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noun \ˈyüs\

Simple Definition of use

  • : the act of using something

  • : the state of being used

  • : a way in which something is or can be used

Full Definition of use

  1. 1 a :  the act or practice of employing something :  employment, application <he made good use of his spare time> b :  the fact or state of being used <a dish in daily use> c :  a method or manner of employing or applying something <gained practice in the use of the camera>

  2. 2 a (1) :  habitual or customary usage (2) :  an individual habit or group custom b :  a liturgical form or observance; especially :  a liturgy having modifications peculiar to a local church or religious order

  3. 3 a :  the privilege or benefit of using something <gave him the use of her car> b :  the ability or power to use something (as a limb or faculty) c :  the legal enjoyment of property that consists in its employment, occupation, exercise, or practice

  4. 4 a :  a particular service or end <put learning to practical use> b :  the quality of being suitable for employment <saving things that might be of use> c :  good 2b <it's no use arguing> d :  the occasion or need to employ <took only what they had use for>

  5. 5 a :  the benefit in law of one or more persons; specifically :  the benefit or profit of property established in one other than the legal possessor b :  a legal arrangement by which such benefits and profits are so established

  6. 6 :  a favorable attitude :  liking <had no use for modern art>

Examples of use

  1. Two players were suspended for illegal drug use.

  2. Doctors have found a new use for the drug.

  3. According to the dictionary, the word has two uses.

Origin of use

Middle English us, from Anglo-French, from Latin usus, from uti to use

First Known Use: 13th century



verb \ˈyüz\

Simple Definition of use

  • : to do something with (an object, machine, person, method, etc.) in order to accomplish a task, do an activity, etc.

  • : to take (something) from a supply in order to function or to do a task

  • : to eat, drink, etc., (something) regularly

Full Definition of use

used play \ˈyüzd, in the phrase “used to” usually ˈyüs(t)\ us·ing play \ˈyü-ziŋ\

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 archaic :  accustom, habituate

  3. 2 :  to put into action or service :  avail oneself of :  employ

  4. 3 :  to consume or take (as liquor or drugs) regularly

  5. 4 :  to carry out a purpose or action by means of :  utilize; also :  manipulate 2b <used him selfishly>

  6. 5 :  to expend or consume by putting to use —often used with up

  7. 6 :  to behave toward :  act with regard to :  treat <used the prisoners cruelly>

  8. 7 :  stand 1d <the house could use a coat of paint>

  9. intransitive verb
  10. 1 —used in the past with to to indicate a former fact or state <we used to go more often> <didn't use to smoke>

  11. 2 :  to take illicit drugs regularly

Examples of use

  1. I need to use the phone when you're done.

  2. The machine is easy to use.

  3. After the accident, she could no longer use her legs.

  4. We use only organic fertilizers on our farm.

  5. They make paper using traditional Japanese methods.

  6. He used his time there well.

  7. Which accountant do you use?

  8. a new kind of light bulb that uses very little electricity

  9. Did you use all the eggs?

  10. Who used the last match?

14th Century

First Known Use of use

14th century

Synonym Discussion of use

use, employ, utilize mean to put into service especially to attain an end. use implies availing oneself of something as a means or instrument to an end <willing to use any means to achieve her ends>. employ suggests the use of a person or thing that is available but idle, inactive, or disengaged <looking for better ways to employ their skills>. utilize may suggest the discovery of a new, profitable, or practical use for something <an old wooden bucket utilized as a planter>.

USE Defined for Kids



verb \ˈyüz\

Definition of use

used \ˈyüzd, in the phrase "used to" usually ˈyüst\us·ing \ˈyü-ziŋ\

  1. 1 :  to put into action or service :  make use of <use tools> <use good English>

  2. 2 —used with to to show a former custom, fact, or state <Grandma said winters used to be harder.>

  3. 3 :  to take into the body <people who use drugs> <I don't use sugar in tea.>

  4. 4 :  to do something by means of <Be sure to use care.>

  5. 5 :  to behave toward :  treat <He used the children kindly.>

us·er noun
use up
  1. :  to make complete use of :  exhaust <We used up the supply of firewood within a week.>

Word Root of use

The Latin word ūtī, meaning “to use,” “to possess,” or “to enjoy,” and its form ūsus give us the roots ut and us. Words from the Latin ūtī have something to do with use. To use is to possess and enjoy. To abuse is to use something incorrectly or unfairly. Anything usual is commonly used by many people. A utensil is a tool that is used for a particular purpose, especially for eating or cooking.



noun \ˈyüs\

Definition of use

  1. 1 :  the act of putting something into action or service <put knowledge to use>

  2. 2 :  the fact or state of being put into action or service <a book in daily use>

  3. 3 :  way of putting into action or service <the proper use of tools>

  4. 4 :  the ability or power to put something into action or service <It's a blessing to have the use of one's legs.>

  5. 5 :  the quality or state of being useful

  6. 6 :  a reason or need to put into action or service <I've no use for it.>

  7. 7 :  liking <We have no use for mean people.>

Seen and Heard

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


February 12, 2016

of, relating to, or suggestive of marble

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