em·​brace | \ im-ˈbrās How to pronounce embrace (audio) \
embraced; embracing

Definition of embrace

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to clasp in the arms : hug
3a : to take up especially readily or gladly embrace a cause
b : to avail oneself of : welcome embraced the opportunity to study further
4a : to take in or include as a part, item, or element of a more inclusive whole charity embraces all acts that contribute to human welfare
b : to be equal or equivalent to his assets embraced $10

intransitive verb

: to participate in an embrace



Definition of embrace (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a close encircling with the arms and pressure to the chest especially as a sign of affection : hug
2 : grip, encirclement in the embrace of terror
3 : acceptance her embrace of new ideas

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Other Words from embrace


embraceable \ im-​ˈbrā-​sə-​bəl How to pronounce embraceable (audio) \ adjective
embracement \ im-​ˈbrās-​mənt How to pronounce embracement (audio) \ noun
embracer noun
embracingly \ im-​ˈbrā-​siŋ-​lē How to pronounce embracingly (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms for embrace

Synonyms: Verb

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Choose the Right Synonym for embrace


adopt, embrace, espouse mean to take an opinion, policy, or practice as one's own. adopt implies accepting something created by another or foreign to one's nature. forced to adopt new policies embrace implies a ready or happy acceptance. embraced the customs of their new homeland espouse adds an implication of close attachment to a cause and a sharing of its fortunes. espoused the cause of women's rights

include, comprehend, embrace, involve mean to contain within as part of the whole. include suggests the containment of something as a constituent, component, or subordinate part of a larger whole. the price of dinner includes dessert comprehend implies that something comes within the scope of a statement or definition. his system comprehends all history embrace implies a gathering of separate items within a whole. her faith embraces both Christian and non-Christian beliefs involve suggests inclusion by virtue of the nature of the whole, whether by being its natural or inevitable consequence. the new job involves a lot of detail

Examples of embrace in a Sentence

Verb They embraced one last time before going their separate ways. a politician who has been embraced by conservatives Charity embraces all acts of generous giving. It's a subject that embraces many areas of learning. Noun He held her in a warm embrace.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Unlike the 2016 presidential contest when Michigan received scant attention as Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton was MIA, this time Democratic candidates are embracing the Great Lakes State and showing it some love. Carol Cain, Detroit Free Press, "As presidential train rolls through Michigan, don't forget Kwame Kilpatrick," 22 Feb. 2020 And if her social media feed is any indication, Seymour is embracing the festivities - stocking up on accessories like fake eyelashes and crazy glasses. NBC News, "Lesley Jane Seymour's comeback career story will inspire you to find your dream job," 12 Feb. 2020 Indigenous success is slowly being embraced and celebrated in more white spaces, from art, literature, academia, film, and media to politics. Nick Martin, The New Republic, "The Dissonance of a Land Acknowledgment at the Oscars," 10 Feb. 2020 China, with the world’s second-largest economy, is further embracing repression under President Xi Jinping, Pompeo said. BostonGlobe.com, "Stories you may have missed from the world of business," 9 Feb. 2020 Jonathan was embracing María de la Luz Alvarado, his grandmother and Cecilia Ochoa's mother. Imelda García, Dallas News, "‘Justice has been done’: Relatives of Oak Cliff massacre victims satisfied with killer’s execution," 8 Feb. 2020 Some, like public relations executive Karla Barbosa, are proudly embracing the concept. Samantha Murphy Kelly, CNN, "Plastic surgery inspired by filters and photo editing apps isn't going away," 8 Feb. 2020 Some people are embracing the protocol concept with enthusiasm. al, "United Methodist bishop sets meetings to talk about possible split," 4 Feb. 2020 An unanticipated problem was encountered, check back soon and try again Vanessa Hudgens is happily embracing the single life after her split from longtime boyfriend Austin Butler. Aurelie Corinthios, PEOPLE.com, "Vanessa Hudgens Is 'Not One to Sit Around and Mope' After Austin Butler Split, Source Says," 24 Jan. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The good-news story of this awards season has been the embrace of Bong. Michael Schulman, The New Yorker, "Oscars 2020 Spotlight: The Directors," 6 Feb. 2020 Perhaps the one clear advantage the series has over High Fidelity's previous iterations is its embrace of musical eclecticism. Inkoo Kang, The Hollywood Reporter, "'High Fidelity': TV Review," 3 Feb. 2020 As his teammates skated over to congratulate him after the win, there was an embrace from Lundqvist, the eloquent Swede and perennial fan favorite who holds virtually every goaltending record in franchise history. Allan Kreda, New York Times, "A Great Goaltending Hope Arrives With a Win," 8 Jan. 2020 Perhaps the biggest update is an embrace of global food, with new entries for Guyanese pepperpot, Thai-style wings and lamb shawarma. Mark Kennedy, Twin Cities, "For ‘Joy of Cooking’ revision, editors mixed marriage, food," 12 Nov. 2019 Barrels of ink and countless hours of news time have been devoted to President Trump’s casual embrace of unilateralism and authoritarianism — with good cause. Michael Tanner, National Review, "Presidents Gone Wild — with Executive Orders," 23 Oct. 2019 The pendulum swing to the Democratic party’s embrace of economically destructive, environmentally nonconstructive policy ideas has been rapid, to say the least. David L. Bahnsen, National Review, "The Warren Fracking Ban: On Public Lands, and Heck, Everywhere Else," 28 Jan. 2020 Fresh starts and quick bonds In a sense, the DSO’s embrace of Bignamini embodies a certain conception of Detroit circa 2020: a city imbued with hard-won, deeply chiseled authenticity, now pushing forward with youthful creative energy. Brian Mccollum, Detroit Free Press, "A new Detroit maestro: DSO names young Italian conductor Jader Bignamini as music director," 22 Jan. 2020 Taiwan’s embrace of wind has come alongside a decision to phase out nuclear power. The Economist, "Political economiesDoes democracy hurt or help growth in the tiger economies of Asia?," 7 Dec. 2019

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a


1592, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for embrace


Middle English, from Anglo-French embracer, from en- + brace pair of arms — more at brace entry 2

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Time Traveler for embrace

Time Traveler

The first known use of embrace was in the 14th century

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Statistics for embrace

Last Updated

25 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Embrace.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/embrace. Accessed 26 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for embrace


How to pronounce embrace (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of embrace

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to hold someone in your arms as a way of expressing love or friendship
: to accept (something or someone) readily or gladly
: to use (an opportunity) eagerly



English Language Learners Definition of embrace (Entry 2 of 2)

: the act of holding someone in your arms : the act of embracing someone


em·​brace | \ im-ˈbrās How to pronounce embrace (audio) \
embraced; embracing

Kids Definition of embrace

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to hold in the arms : hug The old friends embraced each other.
2 : to surround on all sides Low hills embraced the valley.
3 : to accept readily or gladly She is always ready to embrace an opportunity.
4 : include Mathematics embraces arithmetic, algebra, and geometry.



Kids Definition of embrace (Entry 2 of 2)

: an act of holding in the arms : hug

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More from Merriam-Webster on embrace

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for embrace

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with embrace

Spanish Central: Translation of embrace

Nglish: Translation of embrace for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of embrace for Arabic Speakers

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