Definition of follow in English:

follow

verb

[WITH OBJECT]
  • 1Go or come after (a person or thing proceeding ahead); move or travel behind.

    ‘she went back into the house, and Ben followed her’
    no object ‘he was following behind in his car’
    • ‘He chuckled behind me and followed me to the dinning room without saying a word.’
    • ‘Carly follows shortly behind and Adam follows her, making sure she doesn't run into anything.’
    • ‘And as he had surmised, twenty more soldiers soon followed in their wake.’
    • ‘Tavisome and Reneeth follow quickly on our heels.’
    • ‘My heart leapt into my throat as I crossed my fingers behind my back and followed her to the door.’
    • ‘If I get up, the dog will wake up and follow me outside.’
    • ‘Dima was moving hastily up the street as he followed at a slower pace.’
    • ‘"I can tell, " Rose replied as she followed close behind him.’
    • ‘Housing issues, service delivery and education as government priorities follow at a distance.’
    • ‘She grabbed the dress and stuck it in her bag before following him outside.’
    • ‘I got up and walked up to the wall, Osake followed close behind.’
    • ‘She followed at the previous pace, and I was forced to slow my steps.’
    • ‘Daniel enters, followed in quick succession by Simon, Karen, and Hector.’
    • ‘The noise I do not leave behind; the clanging follows me.’
    • ‘Darius and Kara just smiled and shook their heads and followed at slower pace.’
    • ‘After that she would follow him from behind whenever she saw him, and one day she hoped that he would love her back.’
    • ‘I groaned, but followed him and looked behind me to find everyone else coming too.’
    • ‘Cathal followed close behind so as not to be left behind on another adventure.’
    • ‘Gunfire from the other group of guarda, now behind him, followed him as he ran.’
    • ‘Now I let it off the chain and it follows me everywhere, obediently heeling.’
    • ‘Given a moment to collect my self, I quickly followed his path out of the bar.’
    • ‘One of the other young men who were following called out to his leader, the one holding Kitty.’
    come behind, come after, go behind, go after, walk behind, tread on the heels of
    accompany, go along with, go around with, travel with, escort, attend, trail around with
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Go after (someone) in order to observe or monitor.
      ‘the KGB man followed her everywhere’
      • ‘Back then, in 1984, it was about the secret policeman who followed him everywhere.’
      • ‘Glancing at the rear mirror, she noticed that the car behind her was still following her.’
      • ‘Ray was aware that someone had been following him, watching him.’
      • ‘All of the children were followed for two years, with their symptoms monitored by the researchers.’
      • ‘When you see this poor guy being followed everywhere he goes by hordes of people, it's actually terribly sad.’
      • ‘He moved out from beside the locker he had stood behind and followed her.’
      • ‘When Vigrass climbed into the driving seat he followed her and watched her mount a kerb.’
      • ‘He was followed some distance and observed by one officer to weave between the lines of the payment.’
      • ‘And I expect you to take appropriate precautions that we are not followed or observed.’
      • ‘The man was followed to a children's playground where his behaviour was observed.’
      • ‘This guy not only follows us everywhere, he had to invade my thoughts too!’
      • ‘We follow at a respectful distance so as not to tire the bear unduly.’
      • ‘Chad had gone to the library in hopes of escaping the gaggle of girls who seemed to follow him around everywhere.’
      • ‘She secretly follows Walter, watching him gather his hockey equipment from his car.’
      • ‘It was the first time Scots had seen a man in shorts and I was followed everywhere by an angry mob with pitch forks and burning torches.’
      • ‘Suspicious, he waited until they had passed and then followed at a distance.’
      • ‘He followed us everywhere with the camera and we reached a point where we really didn't care that he was there.’
      • ‘Inside the palace a squad of four heavily armed troopers followed me everywhere.’
      • ‘We waited until he rounded a corner before we climbed out from behind the can and followed him.’
      • ‘She notices a car behind her and it follows her for quite some time.’
      shadow, trail, pursue, chase, stalk, hunt, track, dog, hound, course
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2archaic Strive after; aim at.
      ‘I follow fame’
    3. 1.3 Go along (a route or path)
      • ‘Flight paths are impossible to mine, and aircraft follow less predictable routes.’
      • ‘They had turned off the main road, away from the noisy traffic, and were following the winding path that was the street on which they lived.’
      • ‘He walked four blocks to the big park, then followed a winding path into the bush.’
      • ‘But I play along, as we follow a bike path past a tank farm, then along the marshy shore of the bay.’
      • ‘It will follow the Pennine Cycleway along the canal from Nelson to Greenberfield locks, Barnoldswick, and back.’
      • ‘Their route plan is to follow the Yukon River to Circle and along the Yukon Flats to Tanana and back to Ruby.’
      • ‘Turn left at the top of the hill and follow the path along the ridge to Darwen Tower.’
      • ‘Cross the stile in the wall and follow the path running along the north side of Upper Ogden reservoir.’
      • ‘Otherwise the route skirts the bottom of the Beacon, and then follows a path to St Agnes village.’
      • ‘All buses will have to follow diversion routes along Bow Lane, Ringway and Corporation Street on Saturday afternoons.’
      • ‘My correction on the map follows approximately the current usage route.’
