recognize

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How will I recognize you?

 and How will I know you?
a question asked by one of two people who have agreed to meet for the first time in a large busy place. Tom: Okay, I'll meet you at the west door of the station. Mary: Fine. How will I recognize you? Tom: I'll be wearing dark glasses. Bill: I'll meet you at six. How will I recognize you? Mary: I'll be carrying a brown umbrella.
See also: how, recognize, will

recognize someone as someone or something

to accept and acknowledge someone to be someone; to accept and acknowledge something to be something. Mary didn't recognize the lawyer as her legal representative. Lizzy didn't recognize the car as her car.
See also: recognize

recognize someone or something by something

to know someone or something by some distinguishing sign. You will be able to recognize me by my long mustache. Mary recognized her car by the ribbon tied to the antenna.
See also: recognize

recognize someone or something for something

 
1. to identify someone or something as something. I recognized the deal for a scam as soon as I heard about it. Anyone could recognize Max for a common thief.
2. to show appreciation to someone or something for something. The organization recognized Laura for her excellent contributions to the philanthropy committee. The officers recognized the committee for its outstanding efforts.
See also: recognize

recognize something for what it is

 and recognize one for what one is
to see and understand exactly what someone or something is or represents. The disease represented a serious threat to all peoples, and Dr. Smith recognized it for what it was. I recognize you for what you are, you scoundrel!
See also: recognize, what
References in classic literature ?
In the contemplation of Beauty we alone find it possible to attain that pleasurable elevation, or excitement of the soul, which we recognize as the Poetic Sentiment, and which is so easily distinguished from Truth, which is the satisfaction of the Reason, or from Passion, which is the excitement of the heart.
Each of us, man or beast, has his own peculiar odor, and it is mostly by this that the beasts of the jungle, endowed with miraculous powers of scent, recognize individuals.
They will provide for their nurture, and will bring the mothers to the fold when they are full of milk, taking the greatest possible care that no mother recognizes her own child; and other wet-nurses may be engaged if more are required.
Then there can be enlargement, and the man of to-day scarcely recognizes the man of yesterday.
Doth the man who recognizes in his own heart no traces of avarice or ambition, conclude, therefore, that there are no such passions in human nature?
Mediocrity knows nothing higher than itself; but talent instantly recognizes genius, and MacDonald had talent enough for his profession to enable him to perceive that there was no humiliation in seeking the assistance of one who already stood alone in Europe, both in his gifts and in his experience.
The good woman, being not a little embarrassed by the novelty of her situation, and certain material apprehensions that perhaps by this time little Jacob, or the baby, or both, had fallen into the fire, or tumbled down stairs, or had been squeezed behind doors, or had scalded their windpipes in endeavouring to allay their thirst at the spouts of tea-kettles, preserved an uneasy silence; and meeting from the window the eyes of turnpike-men, omnibus-drivers, and others, felt in the new dignity of her position like a mourner at a funeral, who, not being greatly afflicted by the loss of the departed, recognizes his every-day acquaintance from the window of the mourning coach, but is constrained to preserve a decent solemnity, and the appearance of being indifferent to all external objects.
But I must have lost it longer than I had thought, since, although I could recognize nothing in the darkness and the fitful lights and shadows of our lamps, I traced marsh country in the cold damp wind that blew at us.
Their own friends did not recognize them: they had lost all their gaiety and spirits.
In previous sections I have said that all figures in Flatland present the appearance of a straight line; and it was added or implied, that it is consequently impossible to distinguish by the visual organ between individuals of different classes: yet now I am about to explain to my Spaceland critics how we are able to recognize one another by the sense of sight.
I would scarcely recognize you, John Carter, but there is no other mortal upon Barsoom who would have done what you have for me.
He did not recognize him though Baynes' canoe was now in mid stream and the features of both its occupants plainly discernible to those on shore.
Here Edmond was to undergo another trial; he was to find out whether he could recognize himself, as he had not seen his own face for fourteen years.
Such barons have states and their own subjects, who recognize them as lords and hold them in natural affection.
I am not surprised that you refused to recognize me.