com·​ply | \ kəm-ˈplī How to pronounce comply (audio) \
complied; complying

Definition of comply

intransitive verb

1 : to conform, submit, or adapt (as to a regulation or to another's wishes) as required or requested comply with federal law the devices comply with industry standards
2 obsolete : to be ceremoniously courteous

Examples of comply in a Sentence

I asked the waitress to refill my coffee cup and she happily complied. There will be penalties against individuals who fail to comply.
Recent Examples on the Web Wolff on Tuesday urged San Antonio area residents to comply with new, stricter orders to stay at home except to take care of essential tasks in efforts to slow the spread of the potentially deadly novel coronavirus. Diego Mendoza-moyers,, "San Antonio looking to retrain 15,000 unemployed workers," 23 May 2020 Moments before he was escorted out after refusing to comply, Bailey voted against the face-covering requirement. USA TODAY, "Casinos, churches, contact tracing: News from around our 50 states," 22 May 2020 The department also isn’t sure which recreation facilities will be able to open and which will remain closed for the season, but the Heritage Senior Center will stay closed to comply with current government guidelines. Hunter Johnson, Dallas News, "Irving aquatic and recreation centers, libraries, art center outline plans for reopening," 22 May 2020 Water parks throughout the Valley have announced their 2020 opening plans with modifications to comply with Gov. Doug Ducey's guidelines for how pools can safely operate during the new coronavirus pandemic. Kimi Robinson, azcentral, "Phoenix water parks are opening for summer. Here are their coronavirus safety precautions," 21 May 2020 Outdoor venues or those not assigned a normal occupancy load by the fire marshal shall limit occupancy as required to comply with the social distancing requirements of this paragraph. Facial coverings. Mary Colurso |, al, "Which entertainment venues can open this weekend in Alabama?," 21 May 2020 Police said Vallow failed to comply with a court order to produce her children to authorities by Jan. 30. NBC News, "Video shows Lori Vallow's former husband telling police she 'lost her mind'," 20 May 2020 When restaurants and schools closed to comply with social distancing orders, markets disappeared for farmers and processors. Stephanie Hanes, The Christian Science Monitor, "Where’s the beef? Pandemic exposes cracks in US food system.," 19 May 2020 They are now being repurposed to meet a surge in demand from employers eager to comply with government guidelines on social... Parmy Olson, WSJ, "Don’t Stand So Close to Me: AI Cameras Police Social Distancing at Work," 14 May 2020

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

1602, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for comply

Italian complire, from Spanish cumplir to complete, perform what is due, be courteous, modification of Latin complēre to complete

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Time Traveler for comply

Time Traveler

The first known use of comply was in 1602

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Statistics for comply

Last Updated

26 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Comply.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 May. 2020.

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How to pronounce comply (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of comply

: to do what you have been asked or ordered to do


com·​ply | \ kəm-ˈplī How to pronounce comply (audio) \
complied; complying

Kids Definition of comply

: to act in agreement with another's wishes or in obedience to a rule Everyone complied with the request.

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Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for comply

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with comply

Spanish Central: Translation of comply

Nglish: Translation of comply for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of comply for Arabic Speakers

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