      • ‘Turn left along the riverbank and follow the path to reach the road bridge.’
      • ‘Students who took part in the fun run followed a circular route along Frome Road, Silver Street Lane and Bradley Road.’
      • ‘It's good to follow winding paths along the way to the mountain.’
      • ‘The Toe to Tow Marathon is a fall classic that follows the path where mules once pulled barges along the Erie Canal.’
      • ‘Go through this and almost immediately cross the wall stile on the left to follow a path down to meet a crossroads of routes at a track.’
      • ‘I followed the path as if by instinct and along the trail to my former summer residence.’
      • ‘Motorists entering from the south have been advised to follow a route along Devizes Road and down Victoria Road.’
      • ‘With the plot laid out in the first twenty minutes, the rest of the film follows two distinct paths.’
      • ‘Ignore the first gate but go through the second and follow a permissive path which leads straight along the river bank.’
      • ‘At present, the only way people can follow the trail routes is by printing the maps from the Swindon Heritage Town Trails website.’
    4. 1.4 (of a route or path) go in the same direction as or parallel to (another)
      ‘the road follows a hidden sweetwater brook’
      • ‘Alternatively, a tram route could follow above the rising Northern Line to Morden station.’
      • ‘Raced over a six kilometre distance for women and 12 km for men the course follows the Grande Motte coastline of the Mediterranean.’
      • ‘Consequently if Antonie is coaching he will do it while rowing a single or by running along the path that follows Melbourne's Yarra River.’
      • ‘Most of the way the route follows the Buller River and in some places the road is narrow and winding.’
      • ‘Despite numerous changes around the two-and-a-half mile oval, the track still follows much the same route as it did nearly 100 years ago.’
      • ‘The route follows well waymarked paths from Hawkshead across low pastures to the charming settlement of Colthouse.’
      • ‘Their route followed the earlier tracks worn by the explorer Major Mitchell.’
      • ‘The flight path follows the narrow winding passage of the deep Karnali River Gorge as it cuts between the major mountain chains.’
      • ‘This is undulating country and for part of the way the road follows the Grey River.’
      • ‘The route follows lightly traveled roads through rolling countryside and scenic farmland.’
      • ‘The main cross country ski route follows the summertime seven-mile loop road which accesses many of the main features found at the monument.’
      • ‘The walk - a nine-and-a-half-mile circular - was along the Senior Way, which closely follows the Cullingworth parish boundaries.’
      • ‘Much of the route follows the towpath of the Caledonian Canal.’
      • ‘The study identified a 34-mile double track route largely following the old line.’
      • ‘The path follows the burn down to Aultlarie Bridge and the main road, but a new stretch of footpath runs back towards Newtonmore parallel to the road.’
      • ‘The original route follows the stream along a narrow winding rift, to where the stream plunges into the final, and longest shaft.’
      • ‘For those who do not want to follow the main road a twisting path follows the meander of the river and meets the road to Gisburn at Higherford Bridge.’
      • ‘Another well used route followed the coast, serving communities too small to warrant LNA service.’
      • ‘The path follows the coast along the side of the fairways and greens until you reach Belhaven Bay and a bridge linking two beaches on either side of Biel Water.’
      • ‘The path follows the course of the Vézère River.’
    5. 1.5 Keep track of; trace the movement or direction of.
      ‘she followed his gaze, peering into the gloom’
      • ‘They are like the eyes you find in older paintings that seemed to follow you around everywhere you go’
      • ‘Her eyes followed his every movement as he crossed over her legs, crawling over to his side of the bed.’
      • ‘Raylaa's gaze followed his and she gasped, pushing herself off the bed towards it.’
      • ‘Her gaze had followed his to the unknown beauty, and her eyes narrowed dangerously.’
      • ‘Her eyes followed Bizzy as he closed Gaz's front door and walked across the gravel drive to the car.’
      • ‘Stefan Klos was attentive in following the ball's late diversion, before palming it round the post.’
      • ‘The bird had a long beak that was composed of many colors, and its glossy black eyes seemed to follow my every movement.’
      • ‘They stepped from his path without a word and their eyes followed his every movement.’
      • ‘He didn't even seem to try, but everywhere he went girls followed him with their eyes.’
      • ‘Her gaze followed everyone in the same way, but Olumer didn't think he should have let it get to him so much.’
      • ‘Sonia nods, and Walt's gaze follows hers to the labyrinth in the floor.’
      • ‘She heard his intake of breath as his gaze followed hers to the forest edge.’
      • ‘Smooth pursuit eye movements are used to follow a moving target that one is looking at directly.’
      • ‘His eyes followed her from behind his drink as she moved surely about the room.’
      • ‘You almost expect the eye of a painting to follow your every movement.’
      • ‘Takmet's gaze followed her only a few feet and he closed his eyes again and faced the floor.’
      • ‘Khushi's eyes followed the boy and watched him approach an elderly couple.’
      • ‘Kratos' gaze followed the two clubbers as they left the street, his mind sent awhirl by what Fezz had said.’
      • ‘Aimée smiled sadly as she watched him follow the sweet girl with his eyes.’
  • 2Come after in time or order.

