c. 1300, "to perceive, notice," especially of internal observation (a sense now obsolete), from Old French apercevoir "perceive, notice, become aware of" (11c.), from Latin ad "to" (see ad-) + percipere "gather, seize entirely," also, figuratively, "to grasp with the mind, learn, comprehend" (see perceive). In modern psychological use (1876), it is a back-formation from apperception (q.v.). Related: Apperceived; apperceiving; apperceptive.
updated on September 23, 2022