the action or practice of a person who reads.
Speech. the oral interpretation of written language.
the interpretation given in the performance of a dramatic part, musical composition, etc.: an interesting reading of Beethoven's 5th Symphony.
the extent to which a person has read; literary knowledge: a man of wide reading.
matter read or for reading: a novel that makes good reading.
the form or version of a given passage in a particular text: the various readings of a line in Shakespeare.
an instance or occasion in which a text or other matter is read or performed, usually without elaborate preparation and often as a means of testing its merits: The playwright wants to have a reading of the play for prospective producers.
an interpretation given to anything: What is your reading of the situation?
the indication of a graduated instrument: The reading is 101.2°F.
pertaining to or used for reading: reading glasses.
given to reading: the reading public.

before 900; Middle English redyng (gerund), Old English rǣdinge. See read, -ing1, -ing2

nonreading, noun
self-reading, adjective Unabridged


Rufus Daniel Isaacs, 1st Marquis of, 1860–1935, Lord Chief justice of England 1913–21; viceroy of India 1921–26.
a city in Berkshire, in S England.
a city in SE Pennsylvania.
a town in E Massachusetts, near Boston.
a city in SW Ohio.


1 [reed]
verb (used with object), read [red] , reading [ree-ding] .
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] , reading [ree-ding] .
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,
to read aloud, as for someone's attention.
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 ).

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. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To reading
World English Dictionary
read1 (riːd)
vb (when tr, often foll by out) , reads, reading, read
1.  to comprehend the meaning of (something written or printed) by looking at and interpreting the written or printed characters
2.  to be occupied in such an activity: he was reading all day
3.  to look at, interpret, and speak aloud (something written or printed): he read to us from the Bible
4.  (tr) to interpret the significance or meaning of through scrutiny and recognition: he read the sky and predicted rain; to read a map
5.  (tr) to interpret or understand the meaning of (signs, characters, etc) other than by visual means: to read Braille
6.  (tr) to have sufficient knowledge of (a language) to understand the written or printed word: do you read German?
7.  (tr) to discover or make out the true nature or mood of: to read someone's mind
8.  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
9.  (tr) to adopt as a reading in a particular passage: for ``boon'' read ``bone''
10.  (intr) to have or contain a certain form or wording: the sentence reads as follows
11.  to undertake a course of study in (a subject): to read history; read for the bar
12.  to gain knowledge by reading: he read about the war
13.  (tr) to register, indicate, or show: the meter reads 100
14.  (tr) to bring or put into a specified condition by reading: to read a child to sleep
15.  (tr) to hear and understand, esp when using a two-way radio: we are reading you loud and clear
16.  computing Compare write to obtain (data) from a storage device, such as magnetic tape
17.  (tr) 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
18.  informal read a lesson, read a lecture to censure or reprimand, esp in a long-winded manner
19.  read between the lines to perceive or deduce a meaning that is hidden or implied rather than being openly stated
20.  informal (Austral) you wouldn't read about it an expression of dismay, disgust, or disbelief
21.  matter suitable for reading: this new book is a very good read
22.  the act of reading
[Old English rǣdan to advise, explain; related to Old Frisian rēda, Old High German rātan, Gothic garēdan]

read2 (rɛd)
1.  the past tense and past participle of read
2.  having knowledge gained from books (esp in the phrases widely read, well-read)
3.  take something as read to take something for granted as a fact; understand or presume

reading (ˈriːdɪŋ)
1.  a.  the act of a person who reads
 b.  (as modifier): a reading room; a reading lamp
2.  a.  ability to read
 b.  (as modifier): the reading public; a child of reading age
3.  any matter that can be read; written or printed text
4.  a public recital or rendering of a literary work
5.  the form of a particular word or passage in a given text, esp where more than one version exists
6.  an interpretation, as of a piece of music, a situation, or something said or written
7.  knowledge gained from books: a person of little reading
8.  a measurement indicated by a gauge, dial, scientific instrument, etc
9.  parliamentary procedure
 a.  the formal recital of the body or title of a bill in a legislative assembly in order to begin one of the stages of its passage
 b.  first reading second reading See third reading one of the three stages in the passage of a bill through a legislative assembly
10.  the formal recital of something written, esp a will

Reading (ˈrɛdɪŋ)
1.  a town in S England, in Reading unitary authority, Berkshire, on the River Thames: university (1892). Pop: 232 662 (2001)
2.  a unitary authority in S England, in Berkshire. Pop: 144 100 (2003 est). Area: 37 sq km (14 sq miles)

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

O.E. rædan (W.Saxon), redan (Anglian) "to explain, read, rule, advise" (related to ræd, red "advice"), from P.Gmc. *raedanan (cf. O.N. raða, O.Fris. reda, Du. raden, O.H.G. ratan, Ger. raten "to advise, counsel, guess"), from PIE base *rei- "to reason, count" (cf. Skt. radh- "to succeed,
accomplish," Gk. arithmos "number amount," O.C.S. raditi "to take thought, attend to," O.Ir. im-radim "to deliberate, consider"). Connected to riddle via notion of "interpret." Words from this root in most modern Gmc. languages still mean "counsel, advise." Transference to "understand the meaning of written symbols" is unique to O.E. and (perhaps under Eng. influence) O.N. raða. Most languages use a word rooted in the idea of "gather up" as their word for "read" (cf. Fr. lire, from L. legere). Sense of "make out the character of (a person)" is attested from 1611. The noun meaning "an act of reading" is recorded from 1825. Read up "study" is from 1842; read-only in computer jargon is recorded from 1961. O.E. ræda "advise, counsel" is in the name of Anglo-Saxon king Æðelræd II (968-1016), lit. "good counsel," and in his epithet Unræd, usually rendered into Mod.Eng. as Unready, but really meaning "no-counsel." Rede "counsel" survived in poetic usage to 17c. An attempted revival by Scott (19c.) failed, though it is used in Tolkien's "Lord of the Rings."

county town of Berkshire, O.E. Readingum (c.900), "(Settlement of) the family or followers of a man called *Read."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
She would lean over your desk, or even squiggle onto part of your seat, and review your reading lesson with you.
It's cool in both senses of the word, understated yet exciting, and with a tension that keeps you reading.
Coffee-houses used to charge for coffee, but gave away access to reading
Reading stories can fine-tune your social skills by helping you better
  understand other human beings.
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