    ‘the six years that followed his restoration’
    no object ‘the rates are as follows’
    • ‘Although this is an ongoing project, what follows are reports of progress in the main areas of activity.’
    • ‘The main gripes of the anti-Howard/anti-Hanson forces are as follows, not in order of preference.’
    • ‘When all the cards have been played, points are scored in order as follows.’
    • ‘What follows is her firsthand account of daily life in Iraq.’
    • ‘The acts followed in quick succession, mostly performing two or three songs each.’
    • ‘Much of Saturday will be taken up with a visit to the Mersey River Festival followed by a dinner dance at the Daten Club, Culcheth.’
    • ‘What follows is a fictional account of the ideal way I would like to die.’
    • ‘The eight finalists in alphabetical order are as follows.’
    • ‘The stories that follow are all fictionalized accounts of my life in the suburbs.’
    • ‘What follows is an account of my sincere attempt to follow various directives from Life's Little Treasure Book On Joy.’
    • ‘The full top ten, in no particular order, is as follows.’
    • ‘Other more radical comments have followed in the wake of Singer.’
    • ‘So what follows is a mostly-true account of that week in France.’
    • ‘On Tuesday Requiem Mass was celebrated and followed by burial in the adjoining Cemetery.’
    • ‘The British Bankers' Association is now in discussions with the watchdog to see whether cuts to current accounts must follow.’
    • ‘The event will be followed by an in-depth interview and a Q&A session.’
    • ‘However, I still cannot understand or rationalise the distressing sequence of events that followed his death.’
    • ‘This occasion was followed by fun tug-of-war events for children and adults.’
    • ‘However, in the days that followed, this ooda current became stronger and brighter.’
    • ‘The Sunday meeting follows hot on the heels of the recent Ulster Grand National meeting.’
    1. 2.1 Happen after (something else) as a consequence.
      ‘raucous laughter followed the ribald remark’
      no object ‘retribution soon followed’
      • ‘Zitelli has great memories of the Rangers match, and events that followed at Glasgow Airport.’
      • ‘This makes the events that follow all the more poignant, and later heart-rending.’
      • ‘The period of high extinction risk was followed immediately by a short period of very high origination probability.’
      • ‘The penalty that followed did not account for the impact of the foul play.’
      • ‘There was first the bipolar world order, followed by its negation and the emergence of a unipolar world order.’
      • ‘Is the train of tragic events that follows a manifestation of its destructive nature?’
      • ‘Events which followed confirmed the efficacy of the declaration and its timing.’
      • ‘The move to close the companies follows a DTI investigation, results of which have not been disclosed.’
      • ‘A long silence followed which was finally broken by Scully.’
      • ‘Three successful transplant operations followed which offered some small consolation to all who loved Nikita.’
      • ‘A few minutes of stunned silence followed in the wake of that statement.’
      • ‘The new legislation follows on the heels of recent Senate hearings on the issue.’
      • ‘The turn of events follows staff performance assessments authorised by both the administration and political management here.’
      • ‘The crash, and the events which followed, have lived on in infamy.’
      • ‘From Mexico, the spread of viticulture followed swiftly on the heels of Spanish conquests.’
      • ‘On the contrary, progress follows upon repeated trials and the elimination of errors.’
      • ‘This schism had a profound effect on the events that followed in the denomination.’
      • ‘People were asked for their opinions about this and very fruitful discussion followed which put forward many suggestions.’
      • ‘These percentages appear to have increased somewhat following the Revolution.’
      • ‘The temporary set-back followed hot on the heels of a mixed week for RealNetworks.’
      result, arise, develop, ensue, emanate, issue, proceed, spring, flow, originate, stem
      View synonyms
    2. 2.2no object Be a logical consequence of something.
      ‘it thus follows from this equation that the value must be negative’
      • ‘Now, what is the legal consequence that follows from that set of circumstances?’
      • ‘It follows that the account in terms of status functions is not a rival of the account in terms of deontic power.’
      • ‘I don't think it follows from this that we ought to police thought in the strict sense of using the legitimate violence of the state.’
      • ‘This follows from the fact that logically equivalent statements always are assigned the same probability.’
      • ‘It follows from this that one's self, atman, is also Brahman: hence the famous expression atman is Brahman.’
      • ‘How, exactly, does the terminology usually regarded by logicians as logical work in making it the case that one sentence follows from others?’
      • ‘Hence it follows from the idea of God, as an all-perfect being, that God exists.’
      • ‘They tell us what follows from what, not what to believe on the basis of what.’
      • ‘It follows from this conception of pleasure that every instance of pleasure must be good to some extent.’
      • ‘It follows from Spinoza's theory that God is not distinct from the world but identical with it.’
      • ‘What consequence do you say follows from that fact for this litigation?’
      • ‘It follows from Kant's view that we know a priori that non-Euclidean geometry cannot be applied in physics.’
      • ‘It follows that foreign trade would be cut back to a fraction of what it is at present.’
      • ‘It follows from this that two functions with identical derivatives differ by at most a constant.’
      • ‘What, if any, consequence follows from this failure to work it out, as you put it?’
      • ‘What is the consequence you say follows from that for fairness of trial of the principal issues joined in the action?’
      • ‘Note that each line in a proof is either an axiom, or follows from previous lines by one of the simple rules.’
      • ‘It follows from Galileo's theory that there should be just one high tide each day at a given location, and that it should occur around noon.’
      • ‘What with all the government awareness campaigns, it follows that they do so knowingly and willingly.’
      • ‘The conspiracy theory that logically follows from Darren's findings is so delicious that I find myself longing for it to be true.’
      • ‘It follows that every event may be described on two levels and according to two causes.’
    3. 2.3with object and adverbial (of a person) do something after (something else)
      ‘he follows his surprise hit movie with a paranoid thriller’
      • ‘He follows with an account of the place of corn in the Atlantic slave trade.’
      • ‘Stojakovic followed with his trade demand after the Kings let go of his good friend Vlade Divac.’
    4. 2.4often be followed by Have (a dish or course) after another or others in a meal.
      ‘turkey was followed by dessert’
      • ‘On arrival, they had a wine reception, followed by a scrumptious meal of Christmas fare.’
      • ‘In the afternoon everyone took a seat under the trees in the garden and enjoyed lunch, followed by desserts.’
      • ‘Tobacco panna cotta will be followed by a course of fillet of char with a honey-smoked pistachio crust.’
      • ‘There is also a Thai menu for those not into the American cuisine, followed by desserts and alcoholic coffees.’
      • ‘What if I want to go out for a drink, followed by a nice meal and be in a comfortable, smoke-free environment?’
      • ‘Christmas features the presentation of the turkey or ham, followed by the Christmas pudding.’
      • ‘A glass of sherry was served on our arrival, followed by a delicious three course meal.’
      • ‘Cups of cappuccino concluded the meal, followed by a plate of anise and bacon brittle.’
      • ‘So I finally threw in the towel and conceded over a very nice steak, followed by a cheese course.’
      • ‘We had worked our way through a lazy, two-hour lunch in which one good dish followed another.’
      • ‘Home made shepherds pie would go down a treat, followed by a cherry pie and custard.’
  • 3Act according to (an instruction or precept)

