See also: gët, get., -get, and ge- -t


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  • IPA(key): /ɡɛt/, /ɡɪt/, [ɡɛʔ]
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ɛt

Etymology 1

From Middle English geten, from Old Norse geta, from Proto-Germanic *getaną (compare Old English ġietan, Old High German pi-gezzan (to uphold), Gothic 𐌱𐌹𐌲𐌹𐍄𐌰𐌽 (bigitan, to find, discover)), from Proto-Indo-European *gʰed- (to seize). Cognate with Latin prehendo.


get (third-person singular simple present gets, present participle getting, simple past got or (archaic) gat, past participle (North American only for the senses "have" and "have to") got or (North American and regional UK) gotten)

  1. (ditransitive) To obtain; to acquire.
    I'm going to get a computer tomorrow from the discount store.
    Lance is going to get Mary a ring.
  2. (transitive) To receive.
    I got a computer from my parents for my birthday.
    You need to get permission to leave early.
    He got a severe reprimand for that.
    • 1913, Joseph C. Lincoln, chapter 8, in Mr. Pratt's Patients:
      Afore we got to the shanty Colonel Applegate stuck his head out of the door. His temper had been getting raggeder all the time, and the sousing he got when he fell overboard had just about ripped what was left of it to ravellings.
  3. (transitive, in a perfect construction, with present-tense meaning) To have. See usage notes.
    I've got a concert ticket for you.
  4. (copulative) To become.
    I'm getting hungry; how about you?
    Don't get drunk tonight.
    • (Can we date this quote?) Samuel Taylor Coleridge
      His chariot wheels get hot by driving fast.
    • 1913, Joseph C. Lincoln, chapter 8, in Mr. Pratt's Patients:
      Afore we got to the shanty Colonel Applegate stuck his head out of the door. His temper had been getting raggeder all the time, and the sousing he got when he fell overboard had just about ripped what was left of it to ravellings.
  5. (transitive) To cause to become; to bring about.
    That song gets me so depressed every time I hear it.
    I'll get this finished by lunchtime.
    I can't get these boots off (or on').
    • 1913, Joseph C. Lincoln, chapter 1, in Mr. Pratt's Patients:
      Then there came a reg'lar terror of a sou'wester same as you don't get one summer in a thousand, and blowed the shanty flat and ripped about half of the weir poles out of the sand. We spent consider'ble money getting 'em reset, and then a swordfish got into the pound and tore the nets all to slathers, right in the middle of the squiteague season.
  6. (transitive) To fetch, bring, take.
    Can you get my bag from the living-room, please?
    I need to get this to the office.
    • Bible, Genesis xxxi. 13
      Get thee out from this land.
    • (Can we date this quote?) Richard Knolles
      He [] got himself [] to the strong town of Mega.
  7. (transitive) To cause to do.
    Somehow she got him to agree to it.
    I can't get it to work.
    • (Can we date this quote?) William Shakespeare
      Get him to say his prayers.
    • 1927, F. E. Penny, chapter 5, in Pulling the Strings:
      Anstruther laughed good-naturedly. “[…] I shall take out half a dozen intelligent maistries from our Press and get them to give our villagers instruction when they begin work and when they are in the fields.”
  8. (intransitive, with various prepositions, such as into, over, or behind; for specific idiomatic senses see individual entries get into, get over, etc.) To adopt, assume, arrive at, or progress towards (a certain position, location, state).
    The actors are getting into position.
    When are we going to get to London?
    I'm getting into a muddle.
    We got behind the wall.
  9. (transitive) To cover (a certain distance) while travelling.
    to get a mile
  10. (transitive) To cause to come or go or move.
  11. (transitive) To cause to be in a certain status or position.
  12. (intransitive) To begin (doing something).
    We ought to get moving or we'll be late.
    After lunch we got chatting.
  13. (transitive) To take or catch (a scheduled transportation service).
    I normally get the 7:45 train.
    I'll get the 9 a.m. [flight] to Boston.
  14. (transitive) To respond to (a telephone call, a doorbell, etc).
    Can you get that call, please? I'm busy.
  15. (intransitive, followed by infinitive) To be able, permitted (to do something); to have the opportunity (to do something).
    I'm so jealous that you got to see them perform live!
    The finders get to keep 80 percent of the treasure.
  16. (transitive, informal) To understand. (compare get it)
    Yeah, I get it, it's just not funny.
    I don't get what you mean by "fun". This place sucks!
    I mentioned that I was feeling sad, so she mailed me a box of chocolates. She gets me.
  17. (transitive, informal) To be told; be the recipient of (a question, comparison, opinion, etc.).
    "You look just like Helen Mirren." / "I get that a lot."
    • 2011, They Might Be Giants (music), “You Probably Get That A Lot (Elegant Too Remix)”, in Album Raises New And Troubling Questions[1]:
