dependence

noun
de·​pen·​dence | \ di-ˈpen-dən(t)s How to pronounce dependence (audio) \
variants: or less commonly dependance

Definition of dependence

1 : the quality or state of being dependent especially : the quality or state of being influenced or determined by or subject to another
3 : one that is relied on
4a : drug addiction developed a dependence on painkillers

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Examples of dependence in a Sentence

The company was hurt by its dependence on government loans. Our dependence upon foreign oil makes our economy vulnerable. a harmful dependence on foreign oil
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Recent Examples on the Web

America’s shale revolution has broken years of dependence on Middle Eastern oil, to the extent that the International Energy Agency expects the U.S. to become a net energy exporter by 2023. Sarah Mcfarlane And Summer Said, WSJ, "Saudi Arabia Edges Toward Bet on Booming U.S. Energy Sector," 8 Jan. 2019 That's your body building up a tolerance, one component of dependence. Sarah Jacoby, SELF, "Bella Hadid’s New Year’s Resolution Is to Give Up Her JUUL: 'So Far So Good!'," 8 Jan. 2019 This is an interesting posture to take, as NASA has awarded contracts to SpaceX and Boeing in order to end its dependence on Russian Soyuz rockets—presently the only means by which NASA astronauts can get to the International Space Station. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, "NASA concerned about culture of “inappropriateness” at SpaceX," 20 Nov. 2018 Prescription rates have doubled over the past decade in Britain, where health officials in January began a nationwide review of prescription drug dependence and withdrawal. Benedict Carey And Robert Gebeloff, BostonGlobe.com, "Long-term use of antidepressants is surging in the US," 9 Apr. 2018 Spending that much on a concealer once is one thing, but creating a lifelong dependence is an entirely different issue. Glamour, "This $24 BareMinerals Concealer Replaced My Favorite $70 One," 20 Mar. 2019 Airlines still operate in an ultracompetitive market with a high dependence on consumer and business optimism. Jon Sindreu, WSJ, "Airlines Have Cracked the Fare Game—for Now," 13 Feb. 2019 The issue over the president’s tax returns isn’t potential political embarrassment but possible bank fraud, money laundering and financial dependence on Russians. WSJ, "Fight Over Trump’s Tax Returns Continues," 15 Apr. 2019 Seattle was a city that many now fondly remember, with a heavy dependence on Boeing and deep roots in such sectors as small-scale manufacturing, shipbuilding, food processing and railroads. Jon Talton, The Seattle Times, "‘It’s the economy, stupid,’ and the bad luck of George H.W. Bush," 4 Dec. 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for dependence

Last Updated

21 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for dependence

The first known use of dependence was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for dependence

dependence

noun

English Language Learners Definition of dependence

: the state of needing something or someone else for support, help, etc.
: the state of being addicted to alcohol or a drug

dependence

noun
de·​pen·​dence | \ di-ˈpen-dəns How to pronounce dependence (audio) \

Kids Definition of dependence

1 : a condition of being influenced and caused by something else
2 : a state of having to rely on someone or something dependence on charity
4 : addiction to drugs or alcohol

dependence

noun
de·​pen·​dence | \ di-ˈpen-dən(t)s How to pronounce dependence (audio) \

Medical Definition of dependence

1 : the quality or state of being dependent upon or unduly subject to the influence of another
2a : drug addiction

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Comments on dependence

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