ad·​here | \ ad-ˈhir How to pronounce adhere (audio) , əd- \
adhered; adhering

Definition of adhere

intransitive verb

1 : to hold fast or stick by or as if by gluing, suction, grasping, or fusing The stamp failed to adhere to the envelope.
2 : to give support or maintain loyalty adhere to traditional values
3 : to bind oneself to observance adhere to the rules

transitive verb

: to cause to stick fast The paper had been adhered to the wall.

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Synonyms for adhere


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Choose the Right Synonym for adhere

stick, adhere, cohere, cling, cleave mean to become closely attached. stick implies attachment by affixing or by being glued together. couldn't get the label to stick adhere is often interchangeable with stick but sometimes implies a growing together. antibodies adhering to a virus cohere suggests a sticking together of parts so that they form a unified mass. eggs will make the mixture cohere cling implies attachment by hanging on with arms or tendrils. clinging to a capsized boat cleave stresses strength of attachment. the wet shirt cleaved to his back

Examples of adhere in a Sentence

The stamp failed to adhere. everyone started calling her “Cookie” when she was little and the name adhered
Recent Examples on the Web The venue's large indoor spaces offers officials the ability to install hundreds of voting machines and to adhere the CDC guidelines. Chris Bumbaca, USA TODAY, "Atlanta Hawks to transform State Farm Arena into massive voting station for 2020 elections," 30 June 2020 Messianiac Jews follow Jewish law but also adhere to some Christian beliefs, such as Jesus being the Messiah. Mica Soellner, Washington Examiner, "Israel pulls plug on evangelical Christian network channel, citing its appeal to Jews," 29 June 2020 The question today, however, is not whether Whole Woman’s Health was right or wrong, but whether to adhere to it in deciding the present case. Adam Liptak,, "Supreme court strikes down Louisiana abortion law," 29 June 2020 The pandemic has taken a big toll on retailers of all stripes as stay-at-home orders forced nonessential businesses to suspend operations to adhere to social distancing protocols. Jacob Bogage, Washington Post, "Microsoft will close nearly all of its retail stores," 26 June 2020 Attendance is capped to adhere to social-distancing rules, while seats will be regularly sanitized and cash payments disallowed. Bloomberg Wire, Dallas News, "Cinemark won’t be able to show one of the few new movies out right now," 26 June 2020 Once in the park, guests will be required to wear masks, adhere to social distancing guidelines while waiting in line, encouraged to wash hands often, and use non-cash options for paying for food and souvenirs. Susan Glaser, cleveland, "Cedar Point, Kings Island, Kennywood, Waldameer prepare to reopen, with adjustments: Amusement park guide 2020," 25 June 2020 In addition to consistent testing, players will be expected to adhere to strict social distancing when not playing as well as wear masks in any situation outside their homes. Briar Napier, The Arizona Republic, "4 Phoenix Rising FC players test positive for COVID-19," 24 June 2020 Charles said sales staffers at Adamson Ford wear masks and adhere to social distancing guidelines. William Thornton |, al, "Alabama’s car dealers see demand picking back up after lockdown," 17 June 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'adhere.' 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 adhere

15th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 2

History and Etymology for adhere

borrowed from Middle French & Latin; Middle French adhérer, going back to Old French ahérer, borrowed from Latin adhaerēre "to cling, stick (to), attach oneself, keep close (to a person)," from ad- ad- + haerēre "to be closely attached, stick" — more at hesitate

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Time Traveler for adhere

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for adhere

Last Updated

3 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Adhere.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 8 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for adhere


How to pronounce adhere (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of adhere

: to stick to something : to attach firmly to something


ad·​here | \ ad-ˈhir How to pronounce adhere (audio) \
adhered; adhering

Kids Definition of adhere

1 : to stick tight : cling The stamps adhered to the envelope.
2 : to act in the way that is required by adhere to the rules


ad·​here | \ ad-ˈhi(ə)r, əd- How to pronounce adhere (audio) \
adhered; adhering

Medical Definition of adhere

intransitive verb

1 : to hold fast or stick by or as if by gluing, suction, grasping, or fusing a gauze bandage adhering to the wound
2 : to become joined (as in pathological adhesion) the lung sometimes adheres to the pleura

transitive verb

: to cause to stick fast

Other Words from adhere

adherence \ -​ˈhir-​ən(t)s How to pronounce adherence (audio) \ noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on adhere

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for adhere

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with adhere

Spanish Central: Translation of adhere

Nglish: Translation of adhere for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of adhere for Arabic Speakers

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