• (British) IPA: /kʌm/, [kʰɐm], enPR: kŭm
  • (America) IPA: /kʌm/, [kʰʌm], enPR: kŭm

come (comes, present participle coming; past came, past participle come)

  1. (intransitive) To move from further away to nearer to.
    She’ll be coming ’round the mountain when she comes […]
    • c. 1597, William Shakespeare, “The Merry VViues of VVindsor”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: Printed by Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358 ↗, [Act II, scene i]:
      Look, who comes yonder?
    • 1859, Alfred Tennyson, Guinevere
      I did not come to curse thee.
    1. To move towards the speaker.
      I called the dog, but she wouldn't come.
      Stop dawdling and come here!
    2. To move towards the listener.
      Hold on, I'll come in a second.
      You should ask the doctor to come to your house.
    3. To move towards the object that is the focus of the sentence.
      No-one can find Bertie Wooster when his aunts come to visit.
      Hundreds of thousands of people come to Disneyland every year.
    4. (in subordinate clauses and gerunds) To move towards the agent or subject of the main clause.
      King Cnut couldn't stop the tide coming.
      He threw the boomerang, which came right back to him.
    5. To move towards an unstated agent.
      The butler should come when called.
  2. (intransitive) To arrive.
    • 1667 Diary of Samuel Pepys (illustrating the present historic)
      Late at night comes Mr. Hudson, the cooper, my neighbour, and tells me that he come from Chatham this evening at five o'clock, and saw this afternoon "The Royal James," "Oake," and "London," burnt by the enemy with their fire-ships:
  3. (intransitive) To appear, to manifest itself.
    The pain in his leg comes and goes.
    • , Hudibras:
      when butter does refuse to come [i.e. to form]
  4. (with an infinitive) To begin to have an opinion or feeling.
    We came to believe that he was not so innocent after all.
    She came to think of that country as her home.
  5. (with an infinitive) To do something by chance, without intending to do it.
    Could you tell me how the document came to be discovered?
  6. (intransitive) To take a position relative to something else in a sequence.
    Which letter comes before Y?   Winter comes after autumn.
  7. (intransitive, vulgar, slang) To achieve orgasm; to cum; to ejaculate.
    • 2004, Alan Hollinghurst, The Line of Beauty, Bloomsbury, 2005, Chapter 2:
      Nick was more and more seriously absorbed, but then just before he came he had a brief vision of himself, as if the trees and bushes had rolled away and all the lights of London shone in on him: little Nick Guest from Barwick, Don and Dot Guest's boy, fucking a stranger in a Notting Hill garden at night.
    He came after a few minutes.
  8. (copulative, figuratively, with close) To approach a state of being or accomplishment.
    They came very close to leaving on time.   His test scores came close to perfect.
    One of the screws came loose, and the skateboard fell apart.
  9. (figuratively, with to) To take a particular approach or point of view in regard to something.
    He came to SF literature a confirmed technophile, and nothing made him happier than to read a manuscript thick with imaginary gizmos and whatzits.
  10. (copulative, fossil word) To become, to turn out to be.
    He was a dream come true.
    • c. 1595–1596, William Shakespeare, “Loues Labour’s Lost”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: Printed by Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358 ↗, [Act V, scene ii]:
      How come you thus estranged?
  11. (intransitive) To be supplied, or made available; to exist.
    He's as tough as they come.
    Our milkshakes come in vanilla, strawberry and chocolate flavours.
    A new sports car doesn't come cheap.
  12. (slang) To carry through; to succeed in.
    You can't come any tricks here.
  13. (intransitive) Happen.
    This kind of accident comes when you are careless.
  14. (intransitive, with from or sometimes of) To have as an origin, originate.
    1. To have a certain social background.
      • 2011, Kate Gramich, Kate Roberts, University of Wales Press, ISBN 9780708323380, chapter 3, gbooks vE2uBwAAQBAJ:
        While Kate Roberts came from a poor background and, later in life, in the post-Second World War period suffered from severe money shortages, in the early 1930s, she and her husband must have counted themselves relatively well off, particularly in comparison with their neighbours in Tonypandy.
    2. To be or have been a resident or native.
      Where did you come from?
    3. To have been brought up by or employed by.
      She comes from a good family.
      He comes from a disreputable legal firm.
    4. To begin (at a certain location); to radiate or stem (from).
      The river comes from Bear Lake.
      Where does this road come from?
  15. (intransitive, of grain) To germinate.
  16. (transitive, informal) To pretend to be; to behave in the manner of.
    Don't come the innocent victim. We all know who's to blame here.
Antonyms Related terms
  • c'mere
  • c'min
  • c'mon
Translations Translations Translations Translations Translations
  • French: devenir
  • Russian: станови́ться
  • French: s’avérer, se révéler
  • Russian: ока́зываться

come (uncountable)

  1. (obsolete) Coming, arrival; approach.
    • 1869, RD Blackmoore, Lorna Doone, II:
      “If we count three before the come of thee, thwacked thou art, and must go to the women.”
  2. (vulgar, slang) Semen
  3. (vulgar, slang) Female ejaculatory discharge.
  1. Used to indicate a point in time at or after which a stated event or situation occurs.
    Leave it to settle for about three months and, come Christmas time, you'll have a delicious concoction to offer your guests.
    Come retirement, their Social Security may turn out to be a lot less than they counted on.
    Come summer, we would all head off to the coast.
  1. An exclamation to express annoyance.
    Come come! Stop crying.  Come now! You must eat it.
  2. An exclamation to express encouragement, or to precede a request.
    Come come! You can do it.  Come now! It won't bite you.
    • 1908, W[illiam] B[lair] M[orton] Ferguson, chapter I, in Zollenstein, New York, N.Y.: D. Appleton & Company, OCLC 731476803 ↗:
      “I'm through with all pawn-games,” I laughed. “Come, let us have a game of lansquenet. Either I will take a farewell fall out of you or you will have your sevenfold revenge”.

come (plural comes)

  1. (typography, obsolete) Alternative form of comma in its medieval use as a middot ⟨·⟩ serving as a form of colon.

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