acquire

verb
ac·​quire | \ ə-ˈkwī(-ə)r How to pronounce acquire (audio) \
acquired; acquiring

Definition of acquire

transitive verb

1 : to get as one's own:
a : to come into possession or control of often by unspecified means acquire property The team acquired three new players this year.
b : to come to have as a new or added characteristic, trait, or ability (as by sustained effort or natural selection) acquire fluency in French bacteria that acquire tolerance to antibiotics
2 : to locate and hold (a desired object) in a detector acquire a target by radar

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Synonyms & Antonyms for acquire

Synonyms

Antonyms

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Examples of acquire in a Sentence

The two ships were acquired by the navy after the war. The team acquired three new players this year. The old word has acquired a new meaning. This apparently minor event has acquired increasing significance in recent weeks. He is studying the way that language is acquired by children.
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Recent Examples on the Web Another team would have had to give up a second-round pick plus a free agent contract to acquire Jackson, and the Patriots would have had the right to match the contract. BostonGlobe.com, "Cornerback J.C. Jackson signs his tender to remain with Patriots," 16 Apr. 2021 Any deal to acquire Toshiba would likely value the company at more than $20 billion. Kosaku Narioka, WSJ, "Toshiba CEO Nobuaki Kurumatani Steps Down Under Pressure From Shareholders," 14 Apr. 2021 In 2018, the History Connection took the club to court in a bid to acquire the lease via eminent domain. Sarah Bahr, New York Times, "A Push to Move the Golf Course Atop a Native American ‘Stonehenge’," 12 Apr. 2021 Last month, NetApp closed a deal to acquire Spot, a leader in compute management, and cost optimization for public clouds. Trefis Team, Forbes, "Intel, Cisco: Why Value Tech Stocks Hit The Sweet Spot In The Current Market," 9 Apr. 2021 Yup, that’s right: Netflix just closed a huge deal to acquire the next movies in the Knives Out universe. Paulina Jayne Isaac, Glamour, "Two Knives Out Sequels Are Coming to Netflix," 1 Apr. 2021 At the time of the attempt to acquire McCarron, Cleveland had an 0-8 record with rookie DeShone Kizer starting seven games and Kevin Hogan making his only NFL start at quarterback. Mark Inabinett | Minabinett@al.com, al, "Botched AJ McCarron trade ‘shocked’ Hue Jackson," 30 Mar. 2021 In fact, the current backup shortstop is the starting center fielder, Mauricio Dubon, and president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi expressed an urgency to acquire another shortstop for depth purposes. John Shea, San Francisco Chronicle, "Who among Posey, Crawford and Belt could return to Giants in 2022?," 30 Mar. 2021 The trade with Atlanta to acquire Rondo, 35, left the Clippers with two open roster spots and a void in scoring. Andrew Greif, Los Angeles Times, "Clippers’ addition of Rajon Rondo gives them a needed ‘orchestrator,’ team president says," 27 Mar. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'acquire.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of acquire

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for acquire

borrowed from Latin acquīrere, from ad- ad- + quaerere "to seek, gain, obtain, enquire"; replacing earlier aquere, going back to Middle English aqweren, borrowed from Anglo-French acquerre, going back to Vulgar Latin *acquaerere, restructuring (by restoring the vocalism of quaerere) of acquīrere — more at quest entry 1

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Time Traveler for acquire

Time Traveler

The first known use of acquire was in the 15th century

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Statistics for acquire

Last Updated

19 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Acquire.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/acquire. Accessed 20 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for acquire

acquire

verb

English Language Learners Definition of acquire

formal : to get (something) : to come to own (something) : to come to have (something)
: to gain (a new skill, ability, etc.) usually by your own effort

acquire

verb
ac·​quire | \ ə-ˈkwīr How to pronounce acquire (audio) \
acquired; acquiring

Kids Definition of acquire

: to get especially through effort : gain acquire a skill

acquire

transitive verb
ac·​quire | \ ə-ˈkwī(ə)r How to pronounce acquire (audio) \
acquired; acquiring

Medical Definition of acquire

: to come to have as a new or additional characteristic, trait, or ability (as by sustained effort, by mutation, or through environmental forces) a cognitive system…that is acquired in early childhood— Noam Chomsky bacteria that acquire tolerance to antibiotics insects that acquire resistance to insecticides

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acquire

transitive verb
ac·​quire | \ ə-ˈkwīr How to pronounce acquire (audio) \
acquired; acquiring

Legal Definition of acquire

: to come into possession, ownership, or control of : obtain as one's own the target's directors don't want the company to be acquired— R. C. Clark the court acquired jurisdiction

Other Words from acquire

acquirer also acquiror \ ə-​ˈkwīr-​ər \ noun

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Comments on acquire

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