\ə-ˈmend \
amended; amending; amends

Definition of amend 

transitive verb

1 : to put right especially : to make emendations in (something, such as a text) amended the manuscript

2a : to change or modify (something) for the better : improve amend the situation

b : to alter especially in phraseology especially : to alter formally by modification, deletion, or addition amend a constitution

intransitive verb

: to reform oneself

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Other Words from amend

amendable \-ˈmen-də-bəl \ adjective
amender noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for amend


ameliorate, better, enhance, enrich, help, improve, meliorate, perfect, refine, upgrade



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Choose the Right Synonym for amend

correct, rectify, emend, remedy, redress, amend, reform, revise mean to make right what is wrong. correct implies taking action to remove errors, faults, deviations, defects. correct your spelling rectify implies a more essential changing to make something right, just, or properly controlled or directed. rectify a misguided policy emend specifically implies correction of a text or manuscript. emend a text remedy implies removing or making harmless a cause of trouble, harm, or evil. set out to remedy the evils of the world redress implies making compensation or reparation for an unfairness, injustice, or imbalance. redress past social injustices amend, reform, revise imply an improving by making corrective changes, amend usually suggesting slight changes amend a law , reform implying drastic change plans to reform the court system , and revise suggesting a careful examination of something and the making of necessary changes. revise the schedule

Amend vs. Emend

The question of whether to use amend or emend is a vexing one for many people, complicated by the fact that the words sound quite similar and have meanings that overlap to a considerable degree. Both words can be used with the meanings “to improve” or “to correct,” but there are subtle differences. Emend is most often used in connection with changes to some form of written material, such as a text or manuscript; while such documents may also be described as amended, amend can apply to improvements or corrections made to things other than writing, as in “he amended his behavior.” The confusion is compounded by the fact that one of the most frequently encountered uses of amend is in reference to a document: the Constitution of the United States.

Examples of amend in a Sentence

The country's constitution was amended to allow women to vote. They voted to amend the law in 1920. He tried to amend the situation by apologizing to me.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Yad Vashem also said Poland’s amended Holocaust speech law, while no longer allowing prison as a criminal penalty, still provides for possible civil penalties that could impede Holocaust research. Washington Post, "Joint statement on Holocaust fuels anger it was meant to end," 6 July 2018 The changes amend a campus plan first put together in 2004 that encompasses an almost 46-acre area mainly bordered by Gladstone Avenue, Evanslawn Avenue, Marseillaise Place and Prairie Street — a plan largely accomplished. Steve Lord, Aurora Beacon-News, "City set to approve new plans for Aurora University, West Aurora Plaza," 21 June 2018 In 2017, the Kansas Legislature amended the law to enable people to appeal when the petition for a grand jury is rejected, Davis said. Bryan Lowry And Steve Vockrodt, kansascity, "Kobach can be investigated by citizen grand jury, Kansas Court of Appeals rules," 8 June 2018 That’s because National Amusements had a day earlier amended CBS’s bylaws to say the dilution of voting power could only take place with 90% of board members’ approval. Alan Murray, Fortune, "China Tactics, CBS Control, PayPal and iZettle: CEO Daily for May 18, 2018," 18 May 2018 Last September, that ban was amended and now affects only boys basketball, making the track teams eligible for this week’s sectional meets. Dave Melton, Post-Tribune, "Bowman sprinters Melody Jones and Jessica Palmer ready for delayed postseason debut," 14 May 2018 Issue 1 amends the Ohio Constitution by putting rules in place, where none exist now, aimed at creating districts that make geographic sense - rather than districts designed solely with political gain in mind. Rich Exner,, "Ohio votes to reform congressional redistricting; Issue 1 could end gerrymandering," 8 May 2018 Briceson Carter, 33, pleaded guilty to manslaughter and other amended charges in exchange for a maximum sentence of 40 years in prison, according to District Attorney Leon Cannizzaro's office. Heather Nolan,, "Man halts murder trial in middle of proceedings to take plea deal," 25 Apr. 2018 The Republican budget released Friday amended that legislation to require an extra layer of approval. Jenna Carlesso, Courant Community, "Republicans Frustrated By Bailout Propose Funding Cuts For Hartford," 20 Apr. 2018

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

13th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for amend

Middle English, from Anglo-French amender, modification of Latin emendare, from e, ex out + menda fault; akin to Latin mendax lying, mendicus beggar, and perhaps to Sanskrit mindā physical defect

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Phrases Related to amend

make amends

Statistics for amend

Last Updated

11 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for amend

The first known use of amend was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for amend



English Language Learners Definition of amend

: to change some of the words and often the meaning of (a law, document, etc.)

: to change and improve (something, such as a mistake or bad situation)


\ə-ˈmend \
amended; amending

Kids Definition of amend

1 : to change for the better : improve He tried to amend the situation by apologizing.

2 : to change the wording or meaning of : alter Congress voted to amend the law.

Legal Definition of amend 

1 : to change or modify for the better

2 : to alter especially in the wording especially : to alter formally by modification, deletion, or addition amended the statute amend the complaint to cure the defect

Other Words from amend

amendable adjective

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Comments on amend

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


to reject or criticize sharply

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