ap·pre·ci·ate | \ ə-ˈprē-shē-ˌāt , -ˈpri- also -ˈprē-sē- \
appreciated; appreciating

Definition of appreciate 

transitive verb

1a : to grasp the nature, worth, quality, or significance of appreciate the difference between right and wrong

b : to value or admire highly She appreciates our work.

c : to judge with heightened perception or understanding : be fully aware of must see it to appreciate it

d : to recognize with gratitude I appreciate your kindness.

2 : to increase the value of

intransitive verb

: to increase in number or value Your investment should appreciate over time.

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Other words from appreciate

appreciator \-ˌā-tər \ noun
appreciatory \-ˈprē-shə-ˌtȯr-ē, -ˈpri-shə- \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for appreciate


cherish, love, prize, treasure, value



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Choose the Right Synonym for appreciate

appreciate, value, prize, treasure, cherish mean to hold in high estimation. appreciate often connotes sufficient understanding to enjoy or admire a thing's excellence. appreciates fine wine value implies rating a thing highly for its intrinsic worth. values our friendship prize implies taking a deep pride in something one possesses. Americans prize their freedom treasure emphasizes jealously safeguarding something considered precious. a treasured memento cherish implies a special love and care for something. cherishes her children above all

synonyms see in addition understand

appreciate, treasure, and cherish mean to think very much of something. appreciate is used when a person understands and enjoys the true worth of something. I can appreciate good music. treasure is often used of something of great sentimental value that is thought of as precious and is kept in a safe place. Parents treasure gifts that their children make. cherish is used when a person loves and cares for something very much and often for a long time. We cherished their friendship for many years.

Meanings of appreciate

Some find it troubling that English is in a constant state of flux, while others take comfort in the in evolving nature of our language. To those in the latter camp, appreciate affords a welcome illustration of how shifts in meaning that were once considered vexatious may become commonly accepted. The grammarian Albert Ayres, writing in the 19th century, said of appreciate that “if any word in the language has cause to complain of ill-treatment, this one has.” Ayres believed the word could only mean what it originally meant, “to set a value on something,” and that its use in a sentence like “I appreciate him highly” was improper. Other self-appointed guardians of the language piled on additional complaints: Edmund Shaftesbury, in his 1897 The Book of Books, held that “Appreciate should not be used for increases in value.” Obviously, we have long since forgotten these quibbles – both senses of appreciate are used regularly, and nobody gives the matter a second thought.

Examples of appreciate in a Sentence

Given that scarcity and the anticipated growth of high-end wine consumption in the United States, they believe the value of quality vineyards will appreciate significantly. —Daniel Sogg, Wine Spectator, 15 June 2008 The true carnivores in your life will appreciate this gloriously formidable slab of USDA prime meat. Is it worth the equally hefty price? Absolutely. Lobel's dry ages it for six weeks and always ships it fresh-no frozen mystery bricks here-and regardless of how you like your steak done, this porterhouse cooks up beautifully, retains its juices, and delivers rich, buttery flavor. —Kate Fox, Saveur, December 2006 As a married, working woman in her mid-30s who's planning on eventually having children, I truly appreciated reading "Mommy Madness." Over the years, I have observed peers with their children, and have inquired about what parenthood is really like. —Amy Booth, Newsweek, 7 Mar. 2005 I think often of the quiet rigor of my former life. I did not even fully appreciate how much it costs to rent an apartment on the open market. —Martha Southgate, The Fall of Rome, 2002 The company strives to make its employees feel appreciated. Living in the city has taught me to appreciate the differences between people. Those who appreciate fine wine will enjoy reading the restaurant's wine list. I really appreciated the information you gave me. Your help the other day was greatly appreciated. The tiny creature contributes to its ecosystem in ways we are only just beginning to appreciate. I don't think you appreciate the complexity of the situation. I appreciate what the artist is trying to do, but I think the painting fails to do it.
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Recent Examples on the Web

The Navy forwarded a touching letter with coordinates of the ship at the time of burial, details that my father would’ve appreciated. Liz Arnold, Longreads, "Making Peace with the Site of a Suicide," 11 July 2018 Their personal leadership in that effort will be indispensable and deeply appreciated. Steven P. Dinkin,, "The passed-over interim and the outside hire," 10 June 2018 One of the best things about homeownership is that your investment typically appreciates over time. Kenya Burrell-vanwormer, Houston Chronicle, "Realtor View: Is your home really ready to sell?," 10 June 2018 This is just another manifestation of global change, and actually something that non-scientists can appreciate because these clouds are a brilliant and obvious reminder of these changes. Katie Camero,, "Once-rare cloud is now more common, and new study says climate change is to blame," 13 July 2018 The pure excitement and joy when Limbani sees our close friends can only be appreciated if watched and heard. Caitlyn Richard, Fox News, "Chimp reunites with human foster parents in heartwarming viral video," 3 July 2018 Johnson also checks that important box Buchanan can appreciate. J. Michael, Indianapolis Star, "Hard-working, self-made Alize Johnson banks on versatility, rebounding with Pacers," 1 July 2018 The excitement now is in appreciating the myriad functions of what are, in effect, minute chemical factories. Helen Bynum, WSJ, "‘Microbia’ Review: The Many Tiny Worlds Among Us," 12 July 2018 To put it mildly, the history of heavily militarized European states has not been good for those who appreciate peace. Jonathan Allen /, NBC News, "Trump's NATO trip: In like a lion, out like a lamb," 12 July 2018

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

1653, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for appreciate

Late Latin appretiatus, past participle of appretiare, from Latin ad- + pretium price — more at price

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Phrases Related to appreciate

would appreciate it

Statistics for appreciate

Last Updated

12 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for appreciate

The first known use of appreciate was in 1653

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More Definitions for appreciate



English Language Learners Definition of appreciate

: to understand the worth or importance of (something or someone) : to admire and value (something or someone)

: to be grateful for (something)

—used to make a polite request


ap·pre·ci·ate | \ ə-ˈprē-shē-ˌāt \
appreciated; appreciating

Kids Definition of appreciate

1 : to be grateful for We appreciate your help.

2 : to admire greatly and with understanding He appreciates poetry.

3 : to be fully aware of I appreciate how important this is.

4 : to increase in number or value Your investment should appreciate in time.


ap·pre·ci·ate | \ ə-ˈprē-shē-ˌāt, -ˈpri-, -sē- \
appreciated; appreciating

Legal Definition of appreciate 

transitive verb

1 : to judge or understand the significance of incapable of appreciating the difference between right and wrong —B. N. Cardozo

2 : to raise the market value of — compare depreciate

intransitive verb

: to rise in market value

Other words from appreciate

appreciation \ə-ˌprē-shē-ˈā-shən, -ˌpri-, -sē- \ noun

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Comments on appreciate

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the setting in which something occurs

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