realize and notice

12.12.05 English Tips

Many students of English have trouble choosing between these two verbs and deciding which is more appropriate. While they are similar in meaning, they are not identical.

notice:  to see, hear, or feel something

・He was late to class, but his teacher did not notice.
・You may notice a numb feeling in your toes.

realize 1: to know and understand the importance of something

・Do you realize that the meeting started an hour ago?
・I realize how much she means to you.

realize 2:  to suddenly know something that you had not noticed before

・I suddenly realized that the taxi driver was going the wrong way.
・Bill didn’t realize his mistake until the next day.

The definitions of realize include the word “know”, while the definition of notice includes “see, hear or feel”. In other words, realizing is something which involves thinking about a situation. Noticing is more of a physical event in which something comes to our attention through our senses. It is possible to notice something without realizing that it is important.

notice と realize の使い分けに苦労することありませんか? どちらも似たような意味ですが、同じではありません。

 notice: 何かを見る、聞く、感じる


 realize 1重要な何かを理解する、知る


realize 2前は気づかなかった何かに突然気付く


realizeの定義には、単語“know(=知る)”の意を含んでおり、一方notice の定義には、“see, hear or feel (=見る、聞く、感じる)” が含まれています。言いかえると、Realizingは頭でその状態を理解すること、Noticingは感覚を通して感じることを言います。大切だということに気づかず(=realize)に、何かに気づく(=notice)ことは可能です。