to read the cloudy sky as the threat of a storm; a fisherman skilled in reading a stream for potential pools.
to anticipate, expect, or calculate by observation:
At the line of scrimmage, the quarterback read a blitz and called an audible.
to foresee, foretell, or predict:
to read a person's fortune in tea leaves.
to make out the character, motivations, desires, etc., of (a person or persons), as by the interpretation of outward signs.
to interpret or attribute a meaning to (a written text), a musical composition, etc.):
How do you read this clause in the contract?
to infer (something not expressed or directly indicated) from what is read, considered, or observed:
He read an underlying sarcasm into her letter. In your silence I read agreement to my plan.
to adopt or give as a reading in a particular passage: For “one thousand” another version reads “ten thousand.”.
to substitute or replace (a particular word or phrase) in a written text, usually to correct an error: Read “cavalry” for “calvary.”.
to check (printers' proofs, copy, etc.) for errors; proofread.
to register or indicate, as a thermometer, clock, etc.
Computers. to obtain (data, programs, or control information) from an external storage medium or some other source and place in memory.
British. to study (a subject), as at a university:
to read law.
to read the work of (an author):
She is reading Kafka.
to learn by or as if by reading:
to read a person's thoughts.
to hear and understand (a transmitted radio message or the person transmitting it); receive:
I read you loud and clear.
to bring, put, etc., by reading:
to read oneself to sleep.
to give one (a lecture or lesson) by way of admonition or rebuke.
to discover or explain the meaning of (a riddle, dream, etc.).
verb (used without object), read
[red] /rɛd/ (Show IPA),
[ree-ding] /ˈri dɪŋ/ (Show IPA)
to read or peruse written or printed matter.
to utter aloud or render in speech written or printed words that one is perusing:
to read to a person.
to give a public reading or recital.
to inspect and apprehend the meaning of written or other signs or characters.
to occupy oneself seriously with reading or study.
to obtain knowledge or learn of something by reading.
to admit of being read, especially properly or well.
to have a certain wording.
to admit of being interpreted:
a rule that reads in two different ways.
to register or indicate particular information, as the status or condition of something:
Her blood pressure is reading a little low today.
to have an effect or make an impression; show forth:
Those battle photographs read with great impact.
Computers. to read data, programs, or control information.
an act or instance of reading:
Give the agreement a careful read before you sign it.
something that is read:
Her new novel is a wonderful read.
Verb phrases
read in, Computers. to place (data, programs, or control information) in memory.
read out,
  1. to read aloud, as for someone's attention.
  2. Computers. to retrieve (information) from a computer.
read out of, to oust from membership in (a political party or other group) by a public announcement of dismissal:
He was read out of the association because of alleged subversive activities.
read up on, to learn about by reading; gather information on; research by reading:
You'd better read up on World War I before taking the history test.
read between the lines. line1 (def 82).
read for, (of an actor) to audition for (a role, a play, etc.).
read lips, to study the lip movements of a speaker who cannot be heard so as to determine the words being uttered.
read the green, Golf. green (def 33).
read the riot act. Riot Act (def 2).
Origin of read1
before 900; Middle English reden, Old English rǣdan to counsel, read; cognate with Dutch raden, German raten, Old Norse rātha; akin to Sanskrit rādhnoti (he) achieves
1. peruse, scan, note, study. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for read upon
Historical Examples
  • She stood awhile, as if lost in thought, and when I looked back I thought I could read upon her face trouble and fear.

    Hurricane Island H. B. Marriott Watson
  • And were he only—but I will not make you glow, as you read—upon my word I will not.

    Clarissa, Volume 1 (of 9) Samuel Richardson
  • I mentioned, it is true, with fear and trembling, the only authors I had ever read upon those subjects.

    Frankenstein Mary Shelley
  • The other, as I could read upon her wheel-house, was the “Magnolia.”

    The Quadroon Mayne Reid
  • The future of Egypt may be read upon the walls of her ancient temples and tombs.

    The Treasury of Ancient Egypt Arthur E. P. B. Weigall
  • Each of these varied qualities might have been read upon his face.

    Sir Nigel Arthur Conan Doyle
  • He could read upon their dark scowling faces that something moved them exceedingly; but what it was he could not gather.

