1 : to gain knowledge or skill by studying, practicing, being taught, or experiencing something [no obj] ▪ People learn throughout their lives. ▪ He is learning quickly. ▪ I can't swim yet, but I'm learning. — often + about ▪ We learned about the reasons for the war in our history class. — often + from ▪ We all have the ability to learn from our mistakes. ▪ She learned from experience that when grease catches on fire, you shouldn't put water on it. [+ obj] ▪ learn arithmetic ▪ learn a trade ▪ She's interested in learning French. ▪ We had to learn the rules of the game. — often + about ▪ She's been trying to learn more about our family history. — often to + verb ▪ He never learned (how) to dance/swim. ▪ I'm learning to play the guitar. ▪ He learned how not to offend people. ▪ You need to learn (how) to take care of your health.2 [+ obj] : to cause (something) to be in your memory by studying it : memorize
▪ I'm trying to learn my lines for the play. ▪ We had to learn the names of the state capitals. ▪ learn the alphabet3 : to hear or be told (something) : to find out (something) [+ obj] ▪ She learned through/from a letter that her father had died. ▪ I later learned that they had never called. ▪ I was surprised when I learned (that) he wasn't coming. ▪ We finally learned the truth about what had happened. [no obj] — + of ▪ We were shocked to learn of her death. [=to find out about her death] ▪ She first learned of the accident on Monday.4 : to become able to understand (something) through experience [+ obj] ▪ learn the difference between right and wrong ▪ He quickly learned what it means to be a father. ▪ We learned that if we wanted a good job, we had to go to college. ▪ I have learned that life isn't easy. ▪ Someday you'll learn that money is not the most important thing in life. ▪ He learned the hard way that crime doesn't pay. [=he found out by being punished for his crimes] — often followed by to + verb ▪ It's important to learn to respect other people. ▪ It's a bad situation, but we'll just have to learn to live with it. [=we will have to accept it and deal with it] [no obj] ▪ Someday you'll learn. ▪ Even after all his health problems, he's still eating and drinking too much. Some people never learn.
▪ I'm trying to learn my lines for the play. ▪ We had to learn the names of the state capitals. ▪ learn the alphabet
live and learn — see 1live