read lips

read (one's) lips

1. Literally, to interpret and understand what one says by observing the shapes of the words they form with their lips. Even though I was speaking very softly, Jill could read my lips and knew exactly what I was saying. I can read your lips, but it will help me if you use sign language as well.
2. To pay close attention and listen very carefully to what one says. Usually said as an imperative. A: "Come on, Mom—can I please go out with my friends?" B: "Read my lips—N O means no!" Read my lips—finish your dinner now, or you won't be getting any dessert!
See also: lip, read

read someone's lips

to manage to understand speech by watching and interpreting the movements of the speaker's lips. I couldn't hear her but I could read her lips.
See also: lip, read
References in periodicals archive ?
I started to stare at people when they talked to me, as I was subconsciously learning to read lips. Lord knows how many times in my life that my hearing impairment affected my relationships with the outside world."
That allowed people who were hearing impaired access to the TV news for the first time without having to read lips.
Billy is deaf and has been raised to read lips and speak but without knowledge of sign language.
Most of them can also read lips. While some members of the group come to the restaurant for their meals thrice a day, all of them, almost always, gather on Friday evenings.
She is a speech pathologist who was hired to help Wilder on the 1989 film, "Hear No Evil, See No Evil." He plays a deaf man in the film and she was solicited to help him read lips.
They may wear hearing aids, read lips, or use sign language with their hands
While Schuster can read lips, Kern-Anderson makes it much easier for her to keep up with her peers.
Although his associate, Alexandria Wailes, could both read lips and sign, he had to learn to communicate with the cast on his own.
Conrad wrote that he knew from previous contacts that Toll could read lips.
"He learned how to read lips as a toddler; he started signing before he could talk, but once he started talking ...'' Mrs.
And the deaf ones, they read lips. So everyone can hear.
To make up for the loss, Coleman taught himself how to read lips, using the technique to communicate with his teammates on the field while playing in some of the loudest venues in sports.
Nevertheless, Manal understands others perfectly well, having been trained to read lips. The fact that she was not born deaf, but could once speak and hear properly, helped Al-Ashwal become proficient in lip reading.