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How To Define the Word Refers

Published at 03/16/2012 23:22:39


Defining some English word can be quite a challenging task. This difficulty is mainly associated with adjectives, adverbs and verbs. The situation with defining nouns is not much of a daunting affair as they are more direct.

The word refers, which is a derivative from the verb refer is one pain of masterwork when it comes to definition. Though it is widely used by many, defining it is more than enough share of headache for one person.

There are about five definitions that can be tied to this word. The common thing with all the definitions is that they have a bearing to someone or something. This does not mean that they are all similar as they vary in their meanings.

Step 1

One of the major definitions of the word refers is in mentioning someone or something. This means that the word is used in specifically citing an object. It is also used to mention something that was mentioned earlier.

The second use is mainly used in presentations. It can be used as a sentence; anyone who looks at the appendix will realize that this refers back to the previous notes. It is therefore used in this sense to direct thoughts and attention to another place of interest.

Step 2

The word refers can be used to show someone a place or person. It is used as a sentence to show that one is being sent to someone or somewhere. For instance, a low-level court refers you to a high court or an appeal court if your case is above their jurisdiction. A doctor refers you to a specific specialist or hospital if they cannot handle your case.

Step 3

This is one of the most common uses of this word. It can be used as the formal form of looking for information. This can be in the form of looking for information from a book or map. For instance, a navigator refers to their map, if they are lost during an adventure.

Step 4

It can be used to mean handing over from one stage or point to another. When an information, decision or consideration is submitted by one party, the word refers can be used to bring meaning.

Step 5

The word refers can be used to assign to class, period or era. By doing this it tries to establish or show relationship with a particular kind or class. This is commonly used when you want to pinpoint specific status of something.


There has been a misconception that the phrase refers is redundant and does not follow the rules of repetition. This is because re- means back while the phrase has both words. This is a misplaced objection as this phrase is subject to discussion.

The synonym of one meaning to the word refers must not be similar to another meaning of the same word. In fact, the synonyms are usually different. For instance, when it is used to mention it is said to cite while the same word cannot be applied to show submission.

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