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figure someone or something out
to begin to comprehend someone or something; to come to understand someone or something better. I just can't figure you out. I can't figure out quiet people readily.
figure somebody outalso figure out somebody
to understand why someone behaves the way they do I've never been able to figure her out. Could anyone ever figure out my parents?
figure out somethingalso figure something out
to understand something by thinking about it After I figured out that I would earn only eighty cents an hour, I said forget it. She spent an hour trying to install the software, but John finally figured it out.Related vocabulary: puzzle out something
1. Discover or determine, as in Let's figure out a way to help. [Early 1900s]
2. Solve or decipher, as in Can you figure out this puzzle? [Early 1800s]
1. To discover or decide something: Let's figure out a way to help. We figured out when to hold the next meeting.
2. To solve or decipher something: Can you figure this puzzle out? Late into the night, I figured out my homework assignment.