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I have read the following sentence:

I took note of the telephone number.

However, Cambridge dictionary says that "to take note of something" means "to give attention to something, especially because it is important". Example: You should take careful note of what she tells you because she knows their strategy well.

1) Based on that definition, my understanding is that "to take note of a telephone number" means "to pay attention to a telephone number", not necessarily to write it down. Is that right or can it also mean the latter, depending on the context?

2) If I meant that I wrote the telephone number down, I know I could use "to write down". Could I also use "to make a note of a telephone number" and "to note a telephone number" ? AFAIK "to make a note of sth", "to note sth" and "to write down sth" are synonyms..

  • to note and make a note of something are not synonymous. – Lambie Dec 5 '19 at 18:46
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Based on that definition, my understanding is that "to take note of a telephone number" means "to pay attention to a telephone number", not necessarily to write it down.

Yes that is correct. For example maybe you see a phone number and "take note of" or notice that it has the same area code as your own, or notice that it is your sister's phone number.

In most contexts I would assume "taking note of a phone number" would not mean writing it down. However, it could possibly mean they wrote it. For example, if someone is telling you how they took notes for* a meeting and says "I also took note of a phone number" I'd assume they mean they wrote it down. '

If I meant that I wrote the telephone number down,

Some other options that make it clear you wrote it down are "jotted down the number", "copied the number", "took down the number", or "noted down the number".

"to make a note of sth", "to note sth" and "to write down sth" are synonyms..

They are not.

  • "To make a note" usually means "did something to remember something", but it could be a literal transcription, a scribble on a paper to remind you, a calendar notification on your phone, or even just a "mental note".

  • "to note" usually doesn't mean you wrote something down. Just that you noticed it or paid special attention to it.

  • "to write down" usually means you literally wrote down what was said.

    *"taking notes for something" basically always means you are writing (or typing) up notes, usually in a meeting or classroom setting.

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