    ‘he has difficulty in following written instructions’
    • ‘If people do not follow the rules of this court the only way actually to make them remember them for the future is to apply them.’
    • ‘What good are the things that I profess, the exercise and nutrition, if people don't follow it.’
    • ‘I was in a hurry to do this and just blindly followed the instructions.’
    • ‘Why didn't people follow orders like they were supposed to?’
    • ‘Smith said teachers follow standard rules, such as avoiding being left alone with pupils without witnesses.’
    • ‘Speaking exclusively to the Yorkshire Post, he said the electorate should look at whether politicians follow their own rules.’
    • ‘Ancient people followed the words of such sages and seldom cut their hair throughout their whole lives.’
    • ‘But dietary advice is often neglected by doctors because so many people do not follow it.’
    • ‘In fact it's not even that important to me that people follow the instructions.’
    • ‘He also advised that people follow the traditional rules set in place.’
    • ‘As employees and as consumers, most people follow orders with little voice or influence.’
    • ‘The same procedure was strictly followed at the end of the pulmonary rehabilitation program for patients with COPD.’
    • ‘The instruction was followed immediately as they stepped out in unison before moving one step to the right.’
    • ‘How rigidly people follow the rules may depend upon how strictly the rules are enforced.’
    • ‘If something is done literally, a person follows instructions ‘to the letter’, without flexibility or imagination.’
    • ‘However, he regretted that people had not followed the words of Bharathi.’
    • ‘We like to think of people exercising their personal judgment, and not just blindly following the rules.’
    • ‘Edgar immediately followed instruction and we walked passed him.’
    • ‘It's absolutely essential that you understand and follow everything that I tell you to do.’
    • ‘People might not follow your recommendations the first time, but they will listen the second time.’
    act in accordance with, abide by, adhere to, stick to, keep to, comply with, conform to, obey, observe, heed, pay attention to, note, have regard to, mind, bear in mind, take to heart, be guided by, accept, yield to, defer to, respect
    View synonyms
    1. 3.1 Conform to.
      ‘the film faithfully follows Shakespeare's plot’
      • ‘All twenty five of the books will follow a fairly rigid design sense, so most of the work was done in the initial stages.’
      • ‘As far as the modern names are concerned, the book follows the IMA guidelines, although the author does prefer to capitalize mineral names.’
      • ‘Whitt's book follows a predictably chronological organization, mirroring the author's evolution as a creative artist.’
      • ‘The results are a stunning mix of surprisingly wearable garments that develop, rather than slavishly follow, current trends.’
      • ‘They worked to make the films follow the books closely and did a fantastic job of this.’
      • ‘Teachers follow a traditional way of teaching and work with a rigid framework.’
      • ‘Shadow Skill slavishly follows the rules of the fighting anime genre as if it expects a test later.’
      • ‘The closer a particular product follows the ANSI standard protocols, the easier it will be to use that product in a particular application.’
      • ‘Agency, state, and university human subject protocols were followed to ensure subject confidentiality.’
      • ‘This book follows the conventional Thames & Hudson formula of introductory text plus detailed case studies.’
      • ‘In terms of chronology, the film follows the conventional rise-and-fall structure of the traditional biopic.’
      • ‘In India, many people follow a tradition; if their family tradition is that they are going to talk about death, they do so.’
      • ‘Most people follow a subsistence way of life, growing food mainly for their own needs with little left over.’
      • ‘Moreover, the starting and ending points of these cycles follow a pattern related to seasons on Earth.’
      • ‘In that respect, the film follows Wells' book faithfully.’
      • ‘Robert Harvey follows in this tradition by emphasising the English dimension in the contest.’
      • ‘They are little social commentaries and that is following in the great Scottish tradition.’
      • ‘When making decisions, state officials refuse to take reality into account and follow the same old models.’
      • ‘No other religious book on the earth follows this Divine Pattern and style that is so distinct.’
      • ‘He said the pilot's decision on silence followed standard procedure and that the government supported it.’
      act in accordance with, abide by, adhere to, stick to, keep to, comply with, conform to, obey, observe, heed, pay attention to, note, have regard to, mind, bear in mind, take to heart, be guided by, accept, yield to, defer to, respect
      View synonyms
    2. 3.2 Act according to the lead or example of (someone)
      ‘he follows Aristotle in believing this’
      • ‘She hoped other businesses would follow the Eric Wright Group's lead, stressing it was vital the momentum did not slow down.’
      • ‘Segregation by sex is common, and children tend to follow their parents example and occupations.’
      • ‘One name to watch out for is Nigel Clough who could yet follow his dad to glory.’
      • ‘The people have followed the doings of some of their principal servants in front of the Hutton inquiry.’
      • ‘I think we shall see more people follow my lead and learn how to successfully use black on its own to create stunning dark borders.’
      • ‘It is much easier to follow someone else's lead than to come up with the route yourself and lead the group.’
      • ‘Now she hopes other business people will follow her lead and contribute.’
      • ‘I spent my childhood blindly following his lead, striving to become the man he was.’
      • ‘Tiger Woods follows Phil Mickelson's example by making a birdie at the 13th, to restore a three-shot lead.’
      • ‘They immediately mounted their horses, then followed his lead deeper into the woods.’
      • ‘What happens when a veteran mountain guide has to follow someone else's lead for a day of heli-skiing?’
      • ‘I hope other people will follow our lead and contact Get Connected!’
      • ‘We know from grim experience that footballers slavishly follow the lead of their manager.’
      • ‘Giving money to charities and building bridges does not mean that people should follow your lead.’
      • ‘Ainslie followed Shirley Robertson's lead in claiming Britain's second sailing gold of the Games.’
      • ‘I wish other people would follow my example especially in the area I live in as it is quite a disgrace.’
      • ‘The Haftorah teaches that Torah will enlighten those who follow King Chiram's example.’
      imitate, copy, mimic, ape, reproduce, mirror, echo
      View synonyms
    3. 3.3 Treat as a teacher or guide.
      ‘those who seek to follow Jesus Christ’
      • ‘We seek to follow Jesus, acknowledging that we are all learners and flawed.’
      • ‘I reasoned with myself that we had tried to follow God, we had observed the Talmud.’
      • ‘Now the party of the circumcision would refer to Christians or people who follow Jesus who practice circumcision.’
  • 4Pay close attention to (something)

