W1S1 [si:m] v [linking verb, not in progressive]
[Date: 1100-1200; : Old Norse; Origin: sœma 'to be appropriate to', from sœmr 'appropriate']
1.) to appear to exist or be true, or to have a particular quality
Ann didn't seem very sure.
It seems a foolish decision now.
seem to do sth
The rainbow seemed to end on the hillside.
seem important/right/strange etc to sb
Doesn't that seem weird to you?
it seems to sb (that)
It seems to me you don't have much choice.
it seems (that)
It seemed that Freeman had killed the man, and dumped the body in the lake.
it seems likely/unlikely/reasonable/clear (that)
It seems likely that he will miss Ireland's next match.
seem like
Teri seemed like a nice girl.
Well, it seemed like a good idea at the time.
We waited for what seemed like hours .
seem as if/as though/like
It seemed as if the end of the world had come.
It seems like you're catching a cold, Taylor.
'So Bill's leaving her?' ' So it seems (=it appears to be true) .'
2.) can't/couldn't seem to do sth
used to say that you have tried to do something but cannot do it
I just can't seem to relax.
3.) used to make what you are saying less strong or certain, and more polite
seem to do sth
I seem to have lost my car keys.
it seems (that)/it would seem (that)
It would seem that someone left the building unlocked.
WORD CHOICE: seem, appear, look, sound
Seem and appear have the same meaning but appear is more formal : They seem upset. | This appears to be a good solution.
You use look to say how someone or something seems to you when you look at them : Maureen looked tired. | That book looks good.
You use sound to say how someone or something seems to you when you hear or read about them, or hear them : She sounds a lovely person. | The party sounded great. |He sounded tired.
Seem can be followed by an adjective or an adjective and noun : She seemed happy. | He seems a nice man.
Seem can also be followed by a verb in the infinitive : His story seems to be true. | You seem to think it's my fault.
!! Seem can be followed by as if or as though but not just by as : It seems a small thing (NOT it seems as a small thing), but it's very important. |It seemed as if he wanted us to leave (NOT it seemed as he wanted ...).

Dictionary of contemporary English. 2013.

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  • seem — [ sim ] verb intransitive never progressive *** 1. ) to appear to be something or appear to have a particular quality: John seems nice. seem (to be) someone/something: Susan seems a very sensible person. seem happy/genuine/relaxed etc. to someone …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • seem´er — seem «seem», intransitive verb. 1. to look like; appear to be: »This apple seemed good but was rotten inside. Does this room seem hot to you? He seemed a very old man. He seemed very strong for his age. 2. to appear to oneself: »I still seem to… …   Useful english dictionary

  • Seem — (s[=e]m), v. i. [imp. & p. p. {Seemed} (s[=e]md); p. pr. & vb. n. {Seeming}.] [OE. semen to seem, to become, befit, AS. s[=e]man to satisfy, pacify; akin to Icel. s[ae]ma to honor, to bear with, conform to, s[ae]mr becoming, fit, s[=o]ma to… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • seem — /seem/, v.i. 1. to appear to be, feel, do, etc.: She seems better this morning. 2. to appear to one s own senses, mind, observation, judgment, etc.: It seems to me that someone is calling. 3. to appear to exist: There seems no need to go now. 4.… …   Universalium

  • seem — seem, look, appear can mean to be as stated in one s view or judgment, but not necessarily in fact Often they are used interchangeably with apparently no difference in meaning {he seems tired} {the students look eager} {the orchestra appeared… …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • seem — [sēm] vi. [ME semen, prob. < ON sœma, to conform to (akin to OE seman, to bring to agreement) < IE base * sem > SAME] 1. a) to appear to be; have the look of being [to seem happy] b) to appear; give the impression: usually followed by an …   English World dictionary

  • Seem — Seem, v. t. To befit; to beseem. [Obs.] Spenser. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • seem — ► VERB 1) give the impression of being. 2) (cannot seem to do) appear to be unable to do, despite having tried. ORIGIN originally also in the sense «be appropriate»: from an Old Norse word meaning fitting …   English terms dictionary

  • seem|ly — «SEEM lee», adjective, li|er, li|est, adverb. –adj. 1. fitting or becoming with respect to good taste; suitable; proper: »Some old people do not consider modern dances seemly. SYNONYM(S) …   Useful english dictionary

  • Seem. — Seem., bei Pflanzennamen Abkürzung für B. Seemann (s. d.) …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

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