Basic+ Word of the Day: dear

dear (adjective, noun) LISTEN

"Dear Mr. Carlson, ..."

We use the word dear at the start of emails or letters. We write it before the name of the person who will get our email. We usually do this only when we are writing to someone we don’t know very well.

  • Dear Alex, …

We can also use dear when we are talking to someone we love. If we use dear, we don’t need to use the person’s name. Sometimes people also use the word dear when they want to be friendly.

  • Hello, my dear!

Don't confuse it with

A deer is an animal, like the famous one in the Disney movie Bambi.

Common uses

When something bad happens, but it isn’t very bad, we sometimes say, “Oh dear!” For example, “Oh dear, I think I left my phone at home!”

In pop culture

Kid President is a little boy who makes videos about things that are important to him. In this video, he wants to learn how to write a good letter to Santa. What does he want from Santa this year?

There are other meanings of dear.

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Word of the Day is released Monday through Friday.

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