    ‘I've been following this discussion closely’
    • ‘If I had been in Bradford I would have followed this closely through your columns.’
    • ‘I think the Vatican is going to be following closely what this document says.’
    1. 4.1 Maintain awareness of the current state or progress of (events in a particular sphere or account)
      ‘young Italians follow football’
      • ‘I was just fifteen when the first section was launched, and I've followed it with some interest for all those years.’
      • ‘I followed the Premiership matches on satellite television in Finland so I have a good idea of what to expect.’
      • ‘People follow each move with eager interest, and discuss the idiosyncrasies of the players.’
      • ‘Mel follows current affairs rather more closely than me.’
      • ‘Some people follow the cyberpunk genre quite closely, and for them this novel is a must-read.’
      • ‘In fact, many people eagerly follow the weather forecasts whenever bad weather is looming.’
      • ‘This will be one situation that will be followed with interest from a lot of different perspectives.’
      • ‘Give them an issue, and a decent debate, and people will follow politics on TV.’
      • ‘They followed trends like some people follow sports teams - with this undying devotion.’
      • ‘In his leisure time he follows West Ham United and plays golf off a handicap of 12’
      • ‘I don't follow the video game industry much, but at first glance it looks like Sega is making a good move.’
      • ‘The players are aware that people have followed them all season and they wanted to do it for them as well.’
      • ‘Most sports that people follow pit either individuals or teams against each other, all season long.’
      • ‘He's lived in that country, knows some of the participants in the current crisis, and follows events there closely.’
      • ‘This merits our attention, regardless of what division we follow the closest.’
      • ‘So we will continue to follow that live event that's happening right now.’
      • ‘They all have a satellite dish, and they follow everything.’
      be a fan of, be a supporter of, support, be a follower of, be an admirer of, be a devotee of, be devoted to
      View synonyms
    2. 4.2 (of a person or account) be concerned with the development of (something)
      ‘the book follows the life and career of Henry Clay’
      • ‘Fly Me To The Moon follows the flight path of a group of terrified travellers striving to conquer their fear of flying.’
      • ‘The story follows closely the real events which happened in the '70s while changing only a few details.’
      • ‘Set in the late 18th century, the film follows our very fictionalized brothers, played by Matt Damon and Heath Ledger.’
      • ‘The programme follows Bernard O'Malley's journey as he attempts to uncover any clues the police may have missed.’
      • ‘The film follows an ubergeek in his ungodly pursuit of Alison, the girl of his dreams.’
      • ‘The film follows Ramu, who enjoys teaching Indian dance in New Delhi but has far greater ambitions to become a superstar.’
      • ‘In contrast, the programme follows Colin, the groundsman, in his quest to keep the Meadow End from sinking.’
      • ‘The film follows the Jalsindhi villagers through hunger strikes, rallies, police brutality and a six year Supreme Court battle.’
      • ‘This book follows the whole ‘Modern Pagan working magik in the big city’ deal.’
      • ‘Set in 1953 at Wellesley College, the film follows Stiles and her classmates on the brink of the feminist revolution.’
      • ‘The programme follows American-born Des as he visits some of the worst trouble-spots in Ireland.’
      • ‘The programme follows Gordon as he tries to help bereaved parents Greta and Andrew Rhodes seek solace following the death of their son.’
      • ‘As may be expected, the book follows the church's historical development.’
      • ‘Found only in Luke, the story follows two critical events.’
      • ‘This book basically follows a Chicken as he wanders through the farm.’
      • ‘And the second book follows Bourdain as he criss-crosses the world sampling local delicacies from the sublime to the bizarre.’
    3. 4.3 Track (a person, group, or organization) by subscribing to their account on a social media website or application.
      ‘if you've been following me on Facebook recently you may have seen a bunch of different posts about surgery and back trouble’
      ‘I don't follow many celebrities on Twitter anymore’
      • ‘For those of you who aren't following me on Facebook, here is a picture of the growing little tyke.’
      • ‘The easiest way to see all the updates at once as they come in is to open a Twitter account yourself and "Follow" these Twitterers.’
      • ‘Following people on Twitter only reminds you what you could be watching at the Glastonbury festival.’
      • ‘This may not make much sense to people who have only recently started following this site, FYI.’
      • ‘There's no option to become friends with the Queen on Facebook, nor follow her updates on Twitter.’
      • ‘Send me a message on Twitter or on Facebook, or you can follow me on Foursquare as well, and check out my blog.’
      • ‘There are only a couple hundred people currently following us on Twitter.’
      • ‘Please also join me on Facebook, and follow me on Twitter.’
      • ‘I'd just gotten on Facebook to follow my daughter.’
      • ‘And while you're on the Web page, check out how you can follow us on Facebook and Twitter.’
      • ‘He was giving updates by the second, by the minute, to people who were following him on Twitter.’
      • ‘I follow him on Facebook, but it's all alarmist activist type stuff that just doesn't appeal to me.’
      • ‘And Senator, I put that out to some of my viewers who follow me on Twitter and Facebook, and I got a bit of a mixed bag.’
      • ‘We do note however that a whole bunch of Labour MP's are following us on Twitter!’
      • ‘Thus, even though users declare that they follow many people using Twitter, they only keep in touch with a small number of them.’
      • ‘We've got about 20,000 people who follow us on Facebook and MySpace.’
      • ‘I'm a luddite in comparison with some of the people I follow on Twitter, but a nerd in comparison with many people.’
      • ‘Make sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter.’
      • ‘If any of you follow me on Facebook and saw my status update late lastnight, I would like to vent my reason for it.’
      • ‘Twitter burps out your thoughts in 140-character or less messages to people who follow you.’
    4. 4.4 Understand the meaning or tendency of (a speaker or argument)
      ‘I still don't follow you’
      • ‘Dialect is explained so people can follow the speaker's meaning.’
      • ‘I said I'd prefer to go home and then there was some discussion I couldn't follow much of through my fog but nodded away.’
      • ‘It is necessary to set out parts of this schedule if the argument is to be followed.’
      understand, comprehend, apprehend, take in, grasp, fathom, appreciate, keep up with, see
      View synonyms
  • 5Practice (a trade or profession)

