Dictionary > English Dictionary > Definition, synonym and antonym of ask
Meaning of ask by Wiktionary Dictionary



    • ( RP ) IPA: /ˈɑːsk/, X-SAMPA: /"A:sk/
    • ( GenAm ) IPA: /ˈæsk/, X-SAMPA: /"{sk/
    • ( US Regional Dialect ) enPR: ăks, IPA: /ˈæks/
    • Rhymes: -ɑːsk, -æsk
    • Homophone: ax, axe ( some dialects )

    Etymology 1

    From Middle English asken, from Old English āxian, āscian ( “to ask, inquire, seek for, demand, call, summon, examine, observe” ), from Proto-Germanic *aiskōnan ( “to ask, ask for” ), from Proto-Indo-European *ayǝs- ( “to look for” ). Cognate with West Frisian easkje ( “to require, postulate, demand” ), Dutch eisen ( “to demand, require” ), German heischen ( “to demand” ), Danish æske ( “to provoke” ), Swedish äska ( “to demand” ), Russian искать ( iskat', “to seek, look for” ) .


    ask ( third-person singular simple present asks present participle asking, simple past and past participle asked )

    1. To look for an answer to a question by speaking .
    2. To approach someone to do something .
    Usage notes
    Derived terms


    ask ( plural: asks )

    1. An act or instance of asking.
    2. Something asked or asked for; a request.

    Etymology 2

    From Middle English aske, arske, from Old English āþexe ( “lizard, newt” ), from Proto-Germanic *agiþahsijōn ( “lizard” ), from Proto-Germanic *agi- ( “snake” ) ( from Proto-Indo-European *ogʷh- ( “snake, lizard” ) ) + Proto-Germanic *þahsuz ( “badger” ) ( from Proto-Indo-European *teḱs- ( “to hew, trim” ) ). Cognate with Scots ask, awsk, esk ( “an eft or newt” ), Dutch hagedis ( “lizard” ), German Echse, Eidechse ( “lizard” ) .

    Alternative form

    • asker, ascar, askerd, askard


    ask ( plural: asks )

    1. ( UK dialectal and Scotland ) An eft; newt .
    2. ( UK dialectal ) A lizard .



Explanation of ask by Wordnet Dictionary


    1. make a request or demand for something to somebody

    2. She asked him for a loan
    3. consider obligatory

    4. Aren't we asking too much of these children?
    5. inquire about

    6. I asked about their special today
      He had to ask directions several times
    7. direct or put

    8. ask a question
    9. address a question to and expect an answer from

    10. Ask your teacher about trigonometry
      The children asked me about their dead grandmother
    11. require or ask for as a price or condition

    12. He is asking $200 for the table
      The kidnappers are asking a million dollars in return for the release of their hostage
    13. require as useful, just, or proper

    14. This job asks a lot of patience and skill

    Definition of ask by GCIDE Dictionary


    1. Ask v. t. [imp. & p. p. Asked ( ); p. pr. & vb. n. Asking.] [OE. asken, ashen, axien, AS. āscian, ācsian; akin to OS. ēscōn, OHG. eiscōn, Sw. āska, Dan. æske, D. eischen, G. heischen, Lith. jëskóti, OSlav. iskati to seek, Skr. ish to desire. √5.]
      1. To request; to seek to obtain by words; to petition; to solicit; -- often with of, in the sense of from, before the person addressed.

      Ask counsel, we pray thee, of God. Judg. xviii. 5.

      If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. John xv. 7.

      2. To require, demand, claim, or expect, whether by way of remuneration or return, or as a matter of necessity; as, what price do you ask?

      Ask me never so much dowry. Gen. xxxiv. 12.

      To whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more. Luke xii. 48.

      An exigence of state asks a much longer time to conduct a design to maturity. Addison.

      3. To interrogate or inquire of or concerning; to put a question to or about; to question.

      He is of age; ask him: he shall speak for himself. John ix. 21.

      He asked the way to Chester. Shak.

      4. To invite; as, “to ask one to an entertainment”.

      5. To publish in church for marriage; -- said of both the banns and the persons. Fuller.

      Syn. -- To beg; request; seek; petition; solicit; entreat; beseech; implore; crave; require; demand; claim; exhibit; inquire; interrogate. See Beg.

    2. Ask, v. i.
      1. To request or petition; -- usually followed by for; as, “to ask for bread”.

      Ask, and it shall be given you. Matt. vii. 7.

      2. To make inquiry, or seek by request; -- sometimes followed by after.

      Wherefore . . . dost ask after my name? Gen. xxxii. 29.

    3. Ask n. [See 2d Asker.] ( Zool. ) A water newt. [Scot. & North of Eng.]