1 [thawt]
the product of mental activity; that which one thinks: a body of thought.
a single act or product of thinking; idea or notion: to collect one's thoughts.
the act or process of thinking; mental activity: Thought as well as action wearies us.
the capacity or faculty of thinking, reasoning, imagining, etc.: All her thought went into her work.
a consideration or reflection: Thought of death terrified her.
meditation, contemplation, or recollection: deep in thought.
intention, design, or purpose, especially a half-formed or imperfect intention: We had some thought of going.
anticipation or expectation: I had no thought of seeing you here.
consideration, attention, care, or regard: She took no thought of her appearance.
a judgment, opinion, or belief: According to his thought, all violence is evil.
the intellectual activity or the ideas, opinions, etc., characteristic of a particular place, class, or time: Greek thought.
a very small amount; a touch; bit; trifle: The steak is a thought underdone.

before 900; Middle English thoght, Old English (ge)thōht; cognate with Dutch gedachte; akin to thank, think1

2. See idea. 3. reflection, cogitation. Unabridged


2 [thawt]
simple past tense and past participle of think.


1 [thingk]
verb (used without object), thought, thinking.
to have a conscious mind, to some extent of reasoning, remembering experiences, making rational decisions, etc.
to employ one's mind rationally and objectively in evaluating or dealing with a given situation: Think carefully before you begin.
to have a certain thing as the subject of one's thoughts: I was thinking about you. We could think of nothing else.
to call something to one's conscious mind: I couldn't think of his phone number.
to consider something as a possible action, choice, etc.: She thought about cutting her hair.
to invent or conceive of something: We thought of a new plan.
to have consideration or regard for someone: Think of others first.
to esteem a person or thing as indicated: to think badly of someone.
to have a belief or opinion as indicated: I think so.
(of a device or machine, especially a computer) to use artificial intelligence to perform an activity analogous to human thought.
verb (used with object), thought, thinking.
to have or form in the mind as an idea, conception, etc.
to have or form in the mind in order to understand, know, or remember something else: Romantic comedy is all about chemistry: think Tracy and Hepburn. Can't guess? Here's a hint: think 19th century.
to consider for evaluation or for possible action upon: Think the deal over.
to regard as specified: He thought me unkind.
to believe to be true of someone or something: to think evil of the neighbors.
to analyze or evolve rationally: to think the problem out.
to have as a plan or intention: I thought that I would go.
to anticipate or expect: I did not think to find you here.
of or pertaining to thinking or thought.
Informal. stimulating or challenging to the intellect or mind: the think book of the year. Compare think piece.
Informal. the act or a period of thinking: I want to sit down and give it a good think.
Verb phrases
think of,
to conceive of; imagine.
to have an opinion or judgment of.
to consider; anticipate: When one thinks of what the future may bring, one is both worried and hopeful.
think out/through,
to think about until a conclusion is reached; understand or solve by thinking.
to devise by thinking; contrive: He thought out a plan for saving time.
think up, to devise or contrive by thinking: Can you think up an arrangement of furniture for this room?
think better of, to change one's mind about; reconsider: She considered emigrating to Australia, but thought better of it.
think fit, to consider advisable or appropriate: By all means, take a vacation if you think fit.
think nothing of. nothing ( def 19 ).
think twice, to weigh carefully before acting; consider: I would think twice before taking on such a responsibility.

before 900; Middle English thinken, variant of thenken, Old English thencan; cognate with Dutch, German denken, Old Norse thekkja, Gothic thagkjan; akin to thank


2 [thingk]
verb (used without object), thought, thinking. Obsolete.
to seem or appear (usually used impersonally with a dative as the subject).
Compare methinks.