    carry out, perform, do, observe, put into practice, execute, exercise
    work at, pursue a career in, have a career in, go in for, engage in, specialize in, ply
    View synonyms
    1. 5.1 Undertake or carry out (a course of action or study)
      ‘she followed a strict diet’
      • ‘All seven will follow a strict training regime between now and the games and all in the Delta Centre will be very supportive of their work.’
      • ‘It's fair to assume he had simply forgotten what to do, being four-and-a-half years since he had needed to follow such a course of action.’
      • ‘Women who strictly follow the Atkins diet could be damaging their chances of getting pregnant, new research has shown.’
      • ‘Despite this, Hon Shun followed a strict moral code, particularly with regard to telepathy.’
      • ‘Lighting a lamp near a Tulsi plant is a ritual followed by people almost all over the country.’
      • ‘Class stratification is also at work as those in the highest castes follow the strictest vegetarian diet.’
      • ‘But Maute says he follows a strict training regime to keep in top form.’
      • ‘The United States, incidentally, was hardly the only occupying power to follow such a course.’
      • ‘Do your best to follow the most effective practices and be the best leader you can be.’
      • ‘Now, did the primary judge at any point indicate which of those courses would have been followed?’
      • ‘If either of these courses had been followed, there would be no problem with the presumption of innocence.’
      • ‘I think the sea would be a far better place for all creatures if more people followed this approach.’
      • ‘You might be worried that if humans followed such a course, it would expose animals to danger.’
      • ‘The trouble is that many people do not follow a good diet.’
      • ‘These academic subjects formed the basis of the studia humanitatis, the course of study followed by most young men of the period.’
      • ‘Like good Hindus, langurs follow a strict vegetarian diet - give or take the occasional munch of a locust or larva.’
      • ‘If a person follows true anarchy, there is no contradiction involved.’
      • ‘It's going to take me a long time to calm her down, so I decide to follow the easiest course.’
      • ‘The timing of this may well also depend on what course is to be followed and when the matter could be brought on.’
      • ‘Paul spends hours every week working on arm wrestling techniques, follows a strict training regime and carefully studies videos of opponents.’
      conduct, undertake, carry on, devote oneself to, go on with, proceed with, go ahead with, carry on with, keep on with, continue with, continue, take further, prosecute, persist in, stick at, stick with
      View synonyms

