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keep a sharp lookout (for something or someone)

To remain vigilant or carefully watchful (for something or someone). They should be arriving any minute, so keep a sharp lookout. Keep a sharp lookout for a Christmas present we could give your mother. Keep a sharp lookout for the health inspector, we heard he'll be doing a surprise inspection someday soon.

be on the lookout

Watching for something or someone. Be on the lookout for my email! It will have all the instructions you need for the project. A: "What are you guys doing?" B: "We're on the lookout for mom's car, so we can tell dad to stop working on her surprise gift when she gets here."
See also: lookout, on

look out

1. verb To literally peer or gaze out of a place or thing. My cat loves looking out the window and watching all the birds and squirrels outside.
2. verb To be aware of one's surroundings in order to look for or notice something. Look out—there's slippery rocks on that trail! I always look out for deals when I'm shopping.
3. noun One who keeps watch for potential problems or intruders in a particular situation. In this usage, the phrase is usually written as one word ("lookout"). We can't get caught, so you act as a lookout and yell if you hear mom or dad coming.
4. noun The act of keeping watch for potential problems or intruders in a particular situation. In this usage, the phrase is usually written as one word ("lookout"). We can't get caught, so you keep a lookout and yell if you hear mom or dad coming.
See also: look, out

be (one's) (own) lookout

Said of a problem or difficulty that one has caused oneself. Primarily heard in UK. If you stay up till 3 AM, it's your own lookout if you sleep through your alarm.
See also: lookout

look out (of) something

to gaze outward from inside something. (Of is usually retained before pronouns.) Look out of the window and see if it is raining. I looked out of the door to see what the weather was like.
See also: look, out

on the lookout (for someone or something)

watchful for someone or something. Be on the lookout for signs of a storm. I'm on the lookout for John, who is due here any minute.
See also: lookout, on

keep an eye out for

Also, keep a sharp lookout for. Be watchful for something or someone, as in Keep an eye out for the potholes in the road, or They told him to keep a sharp lookout for the police. The first expression, sometimes amplified to keep a sharp eye out for, dates from the late 1800s, the variant from the mid-1700s. Also see have one's eye on, def. 1; keep a weather eye; keep one's eyes open; look out.
See also: eye, keep, out

look out

Also, watch out. Be careful, be watchful, as in Look out that you don't slip and fall on the ice, or Watch out! There's a car coming. [c. 1600] Also see look out for.
See also: look, out

on the lookout

Also, on the watch. Vigilant, alert, as in Be on the lookout for the twins-they're somewhere on this playground, or He was on the watch for her arrival. Both phrases were originally used with upon. Upon the lookout was originally nautical usage, meaning "on duty being watchful" (as for another ship, rocks, or land); it appeared in the mid-1700s, and on replaced upon about a century later. Upon the watch was first recorded in Daniel Defoe's Robinson Crusoe (1719), and on the watch in Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility (1797).
See also: lookout, on

keep an eye out (or open) for

look out for something with particular attention.
1996 Guardian Keep an eye open for kingklip, a delectable fish, and the superb local hake.
See also: eye, keep, out

be on the lookout

1 keep searching for someone or something that is wanted. 2 be alert to danger or trouble.
The word lookout , which originated in naval and military contexts, was first applied, in the late 17th century, to sentries or other people employed to keep watch. The sense of ‘the action of keeping watch’, as used in this expression, dates from the mid 18th century.
See also: lookout, on

be ˈsb’s (own) lookout

(British English, informal) be somebody’s problem because they are responsible for causing it: If he wants to invest all his money in one company, that’s his lookout.It’s my own lookout if I fail this exam.
See also: lookout

be on the ˈlookout (for somebody/something)


keep a ˈlookout (for somebody/something)

be searching (for somebody/something): We’re always on the lookout for good computer programmers.I’m on the lookout for a good book on German history.
See also: lookout, on

look out

To be watchful or careful; take care: If you don't look out, you could fall on the ice. The campers looked out for each other on the hike.
See also: look, out
References in periodicals archive ?
Whilst we are moving forward towards new opportunities, the naming of the lookout means visitors can learn more about the history of our island as well.
The threat caught by Lookout is just the latest instance of compromised apps being removed from the Google Play Store.
According to Lookout, as many as 47 out of 1,000 Android devices has "encountered an app-based threat.
Conceivably, ore from Noront's proposed Black Bird chromite mine would be trucked down a more than 200-kilometre-long road corridor to Sioux Lookout where it would be loaded onto rail cars and shipped to a ferrochrome processing smelter at a yet-to-be announced location by the mining company.
Many states no longer have any staffed forest fire lookouts, according to the lookout association.
fire detection became a priority with the Forest Service, and the lookout program peaked in the 1930s when the Civilian Conservation Corps constructed more than 5,000 towers across the country.
Lookout said it noticed that "numerous" websites had been compromised to execute the attack, although those sites had low traffic.
For the next two decades, Suncor reclamation experts will assess soil, water and vegetation at Wapisiw Lookout to ensure the self-sustaining return of the ecosystem.
Anti-virus firm Lookout Mobile Security estimates that the number of phones that have been infected by the virus, dubbed Geinimi, ranges from the tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands.
Mobile security firm Lookout has studied 300,000 Android and iPhone apps and fully analyzed nearly 100,000 that are free as part of a new App Genome project that's designed to help keep mobile users safe.
Lookout towers used to be places where rangers could view the forests and spot any problems.
TOP notch thriller starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt as a brain damaged janitor who agrees to act as a bank robbery lookout.
Three lookout posts (comprising five observers) reported the plane.