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See also: také



From Middle English taken (to take, lay hold of, grasp, strike), from Old English tacan (to grasp, touch), probably of North Germanic origin, from Old Norse taka (to touch, take), from Proto-Germanic *tēkaną (to touch), from Proto-Indo-European *deh₁g-, *dh₁g- (to touch). Gradually displaced Middle English nimen (to take), from Old English niman (to take). Cognate with Icelandic taka (to take), Danish tage (to take, seize), Middle Dutch taken (to grasp), Dutch taken (to take; to grasp), Middle Low German tacken (to grasp). See tackle.



take (third-person singular simple present takes, present participle taking, simple past took, past participle taken)

  1. (heading, transitive) To get or put something into one's or someone's possession or control.
    1. To grasp with the hands.
    2. To pick up and move to oneself.
      I’ll take that plate off the table.
      • 1963, Margery Allingham, chapter 19, The China Governess[1]:
        Meanwhile Nanny Broome was recovering from her initial panic and seemed anxious to make up for any kudos she might have lost, by exerting her personality to the utmost. She took the policeman's helmet and placed it on a chair, and unfolded his tunic to shake it and fold it up again for him.
    3. To carry or move, especially to a particular destination.
      I'll take the plate with me.
      • 1898, Winston Churchill, chapter 2, The Celebrity:
        Here was my chance. I took the old man aside, and two or three glasses of Old Crow launched him into reminiscence.
    4. To lead; to conduct.
      Who's going to take the kids to school?;  I took my girlfriend to the cinema.
    5. To choose.
      I'll take the blue plates.  We took the road on the right.
      • Bible, 1 Samuel xiv 42
        Saul said, Cast lots between me and Jonathan my son. And Jonathan was taken.
    6. To accept.
      Do you take sugar in your coffee?  We take all major credit cards.
      • 2013 August 10, Schumpeter, “Cronies and capitols”, The Economist, volume 408, number 8848: 
        Policing the relationship between government and business in a free society is difficult. Businesspeople have every right to lobby governments, and civil servants to take jobs in the private sector.
    7. To receive (a newspaper, magazine, etc.) regularly, as by paying the subscription.
      I used to take The Sunday Times.
    8. (military) To gain a position by force.
      After a bloody battle, they were able to take the city.
    9. To ingest medicine, drugs, etc.
      I take aspirin every day to thin my blood.
      • 1893, Walter Besant, The Ivory Gate, chapterIII:
        To such men as Mr. Hellyer, who every night take much strong drink, and on no occasion whatever take any exercise, sixty is the grand climacteric. He was, a year ago, just fifty-nine. Alas! he has not even reached his grand climacteric. Already he is gone. He was cut off by pneumonia, or apoplexy, last Christmas.
    10. To capture using a photographic camera.
      The photographer took a picture of our family.
    11. (transitive, dated) To make a picture, photograph, etc. of.
      to take a group or a scene
    12. To observe; to gather information on.
      The doctor took the patient's pulse, blood pressure, and temperature.
    13. (dated) To form a likeness of; to copy; to depict.
      to take (i.e. draw or paint) a picture of a person
      • John Dryden (1631-1700)
        Beauty alone could beauty take so right.
    14. (obsolete) To deliver, give (something); to entrust.
      • 1485, Thomas Malory, Le Morte Darthur, Book XIII, chapter xj:
        for thy loue I haue lefte my countrey / And sythe ye shalle departe oute of this world / leue me somme token of yours that I may thynke on you / Ioseph said that wille I doo ful gladly / Now brynge me your sheld that I toke yow whanne ye went in to bataille ageynst kyng Tolleme
      • 1526, William Tyndale, trans. Bible, Matthew XXIII:
        Jesus perceaved there wylynes, and sayde: Why tempte ye me ye ypocrytes? lett me se the tribute money. And they toke hym a peny.
  2. (heading) To have or change a state of mind or body.
    1. (transitive) To endure or cope with.
      I can take the noise, but I can't take the smell.
    2. (transitive, often with “for”) To assume or interpret to be.
      Do you take me for a fool?  I take it you're not going?  Looking at him as he came into the room, I took him for his father.He was often taken to be a man of means.
      • 1918, W. B. Maxwell, chapter 22, The Mirror and the Lamp:
        Not unnaturally, “Auntie” took this communication in bad part. Thus outraged, she showed herself to be a bold as well as a furious virago.
    3. (intransitive) To become.
      They took ill within 3 hours.  She took sick with the flu.
    4. (transitive) To enroll (in a class, or a course of study).
      I plan to take math, physics, literature and flower arrangement this semester.
    5. (transitive) To participate in, undergo, or experience.
      Aren't you supposed to take your math final today?  When will you take your vacation?I had to take a pee.
    6. (intransitive) To habituate to or gain competency at a task.
      I take to swimming like a fish.
    7. (transitive) To perform or undertake, for example, a task.
      to take a trip;  to take aim
      • 1893, Walter Besant, The Ivory Gate, chapterIII:
        To such men as Mr. Hellyer, who every night take much strong drink, and on no occasion whatever take any exercise, sixty is the grand climacteric. He was, a year ago, just fifty-nine. Alas! he has not even reached his grand climacteric. Already he is gone. He was cut off by pneumonia, or apoplexy, last Christmas.
      • 1898, Winston Churchill, chapter 4, The Celebrity:
        No matter how early I came down, I would find him on the veranda, smoking cigarettes, or []. And at last I began to realize in my harassed soul that all elusion was futile, and to take such holidays as I could get, when he was off with a girl, in a spirit of thankfulness.
    8. (transitive) To experience or feel, for example, offence.
      to take a dislike;  to take pleasure
      • 1913, Joseph C. Lincoln, chapter 1, Mr. Pratt's Patients:
        Thinks I to myself, “Sol, you're run off your course again. This is a rich man's summer ‘cottage’ and if you don't look out there's likely to be some nice, lively dog taking an interest in your underpinning.”
      • 1963, Margery Allingham, chapter 20, The China Governess[2]:
        The story struck the depressingly familiar note with which true stories ring in the tried ears of experienced policemen. [] The second note, the high alarum, not so familiar and always important since it indicates the paramount sin in Man's private calendar, took most of them by surprise although they had been well prepared.
    9. (reflexive) To go.
      • 2007, Edwin Mullins, The Popes of Avignon, Blue Bridge, 2008, p.59:
        Nicholas then took himself to Avignon where in August 1330 he formally renounced his claim to the papacy.
  3. (heading) To require or limit.
    1. (transitive) To support or carry without failing or breaking.
      That truck bed will only take two tons.
    2. (transitive) To need, require.
      Looks like it's gonna take a taller person to get that down.  Finishing this on schedule will take a lot of overtime.
      • 2013 August 31, “Code blue”, The Economist, volume 408, number 8851: 
        Time was it took a war to close a financial exchange. Now all it needs is a glitch in technology. On August 26th trading on Eurex, the main German derivatives exchange, opened as usual; 20 minutes later it shut down for about an hour. Four days earlier the shares of every company listed on NASDAQ, an American stock exchange, ceased trading for three hours.
    3. (transitive) To last or expend [an amount of time].
      I estimate the trip will take about ten minutes.
  4. (heading, transitive, sports) To decide or to act.
    1. (baseball) To not swing at a pitch.
      He’ll probably take this one.
    2. (climbing) To tighten (take up) a belaying rope. Often used imperatively.
    3. (cricket) To catch the ball; especially for the wicket-keeper to catch the ball after the batsman has missed or edged it.
    4. To be the player who performs (a free kick, etc.).
      The kick is taken from where the foul occurred.  Pirès ran in to take the kick.The throw-in is taken from the point where the ball crossed the touch-line.
    5. Not to refuse or balk at; to undertake readily; to clear.
      The pony took every hedge and fence in its path.
  5. (transitive) To have sex with.
    The rapist took his victims in dark alleys.
  6. (transitive) To fight or attempt to fight somebody. (See also take on.)
    Don't try to take that guy. He's bigger than you.
  7. (transitive, dialect or slang) To give or deliver (a blow, to someone); to strike or hit.
    He took me a blow on the head.
  8. (intransitive) To stick, persist, thrive or remain.
    I started some tomato seeds last spring, but they didn't take.  He was inoculated, but the virus did not take.
    • Francis Bacon (1561-1626)
      When flame taketh and openeth, it giveth a noise.
  9. (transitive) To use.
    Let's take the bus today.  This camera takes 35mm film.
  10. (heading) To decide, react, or interact.
    1. (heading, obsolete) To please; to gain reception; to succeed.
      • Joseph Addison (1672-1719)
        Each wit may praise it for his own dear sake, / And hint he writ it, if the thing should take.
    2. (transitive) To consider as an instance or example.
      I've had a lot of problems recently. Take last Monday. The car broke down on the way to work. Then ... etc.
    3. To gain or secure the interest or affection of; to captivate; to engage; to interest; to charm.
      • Bible, Proverbs vi.25:
        Neither let her take thee with her eyelids.
      • William Wake (1657-1737)
        Cleombroutus was so taken with this prospect, that he had no patience.
      • Thomas Moore (1779-1852)
        I know not why, but there was a something in those half-seen features, — a charm in the very shadow that hung over their imagined beauty, — which took me more than all the outshining loveliness of her companions.
    4. To bear without ill humour or resentment; to submit to; to tolerate; to endure.
      Can he take a joke?;  I'm not going to take your insults.
    5. To accept the word or offer of; to receive and accept.
    6. To draw; to deduce; to derive.
      I'm not sure what moral to take from that story.
      • John Tillotson (1630-1694)
        The firm belief of a future judgment is the most forcible motive to a good life, because taken from this consideration of the most lasting happiness and misery.
    7. To accept, as something offered; to receive; not to refuse or reject; to admit.
      • Bible, Numbers xxxv.31:
        Ye shall take no satisfaction for the life of a murderer.
      • Bible, 1 Timothy v.10:
        Let not a widow be taken into the number under threescore.
    8. (often with to mean) To understand or interpret.