      Do you mind? Excuse me / I saw you over there / Can I just tell you ¶ Although there are millions of / Cephalophores that wander through this world / You've got something extra going on / I think you probably know ¶ You probably get that a lot / I'll bet that people say that a lot to you, girl.
  18. (informal) To be. Used to form the passive of verbs.
    He got bitten by a dog.
    • 2003, Richard A. Posner, Law, Pragmatism, and Democracy, page 95:
      Of particular importance is the bureaucratic organization of European judiciaries. The judiciary is a career. You start at the bottom and get assigned and promoted at the pleasure of your superiors.
  19. (transitive) To become ill with or catch (a disease).
    I went on holiday and got malaria.
  20. (transitive, informal) To catch out, trick successfully.
    He keeps calling pretending to be my boss—it gets me every time.
  21. (transitive, informal) To perplex, stump.
    That question's really got me.
  22. (transitive) To find as an answer.
    What did you get for question four?
  23. (transitive, informal) To bring to reckoning; to catch (as a criminal); to effect retribution.
    The cops finally got me.
    I'm gonna get him for that.
  24. (transitive) To hear completely; catch.
    Sorry, I didn't get that. Could you repeat it?
  25. (transitive) To getter.
    I put the getter into the container to get the gases.
  26. (now rare) To beget (of a father).
    • 1603, William Shakespeare, Othello, Act I, Scene iii[2]:
      I had rather to adopt a child than get it.
    • 1610-11, William Shakespeare, The Tempest, Act I, Scene ii[3]:
      Thou poisonous slave, got by the devil himself / Upon thy wicked dam, come forth!
    • 2009, Hilary Mantel, Wolf Hall, Fourth Estate 2010, page 310:
      Walter had said, dear God, Thomas, it was St fucking Felicity if I'm not mistaken, and her face was to the wall for sure the night I got you.
  27. (archaic) To learn; to commit to memory; to memorize; sometimes with out.
    to get a lesson;  to get out one's Greek lesson
    • (Can we date this quote?) John Fell
      it being harder with him to get one sermon by heart, than to pen twenty
  28. (imperative, informal) Used with a personal pronoun to indicate that someone is being pretentious or grandiose.
    Get her with her new hairdo.
    • 2007, Tom Dyckhoff, Let's move to ..., The Guardian:
      Money's pouring in somewhere, because Churchgate's got lovely new stone setts, and a cultural quarter (ooh, get her) is promised.
  29. (informal, chiefly imperative) Go away; get lost.
    • 1991, Theodore Dreiser, T. D. Nostwich, Newspaper Days, University of Pennsylvania Press →ISBN, page 663
      Get, now — get! — before I call an officer and lay a charge against ye.&
    • Fredric Brown, Mack Reynolds, Me and Flapjack and the Martians
      I had a sneaking suspicion that it wasn't no flashlight and I wasn't too curious, just then, to find out what would happen if he did more than wave it at me, so I got. I went back about twenty feet or so and watched.
    • 2010, Sarah Webb, The Loving Kind, Pan Macmillan →ISBN
      'Go on, get. You look a state. We can't let Leo see you like that.'
    • 2012, Paul Zindel, Ladies at the Alamo, Graymalkin Media →ISBN
      Now go on, get! Get! Get! (she chases Joanne out the door with the hammer.)
  30. (euphemistic) To kill.
    They’re coming to get you, Barbara.
  31. (intransitive, obsolete) To make acquisitions; to gain; to profit.
Usage notes
  • The meaning "to have" is found only in perfect tenses but has present meaning; hence "I have got" has the same meaning as "I have". (Sometimes the form had got is used to mean "had", as in "He said they couldn't find the place because they'd got the wrong address".) In speech and in all except formal writing, the word "have" is normally reduced to /v/ and spelled "-'ve" or dropped entirely (e.g. "I got a God-fearing woman, one I can easily afford", Slow Train, Bob Dylan), leading to nonstandard usages such as "he gots" = "he has", "he doesn't got" = "he doesn't have".
  • Some dialects (e.g. American English) use both gotten and got as past participles, while others (e.g. British English) use only got. In dialects that use gotten, got is used for the meanings "to have" and "to have to", while gotten is used for all other meanings.[1] This allows for a distinction between "I've gotten a ticket" (I have received or obtained a ticket) vs. "I've got a ticket" (I currently have a ticket).
  • "get" is one of the most common verbs in English, and the many meanings may be confusing for language learners. The following table indicates some of the different constructions found, along with the most common meanings of each:
Construction Most common meanings
get + inanimate object to receive, to obtain, to take
have got + inanimate object to have
get + person to understand or to catch
get + concept to understand
get + adjective to become
get + person + adjective to cause to become
get + location adverb to arrive
get + to + location
get + to + verb to be able to
get + person + to + verb to cause to do
get + verb + -ing to begin doing
get + verb + -ed/-en to be (passive voice)
Derived terms
Terms derived from get
The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.