before 900; Middle English thinken, Old English thyncan; cognate with Dutch dunken, German dünken, Old Norse thykkja, Gothic thugkjan Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
think (θɪŋk)
vb (often foll by about) (foll by of) (foll by of) , thinks, thinking, thought
1.  (tr; may take a clause as object) to consider, judge, or believe: he thinks my ideas impractical
2.  to exercise the mind as in order to make a decision; ponder
3.  (intr) to be capable of conscious thought: man is the only animal that thinks
4.  to remember; recollect: I can't think what his name is
5.  to make the mental choice (of): think of a number
6.  (may take a clause as object or an infinitive)
 a.  to expect; suppose: I didn't think to see you here
 b.  to be considerate or aware enough (to do something): he did not think to thank them
7.  to consider; regard: she thinks of herself as a poet
8.  (intr) to focus the attention on being: think thin; think big
9.  (tr) to bring into or out of a specified condition by thinking: to think away one's fears
10.  slang I don't think a phrase added to an ironical statement: you're the paragon of virtue, I don't think
11.  think again to reconsider one's decision, opinion, etc
12.  think better of
 a.  to change one's mind about (a course of action, decision, etc)
 b.  to have a more favourable opinion of (a person)
13.  (usually negative) think much of to have a high opinion of
14.  think nothing of
 a.  to regard as routine, easy, or natural
 b.  to have no compunction or hesitation about
 c.  to have a very low opinion of
15.  think twice to consider carefully before deciding (about something)
16.  informal a careful, open-minded assessment: let's have a fresh think about this problem
17.  informal (modifier) characterized by or involving thinkers, thinking, or thought: a think session
18.  slang you've got another think coming you are mistaken and will soon have to alter your opinion
[Old English thencan; related to Old Frisian thenza, Old Saxon thenkian, Old High German denken, Old Norse thekkja, Gothic thagkjan]

thought (θɔːt)
1.  the past tense and past participle of think
2.  the act or process of thinking; deliberation, meditation, or reflection
3.  a concept, opinion, or idea
4.  philosophical or intellectual ideas typical of a particular time or place: German thought in the 19th century
5.  application of mental attention; consideration: he gave the matter some thought
6.  purpose or intention: I have no thought of giving up
7.  expectation: no thought of reward
8.  a small amount; trifle: you could be a thought more enthusiastic
9.  kindness or regard: he has no thought for his widowed mother
[Old English thōht; related to Old Frisian thochta, Old Saxon, Old High German githācht]

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. þencan "conceive in the mind, think, consider, intend" (past tense þohte, p.p. geþoht), probably originally "cause to appear to oneself," from P.Gmc. *thankjan (cf. O.Fris. thinka, O.S. thenkian, O.H.G. denchen, Ger. denken, O.N. þekkja, Goth. þagkjan); O.E. þencan
is the causative form of the distinct O.E. verb þyncan "to seem or appear" (past tense þuhte, pp. geþuht), from P.Gmc. *thunkjan (cf. Ger. dünken, däuchte). Both are from PIE *tong- "to think, feel" which also is the root of thought and thank. The two meanings converged in M.E. and þyncan "to seem" was absorbed, except for archaic methinks "it seems to me." Jocular pp. thunk (not historical, but by analogy of drink, sink, etc.) is recorded from 1876. Think-tank is 1959 as "research institute" (first ref. is to Center for Behavioral Sciences, Palo Alto, Calif.); it had been colloquial for "the brain" since 1905.

O.E. þoht, geþoht, from stem of þencan "to conceive of in the mind, consider" (see think). Cognate with the second element in Ger. Gedächtnis "memory," Andacht "attention, devotion," Bedacht "consideration, deliberation." Second thought "later consideration"
is recorded from 1640s. Thought-crime is from "Nineteen Eighty-Four" (1949); thought police is attested from 1946, originally in ref. to pre-war Japanese Special Higher Police (Tokubetsu Koto Keisatsu).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

think (thĭngk)
v. thought (thôt), think·ing, thinks

  1. To exercise the power of reason, as by conceiving ideas, drawing inferences, and using judgment.

  2. To weigh or consider an idea.

  3. To bring a thought to mind by imagination or invention.

  4. To recall a thought or an image to mind.

thought (thôt)

  1. The act or the process of thinking; cogitation.

  2. A product of thinking, such as an idea.

  3. The faculty of thinking or reasoning.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases


see food for thought; lost in thought; on second thought; penny for your thoughts; perish the thought; train of thought. Also see under think.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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Example sentences
The idea that language influences thought is a profound, exciting and possibly disturbing one.
The thought of making anything as fragile-looking as a tall soufflé can terrify cooks.
He remained at the table while everyone stood, dishes were washed, and the thought of cold roast-beef sandwiches faded.
The essence of memory is linking one thought to another.
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