    The Rocky Island Samuel Wilberforce
  • Mr. B. had an extract from a second letter to read upon this subject.

  • Emily attracted by its simply beauty, and drawing near, she stooped down and read upon the marble slab, "Dear Mina."

    The Pearl Box "A Pastor"
  • And you read upon this marble the list of his dramatic works.

British Dictionary definitions for read upon


verb reads, reading, read (rɛd)
to comprehend the meaning of (something written or printed) by looking at and interpreting the written or printed characters
to be occupied in such an activity: he was reading all day
when tr, often foll by out. to look at, interpret, and speak aloud (something written or printed): he read to us from the Bible
(transitive) to interpret the significance or meaning of through scrutiny and recognition: he read the sky and predicted rain, to read a map
(transitive) to interpret or understand the meaning of (signs, characters, etc) other than by visual means: to read Braille
(transitive) to have sufficient knowledge of (a language) to understand the written or printed word: do you read German?
(transitive) to discover or make out the true nature or mood of: to read someone's mind
to interpret or understand (something read) in a specified way, or (of something read) to convey a particular meaning or impression: I read this speech as satire, this book reads well
(transitive) to adopt as a reading in a particular passage: for ``boon'' read ``bone''
(intransitive) to have or contain a certain form or wording: the sentence reads as follows
to undertake a course of study in (a subject): to read history, read for the bar
to gain knowledge by reading: he read about the war
(transitive) to register, indicate, or show: the meter reads 100
(transitive) to bring or put into a specified condition by reading: to read a child to sleep
(transitive) to hear and understand, esp when using a two-way radio: we are reading you loud and clear
(computing) to obtain (data) from a storage device, such as magnetic tape Compare write (sense 16)
(transitive) to understand (written or printed music) by interpretation of the notes on the staff and to be able to reproduce the musical sounds represented by these notes
(informal) read a lesson, read a lecture, to censure or reprimand, esp in a long-winded manner
read between the lines, to perceive or deduce a meaning that is hidden or implied rather than being openly stated
(Austral, informal) you wouldn't read about it, an expression of dismay, disgust, or disbelief
matter suitable for reading: this new book is a very good read
the act of reading
Word Origin
Old English rǣdan to advise, explain; related to Old Frisian rēda, Old High German rātan, Gothic garēdan


the past tense and past participle of read1
having knowledge gained from books (esp in the phrases widely read, well-read)
take something as read, to take something for granted as a fact; understand or presume
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for read upon



Old English rædan (West Saxon), redan (Anglian) "to advise, counsel, persuade; discuss, deliberate; rule, guide; arrange, equip; forebode; read, explain; learn by reading; put in order" (related to ræd, red "advice"), from Proto-Germanic *raedanan (cf. Old Norse raða, Old Frisian reda, Dutch raden, Old High German ratan, German raten "to advise, counsel, guess"), from PIE root *re(i)- "to reason, count" (cf. Sanskrit radh- "to succeed, accomplish," Greek arithmos "number amount," Old Church Slavonic raditi "to take thought, attend to," Old Irish im-radim "to deliberate, consider"). Words from this root in most modern Germanic languages still mean "counsel, advise."

Sense of "make out the character of (a person)" is attested from 1610s. Connected to riddle via notion of "interpret." Transference to "understand the meaning of written symbols" is unique to Old English and (perhaps under English influence) Old Norse raða. Most languages use a word rooted in the idea of "gather up" as their word for "read" (cf. French lire, from Latin legere). Read up "study" is from 1842; read out (v.) "expel by proclamation" (Society of Friends) is from 1788. read-only in computer jargon is recorded from 1961.


"an act of reading," 1825, from read (v.).


1580s, "having knowledge gained from reading," in well-read, etc., past participle adjective from read (v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for read upon



  1. A book or other printed matter: Ultimately, it's Maas' reporter's eye for detail that makes ''China White'' a great read (1958+)
  2. Understanding; interpretation; take: What's your read on this? (1990s+)


  1. To inspect clothing for lice (WWI Army)
  2. To receive and interpret a radio signal; understand: He's breaking up and I can't read him (1940s+ Radio operators)
  3. To understand; dig: I read you, baby, and I flatly agree (1956+)
The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Idioms and Phrases with read upon
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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