Usage notes[edit]

In informal speech, especially in certain sociolects, took is sometimes replaced by the proscribed form taked.


  • 1611King James Version of the Bible, Luke 1:1
    Forasmuch as many have taken in hand to set forth in order a declaration of those things which are most surely believed among us []



Derived terms[edit]

See also taken and taking



take (plural takes)

  1. An act of taking.
  2. Something that is taken; a haul.
  3. A profit, reward, bribe, illegal payoff or unethical kickback.
    He wants half of the take if he helps with the job.
    The mayor is on the take.
  4. An interpretation or view; perspective.
    What’s your take on this issue, Fred?
  5. (film) An attempt to record a scene.
    It’s a take.
    Act seven, scene three, take two.
  6. (rugby) A catch.
  7. (acting) A facial gesture in response to an event.
    I did a take when I saw the new car in the driveway.
  8. (cricket) A catch of the ball, especially by the wicket-keeper.
  9. (printing) The quantity or copy given to a compositor at one time.

Derived terms[edit]


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 Help:How to check translations.

See also[edit]

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  1. rōmaji reading of たけ

Norwegian Nynorsk[edit]


take (present tense tek, past tense tok, past participle teke, passive infinitive takast, present participle takande, imperative tak)

  1. Alternative form of taka




  1. want
    se-takeI want


  • 2001, Alejandra Vidal, quoted in Subordination in Native South-American Languages