Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.


Since He has borne the punishment for me, I, believing on Him, need no longer be punished.

Against all evidence she was holding this man honest, believing her brother the thief.

For the most part I succeeded in believing it, but it is just to add that the neighborhood did not.

If Marion had come of a believing family, she could have brought me back into the fold.

Believing themselves to be alone with the sunset, there was no reason to lower their voices.

Had she any tangible ground for believing that Calendar could be found in Queensborough?

Lady St. Craye had the best of reasons for believing this likely to be the truth.

But, believing as he did in his own strength of resistance, pride filled him with disdain.

His brother only knew him as a believing priest, faithful to his faith.

"Let me stop and tell my sister, and I'll go with you," I said, believing that he had consented.


Old English belyfan "to believe," earlier geleafa (Mercian), gelefa (Northumbrian), gelyfan (West Saxon) "believe," from Proto-Germanic *ga-laubjan "to believe," perhaps literally "hold dear, love" (cf. Old Saxon gilobian "believe," Dutch geloven, Old High German gilouben, German glauben), ultimately a compound based on PIE *leubh- "to care, desire, love" (see belief).

Spelling beleeve is common till 17c.; then altered, perhaps by influence of relieve, etc. To believe on instead of in was more common in 16c. but now is a peculiarity of theology; believe of also sometimes was used in 17c. Related: Believed (formerly occasionally beleft); believing. Expression believe it or not attested by 1874; Robert Ripley's newspaper cartoon of the same name is from 1918. Emphatic you better believe attested from 1854.


Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.