say1/seɪ/USA pronunciationv.,said/sɛd/USA pronunciation say•ing,adv., n., interj. v.
to utter or pronounce; speak:[~ + object]Don't say a word.
to express (something) in words; declare: [~ + (that) clause]I wrote and said (that) I wanted to see her again.[used with quotations]"I'll be there,'' he said.[~ + object]I've said my piece (= I've expressed my thoughts).
to state (something) as an opinion or judgment: [~ + (that) clause]I say (that) we should wait here.[no object]What should I do? I just can't say.
to recite or repeat:[~ + object]said his prayers and went to bed.
to express (a message, etc.), as through words, etc.:[~ + object]What does this painting say to you?
to indicate or show:[~ + object]What does your watch say? The clock says ten-thirty.
(used as a command, or as a polite command after let's) suppose; assume; imagine:[~ + (that) clause]Say (that) you saw her on the street; what would you do then? Let's say (that) I had gambled all our money away.
approximately; about:It's, say, 14 feet across.
for example:Suppose we asked a student, say, Janette here, for her opinion.
what a person says or wishes to say; one's turn to say something:She has already had her say.
the right or chance to state an opinion or exercise influence:to have one's say in a decision.
(used to express surprise or to get someone's attention):Say! That's great; you made it!
Idiomsgo without saying,[it/that + ~ (+ (that) clause)] to be self-evident:It goes without saying (that) you must write a thank-you note for a gift.
Idiomsthat is to say,[no object] in other words; meaning (that):The judge threw the book at him; that is to say, gave him the maximum sentence.
The verbs say and tell are sometimes confused. The verb say does not take a person as its direct object, only a word or clause:He said a few words and sat down.If a person is mentioned after say, the word to must be used before it:He said to her that he was ready.The verb tell may take a person as an object:He told her he was ready.