Phrases

  • follow one's nose

    • 1Trust to one's instincts.

      ‘you are on the right track so follow your nose’
      • ‘Mark likes to follow his nose on these things, and I never argue with his results.’
      • ‘Turn right at the Romanc sign and then follow your nose.’
      • ‘It was thrilling to find something the old-fashioned way, to track it down, to follow my nose and ears and eyes.’
      • ‘So most of the time you're simply following your nose as to what's going on.’
      • ‘An artist seeking a way to protest against graduating from university with student-loan debts of £15,000 has decided to follow his nose.’
      • ‘He followed his nose and it led him to a large black building with graffiti on it.’
      • ‘Sure enough, he could smell the magic in the air, and he followed his nose across the great hall and down a long series of hallways.’
      • ‘Then it's a question of following your nose along the winding ridge ahead, savouring the views.’
      • ‘Too lazy to actually hunt, I followed my nose back to Mom's house.’
    • 2Move along guided by one's sense of smell.

      • ‘Instead, all they have to do is follow their nose - the sweet, strong smell pervades the entire gallery.’
      • ‘As she descended the stairs, she could smell the aroma of roast beef and she followed her nose into the dining room.’
      • ‘Before my nostrils could become desensitised to the aroma, I decided to follow my nose to its source.’
      • ‘She felt something warm and some kind of smell intrigued her so she followed her nose, until she disappears from the desert all together.’
      • ‘It wasn't like a gas leak smell, but it was a strong pungent odor, so he followed his nose to where it smelled like it was coming from.’
      • ‘Going through one door, she caught the smell of food preparation, and followed her nose to the remote kitchen, where she lingered just outside the doorway.’
      • ‘She rolled on her side, following her nose to breakfast, that Will must have prepared before she woke.’
      • ‘Enter the club's driveway between the Duron Paints store and the entrance to Kelly Drive or follow your nose to the smoky down-home barbecue.’
      • ‘Just wait for the unmistakable smell of heavy oil mingled with a teeth-clenching sweetness and follow your nose.’
      • ‘Visit the souk of the goldsmiths, for example, or the hat makers, or follow your nose to the spice market.’
    • 3Go straight ahead.

      • ‘Cross a stile on to the moorland and follow your nose due east on well - trodden paths, basically sticking to the higher ground.’
      • ‘Turn right through a gate to enter a housing estate, and follow your nose to the main street and back to Doune Ponds.’
      • ‘The man took a deep breath and followed his nose to the young boy.’
      • ‘When the Storm Troopers were out of sight, I followed my nose in the direction the council had started going.’
      • ‘Opening them once more, she followed her nose to the far end of the opposite hall.’
      • ‘Once in Seahouses, just follow your nose to the harbour.’
  • follow suit

    • 1(in bridge, whist, and other card games) play a card of the suit led.

