verb con·trib·ute \ kən-ˈtri-byət , -(ˌ)byüt also and especially before -ed or -ing -ˈtri-bət ; chiefly British also ˈkän-trə-ˌbyüt \
Updated on: 10 Mar 2018

Definition of contribute

contributed; contributing
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.
1 a : 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


play \kən-ˈtri-byə-tər, -bə-, -ˌbyü-\ noun

Examples of contribute in a Sentence

  1. The volunteers contributed their time towards cleaning up the city.

  2. We're trying to raise money for a new school, and we're hoping that everyone will contribute.

  3. He did not contribute to the project.

  4. In order for the team to win, everyone has to contribute.

  5. He contributed many poems to the magazine.

  6. Ten scientists contributed to the special edition of the journal.

Recent Examples of contribute from the Web

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.

Origin and Etymology of contribute

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

CONTRIBUTE Defined for English Language Learners


Definition of contribute for English Language Learners

  • : 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

CONTRIBUTE Defined for Kids


verb con·trib·ute \ kən-ˈtri-byət , -byüt \

Definition of contribute for Students

contributed; contributing
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


\kən-ˈtri-byə-tər\ noun

Law Dictionary


verb con·trib·ute

legal Definition of contribute

contributed; contributing
: to make a contribution of
: to make a contribution

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