Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Medical
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

enforce

play
verb en·force \in-ˈfȯrs, en-\

Simple Definition of enforce

  • : to make (a law, rule, etc.) active or effective : to make sure that people do what is required by (a law, rule, etc.)

  • : to make (something) happen : to force or cause (something)

Full Definition of enforce

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to give force to :  strengthen

  3. 2 :  to urge with energy <enforce arguments>

  4. 3 :  constrain, compel <enforce obedience>

  5. 4 obsolete :  to effect or gain by force

  6. 5 :  to carry out effectively <enforce laws>

en·force·abil·i·ty play \-ˌfȯr-sə-ˈbi-lə-tē\ noun
en·force·able play \-ˈfȯr-sə-bəl\ adjective
en·force·ment play \-ˈfȯr-smənt\ noun

Examples of enforce

  1. Police will be enforcing the parking ban.

  2. <the duty of the police is to enforce the law>



Origin of enforce

Middle English, from Anglo-French enforcer, from en- + force force


First Known Use: 14th century



ENFORCE Defined for Kids

enforce

play
verb en·force \in-ˈfȯrs\

Definition of enforce

en·forceden·forc·ing

  1. 1 :  to make happen <He tried to enforce cooperation.>

  2. 2 :  to carry out or make effective <enforce a law>

en·force·ment \–mənt\ noun




Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up enforce? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

February 8, 2016

to clear from accusation or blame

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

image1037863653

Which of the following refers to thin, bending ice, or to the act of running over such ice?

duvet kittly-benders spindrift pince-nez
Name That Thing

10 quick questions: hear them, spell them, and see how your skills compare to the crowd.

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