      • ‘If a card which is not a trump is led, players who have cards of this suit must either follow suit or trump.’
      • ‘If a non-trump is led and you can follow suit, you cannot play a Joker declaring it to be a trump.’
      • ‘If there is a trump suit, a player who can follow suit must either follow suit or play a trump if possible.’
      • ‘You must follow suit if you can; if you cannot follow suit, any card may be played.’
      • ‘When a non-trump is led, players who have a card of the suit led must either follow suit or play a trump.’
      • ‘Players must follow suit if possible - a player who cannot follow suit may discard any card.’
      • ‘When there are no trumps, a player who is unable to follow suit may play any card.’
      • ‘In these places you are only allowed to play a trump if a trump is led, or if you are unable to follow suit to a non-trump lead.’
      • ‘However, when a non-trump is led and you are following suit, there is no obligation to beat the cards previously played to the trick.’
      • ‘When a double is led everyone must follow suit with a double if possible.’
      1. 1.1Conform to another's actions.
        ‘Spain cut its rates by half a percent but no other country has followed suit’
        • ‘And if the hotel in Robertstown follows suit it could be another desperate blow to the entire Northwest Kildare area.’
        • ‘The darker, more downhome Black Letter Days follows suit with a similar, constantly undulating quality level.’
        • ‘Janu follows suit and they share the spoils of quitting.’
        • ‘The rest of the young cast follows suit, miming up a storm, sipping imaginary sacramental wine from invisible chalices.’
        • ‘Thankfully, the McGuinty government in Ontario kept its promise to raise cigarette taxes; let's hope the federal government follows suit.’
        • ‘The Downtown Arts District follows suit, with an open house.’
        • ‘And algae follows suit, converting sunlight to growth.’
        • ‘And the rest follows suit, if you've got the aptitude and talent for it.’
        • ‘If the boss pulls back then his company follows suit, no question.’
        • ‘A map with table numbers covering all seven divisions, trains and destinations and separate indices for Express and Passenger trains follows suit.’
        emulate, copy, take as a model, model oneself on, take as a pattern, pattern oneself after, pattern oneself on, follow the example of, take as an example, take as a role model, take after, follow, follow in someone's footsteps, follow in someone's steps
        View synonyms

Phrasal Verbs

  • follow through

    • (in golf, baseball, and other sports) continue one's movement after the ball has been struck or thrown.

      • ‘Berard was struck in the eye by the stick of the Senators' Marian Hossa, who was following through on a shot.’
      • ‘Watch the fingers as the player follows through.’
      • ‘The goal came about after Doran had collected a sideline ball from Walsh and followed through to the back of the net.’
      • ‘I did as he told me, keeping my eyes focused on the back of the target ball as I smoothly followed through with the cue.’
      • ‘Jessica slid her hands down as she continued to follow through on the choreography.’
      • ‘His right knee followed through and struck Frankie's groin with such force that he was thrown several feet into the air.’
      • ‘All you need is a Belichick-like game plan and the courage to follow through with it.’
      • ‘When batting lefthanded, Castillo will try to release his top hand as he follows through after contact.’
      • ‘As his knees unbend, his right hand follows through toward the target.’
      • ‘Wilson followed through to force the ball past his former team mate, receiving a knock in the process.’
  • follow something through

    • Continue an action or task to its conclusion.

      • ‘Once we report the complaint, we are committed to following a civil case through to its conclusion, again out of fairness.’
      • ‘Lamont follows this argument through to its logical conclusion.’
      • ‘I had to follow it through to its conclusion or semi-conclusion.’
      • ‘Lewis has found an incredible story here, and he follows it through to its logical conclusion.’
      • ‘Indeed, we should embrace these stirrings so enthusiastically that we demand they are followed through to their proper conclusion.’
      • ‘I know that I have not fully followed some of the arguments through.’
      • ‘I feel you ease into deals by continually following through on what you say you will do, and you eventually earn the client's trust.’
      • ‘The arrestingly capricious mood of his concerto's second movement is not followed through.’
      • ‘Finally, we do individual sessions to follow people through a full task, to make certain it's working the way they want it to.’
      • ‘They were there at the onset of this specific struggle, and they want to follow it through to its conclusion.’
      complete, bring to completion, bring to a finish, continue to the end, see something through
      View synonyms
  • follow something up

    • Pursue or investigate something further.

      ‘I decided to follow up the letters with phone calls’
      • ‘Our patients are part of an ongoing investigation, and they were followed up prospectively as part of their clinical evaluation process.’
      • ‘An eminent medical investigator followed it up a year later.’
      • ‘Every decade they will be followed up so that scientists can study which groups of patients go on to develop conditions such as cancer or heart disease.’
      • ‘My contention is they didn't follow it up or investigate any of it further.’
      • ‘Five were found to be playing truant and their cases will be followed up by education welfare officers.’
      • ‘Your task is to follow up with the progress of each task and keep everyone on the same page.’
      • ‘Any site brought to our attention is followed up immediately and legal proceedings initiated where appropriate.’
      • ‘Sabina excelled in her GCSE exams and now hopes to follow up her current course with a beautician course before going to university.’
      • ‘Hope Hospital is investigating why the first smear was not followed up and Claire was told she could not have cancer.’
      • ‘We carry out annual inspections and there are also spot checks and any complaints are followed up.’
      investigate, research, find out about, look into, dig into, delve into, make enquiries into, enquire about, ask questions about, pursue, chase up
      View synonyms

Origin

Old English folgian, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch volgen and German folgen.

Pronunciation

follow

/ˈfälō//ˈfɑloʊ/