apparatus

noun

ap·​pa·​ra·​tus ˌa-pə-ˈra-təs How to pronounce apparatus (audio) -ˈrā- How to pronounce apparatus (audio)
plural apparatuses or apparatus
1
a
: a set of materials or equipment designed for a particular use
b
: a group of anatomical or cytological parts functioning together
mitotic apparatus
c
: an instrument or appliance designed for a specific operation
an apparatus for measuring vision
2
: the functional processes by means of which a systematized activity is carried out
the apparatus of society
: such as
a
: the machinery of government
b
: the organization of a political party or an underground movement

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web But the Iranian security apparatus hasn’t always been so sophisticated in quashing uprisings, analysts say. Adam Pourahmadi, CNN, 14 Nov. 2022 Evin Prison occupies a special place both within the regime’s security apparatus and in the political imagination of many Iranians, which is why this disturbance caught people’s attention. Kian Tajbakhsh, The Atlantic, 1 Nov. 2022 That security apparatus remains brutally lethal, so far killing at least 230 people and injuring thousands. Karl Vick, Time, 28 Oct. 2022 That security apparatus doesn’t always extend to families when the member isn’t at home, however, making spouses like Paul Pelosi more vulnerable. Mary Clare Jalonick, BostonGlobe.com, 28 Oct. 2022 Finally, the resolution passed by the House to create the panel instructed it to explore how the nation’s security apparatus got blindsided by the assault on the Capitol and to recommend ways to prevent such violence in the future. Los Angeles Times, 1 Sep. 2022 To combat fresh outbreaks of Covid-19 in outlying areas like Xinjiang and Tibet, Chinese authorities are drawing on a security apparatus previously used to quell dissent against authorities in Beijing. Bloomberg.com, 15 Aug. 2022 Lee played a key role in designing Hong Kong’s new security apparatus and has used it aggressively to prosecute citizens on charges of terrorism and succession, shutter newspapers, and punish protestors. Clay Chandler, Fortune, 30 June 2022 The plan is to reorganize the school district's security apparatus, calling for the hiring of new managers to oversee school safety and certification and training for security guards. Neal Earley, Arkansas Online, 18 June 2022 See More

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

Word History

Etymology

borrowed from Latin apparātus "act of preparing, display, trappings, equipment," from apparāre "to make ready, make preparations for" (from ad- ad- + parāre "to supply, provide, make ready") + -tus, suffix of verbal nouns — more at pare

First Known Use

circa 1628, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of apparatus was circa 1628

Dictionary Entries Near apparatus

Cite this Entry

“Apparatus.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/apparatus. Accessed 1 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition

apparatus

noun

ap·​pa·​ra·​tus ˌap-ə-ˈrat-əs How to pronounce apparatus (audio) -ˈrāt- How to pronounce apparatus (audio)
plural apparatuses or apparatus
1
: the equipment or material for a particular use or job
laboratory apparatus
2
: a complicated instrument or device

Medical Definition

apparatus

noun

ap·​pa·​ra·​tus ˌap-ə-ˈrat-əs How to pronounce apparatus (audio) -ˈrāt- How to pronounce apparatus (audio)
plural apparatuses or apparatus
: a group of anatomical and cytological parts having a common function
the respiratory apparatus
see golgi apparatus

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