con·​trib·​ute | \ kən-ˈtri-byət How to pronounce contribute (audio) , -(ˌ)byüt also and especially before -​ed or -​ing -ˈtri-bət; chiefly British also ˈkän-trə-ˌbyüt\
contributed; contributing

Definition of contribute

transitive verb

1 : to give or supply in common with others contribute money to a cause
2 : to supply (something, such as an article) for a publication He contributed several poems to the magazine.

intransitive verb

1a : to give a part to a common fund or store contribute to a fund-raising campaign
b : to play a significant part in bringing about an end or result Many players have contributed to the team's success.
2 : to submit articles to a publication

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Synonyms for contribute


chip in, kick in, pitch in

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Examples of contribute in a Sentence

The volunteers contributed their time towards cleaning up the city. We're trying to raise money for a new school, and we're hoping that everyone will contribute. He did not contribute to the project. In order for the team to win, everyone has to contribute. He contributed many poems to the magazine. Ten scientists contributed to the special edition of the journal.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Fox News' Tyler Olson and the Associated Press contributed to this report. Fox News, "Hunt for the 'Tie-dyed bandit': FBI offering $10,000 reward for information on suspected bank robber," 8 Aug. 2019 Peter Abraham of the Globe staff contributed to this report. Alex Speier,, "Alex Cora ponders a shuffling of Red Sox rotation," 7 Aug. 2019 Mary Beth Sheridan contributed to this report from Mexico City. Washington Post, "Mexico might try to put the El Paso shooter on trial. The U.S. is unlikely to hand him over.," 7 Aug. 2019 Staff writers Nicole Hensley, Julian Gill and Michelle Iracheta contributed to this report. Jay R. Jordan, Houston Chronicle, "Judge orders $45K bond for man who faces new charge in Maleah Davis case," 7 Aug. 2019 Times staff writer Stephen Battaglio contributed to this report. Los Angeles Times, "The Emmys won’t have a host this year. Thanks, Oscars," 7 Aug. 2019 The Washington Post’s Arelis Hernandez in Dayton contributed to this report. John Wagner, Anchorage Daily News, "Trump stays largely out of public view during Dayton visit; El Paso awaits his arrival," 7 Aug. 2019 That, in turn, contributed to electing Republicans and helped McConnell hold on to his GOP majority in the Senate. NBC News, "McConnell has a long history of opposing gun legislation in the wake of tragedies," 7 Aug. 2019 Associated Press writers Julie Carr Smyth and Kantele Franko in Columbus, Amanda Seitz in Chicago and Robert Bumsted in Dayton contributed. John Seewer, The Denver Post, "Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine urges gun sale background checks after shooting," 6 Aug. 2019

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

1530, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for contribute

Latin contributus, past participle of contribuere, from com- + tribuere to grant — more at tribute

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Statistics for contribute

Last Updated

10 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for contribute

The first known use of contribute was in 1530

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More Definitions for contribute



English Language Learners Definition of contribute

: to give (something, such as money, goods, or time) to help a person, group, cause, or organization
: to help to cause something to happen
: to write (something, such as a story, poem, or essay) for a magazine


con·​trib·​ute | \ kən-ˈtri-byət How to pronounce contribute (audio) , -byüt\
contributed; contributing

Kids Definition of contribute

1 : to give along with others
2 : to have a share in something You all contributed to the success of the project.
3 : to supply (as an article) for publication especially in a magazine

Other Words from contribute

contributor \ kən-​ˈtri-​byə-​tər \ noun


contributed; contributing

Legal Definition of contribute

transitive verb

: to make a contribution of

intransitive verb

: to make a contribution

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Comments on contribute

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


of or relating to the heavens

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