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The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Discern \Dis*cern"\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Discerned; p. pr. & vb. n. Discerning.] [F. discerner, L. discernere, discretum; dis- + cernere to separate, distinguish. See Certain, and cf. Discreet.] 1. To see and identify by noting a difference or differences; to note the distinctive character of; to discriminate; to distinguish. [1913 Webster] To discern such buds as are fit to produce blossoms. --Boyle. [1913 Webster] A counterfeit stone which thine eye can not discern from a right stone. --Robynson (More's Utopia). [1913 Webster] 2. To see by the eye or by the understanding; to perceive and recognize; as, to discern a difference. [1913 Webster] And [I] beheld among the simple ones, I discerned among the youths, a young man void of understanding. --Prov. vii. 7. [1913 Webster] Our unassisted sight . . . is not acute enough to discern the minute texture of visible objects. --Beattie. [1913 Webster] I wake, and I discern the truth. --Tennyson. Syn: To perceive; distinguish; discover; penetrate; discriminate; espy; descry; detect. See Perceive. [1913 Webster]