\ ˈbild How to pronounce build (audio) \
built\ ˈbilt How to pronounce build (audio) \; building

Definition of build

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to form by ordering and uniting materials by gradual means into a composite whole : construct birds building a nest build new hospitals and schools the boat her father built
2 : to cause to be constructed a contractor who has built hundreds of homes
3 : to develop according to a systematic plan, by a definite process, or on a particular base building a legal case against her built the organization from the ground up
4 : increase, enlarge helps build muscle build support for their candidate building friendships

intransitive verb

1 : to engage in building
2a : to progress toward a peak (as of intensity) build to a climax
b : to develop in extent a crowd building
build a fire under
: to stimulate to vigorous action
build into
: to make an integral part of build quality into the product
build on
: to use as a foundation building on past experience


plural builds

Definition of build (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : form or mode of structure : make the boxy build of the car especially : bodily conformation of a person or animal a man of stocky build
2 : a version or iteration of a product or component We worked with several builds of the beta code, which was in itself instructive. Things that worked perfectly in one version stopped working at all in the next release.— Bill Machrone et al.

Examples of build in a Sentence

Verb The bridge was built in the 1890s. The planes were built in Germany. The organization helps build houses for poor families. A family of birds has built a nest on our roof. She started building a fire in the fireplace. He built a model airplane from a kit. You will need permission to build on your property. They are building a legal case against the tobacco industry. scientists building theories about how the universe began At college, you'll build friendships that will last a lifetime. Noun He is strong and muscular in build. a man of average build See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb One trend with the highest impact is an opportunity to build solid positioning and brand authority to stand out from the competition in real time by publishing articles and videos and optimizing your profile and Sales Navigator strategy. Expert Panel®, Forbes, 10 Aug. 2022 Initial plans to build a lithium battery factory there have also been shelved. Dalton Bennett, Washington Post, 10 Aug. 2022 For Angel City, which has sold out the last two NWSL games at its 22,000-seat stadium, the games with Tigres are part of an effort to build both the club and its fan base. Kevin Baxter, Los Angeles Times, 9 Aug. 2022 Intel said the bill’s passage would facilitate their plans to build a $20 billion facility in New Albany, near Columbus. Sabrina Eaton, cleveland, 9 Aug. 2022 It’s the second time Metazoa dropped plans to build a brewery north of their flagship spot. John Tuohy, The Indianapolis Star, 9 Aug. 2022 Other states have used federal pandemic relief to help colleges build summer programs. Collin Binkley, The Christian Science Monitor, 9 Aug. 2022 International sanctions will also reduce Russia’s ability to build new planes and missiles. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, 8 Aug. 2022 The need to build the dam not only will delay construction of the pump station and swell its cost from $110 million to $130 million. David Garrick, San Diego Union-Tribune, 8 Aug. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The Tab A8 feels great to handle, thanks to a largely metal build and uniform design. Harry Rabinowitz, Popular Mechanics, 8 Aug. 2022 The Hoover WindTunnel Air Steerable Upright Vacuum is super popular among Amazon shoppers thanks to its impressive suction power, lightweight build, and easy-to-steer head. Sanah Faroke, Peoplemag, 3 Aug. 2022 Forget the slight build and quiet, understated public image of Padres Chairman and principal owner Peter Seidler. Bryce Millercolumnist, San Diego Union-Tribune, 2 Aug. 2022 Testers felt the hose had both a sturdy build and a stylish appearance. Jamie Weissman, Better Homes & Gardens, 1 Aug. 2022 This model can do nearly everything just as well as Samsung's Galaxy Tab S8, with its 2K LCD display, slim build, and decently powerful MediaTek chip. Julian Chokkattu, Wired, 13 July 2022 As a teenager, the 6-foot-1-inch, 235-pound first baseman was drawn to Indiana University slugger Kyle Schwarber, a player whose build and attitude in some ways reflected his own. Globe Staff,, 30 June 2022 Police described the suspect as a male with a dark complexion, athletic build and short dark hair. Fox News, 22 May 2022 At 6-5, 245 pounds, the redshirt freshman has the physical build of a stereotypical tight end and a championship pedigree second to none. Evan Dudley, al, 14 July 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of build


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1


1667, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for build

Verb and Noun

Middle English bilden, from Old English byldan; akin to Old English būan to dwell — more at bower

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Time Traveler for build

Time Traveler

The first known use of build was before the 12th century

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Last Updated

13 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Build.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 14 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for build


\ ˈbild How to pronounce build (audio) \
built\ ˈbilt \; building

Kids Definition of build

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to make by putting together parts or materials
2 : to produce or create gradually by effort It takes time to build a winning team.
3 : to grow or increase to a high point or level Excitement was building.



Kids Definition of build (Entry 2 of 2)

: the shape and size of a person's or animal's body The boy has a slender build.

Choose the Right Synonym for build


build, construct, and erect mean to make a structure. build is used for putting together several parts or materials to form something. Workers are building the house. construct is used for the designing of something and the process of fitting its parts together. Engineers constructed a system of dams across the river. erect is used for the idea of building something that stands up. The tower was erected many years ago.

More from Merriam-Webster on build

Nglish: Translation of build for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of build for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about build


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