get (plural gets)

  1. (dated) Offspring.
    • 1976, Frank Herbert, Children of Dune
      You must admit that the bastard get of Paul Atreides would be no more than juicy morsels for those two [tigers].
    • 1999, George RR Martin, A Clash of Kings, Bantam 2011, page 755:
      ‘You were a high lord's get. Don't tell me Lord Eddard Stark of Winterfell never killed a man.’
  2. Lineage.
  3. (sports, tennis) A difficult return or block of a shot.
  4. Something gained.
    • 2008, Karen Yampolsky, Falling Out of Fashion (page 73)
      I had reconnected with the lust of my life while landing a big get for the magazine.

Etymology 2

Variant of git


get (plural gets)

  1. (Britain, regional) A git.

Alternative forms

  • gett (divorce document in Judaism)

Etymology 3

From Hebrew גֵּט(gēṭ).


get (plural gittim or gitten)

  1. (Judaism) A Jewish writ of divorce.


Other Languages
العربية: get
azərbaycanca: get
Bân-lâm-gú: get
brezhoneg: get
čeština: get
corsu: get
dansk: get
Deutsch: get
eesti: get
Ελληνικά: get
español: get
Esperanto: get
euskara: get
فارسی: get
français: get
galego: get
한국어: get
հայերեն: get
हिन्दी: get
hrvatski: get
Ido: get
Bahasa Indonesia: get
Interlingue: get
italiano: get
ಕನ್ನಡ: get
қазақша: get
kurdî: get
ລາວ: get
latviešu: get
lietuvių: get
Limburgs: get
magyar: get
Malagasy: get
മലയാളം: get
မြန်မာဘာသာ: get
Nederlands: get
日本語: get
norsk: get
oʻzbekcha/ўзбекча: get
ភាសាខ្មែរ: get
Plattdüütsch: get
polski: get
português: get
română: get
русский: get
Simple English: get
српски / srpski: get
suomi: get
svenska: get
Tagalog: get
தமிழ்: get
తెలుగు: get
ไทย: get
ᏣᎳᎩ: get
Türkçe: get
українська: get
اردو: get
Tiếng Việt: get
Volapük: get
中文: get