em·​pha·​size | \ ˈem(p)-fə-ˌsīz How to pronounce emphasize (audio) \
emphasized; emphasizing

Definition of emphasize

transitive verb

: to place emphasis on : stress emphasized the need for reform

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Examples of emphasize in a Sentence

supermarket tabloids that emphasize sensational news stories that huge belt buckle only emphasizes his big gut
Recent Examples on the Web Public health officials emphasize the role of hand-washing, together with social distancing and face masks, to curb the continued spread of COVID-19. Rebecca Richards-kortum, The Conversation, "‘Frugal design’ brings medical innovations to communities that lack resources during the pandemic," 29 Mar. 2021 Do some vaccines work better than others? Public health experts emphasize that all the vaccines are effective, particularly at preventing serious disease. USA Today, "Comparing the COVID-19 vaccines," 27 Mar. 2021 Sinema, who is bisexual, and May, who is gay, settled on a strategy to emphasize the measure’s harm to straight couples in domestic partnerships. Melanie Mason Staff Writer, Los Angeles Times, "For Arizona Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, being in the majority puts her maverick instincts to the test," 22 Mar. 2021 Congressional Democrats have tried to emphasize the achievement of getting the Covid-19 relief bill through the 50-50 Senate, which Democrats captured in a pair of upset special election wins in Georgia. Kristina Peterson, WSJ, "Covid-19 Aid Bill Heads Back to House After Tense Senate Vote," 7 Mar. 2021 In the months leading up to the legislative meeting, Mr. Xi has sought to emphasize confidence in China’s authoritarian path. New York Times, "A Confident China Promises Robust Growth and a Hard Line on Hong Kong," 4 Mar. 2021 The Biden campaign, like the Obama administration, has sought to de-emphasize the split by focusing on long-term solutions in Central America. Dara Lind, ProPublica, "Trump Got What He Wanted at the Border. Would Biden Undo It?," 28 Oct. 2020 Apple and the carriers, therefore, have tried to emphasize a few other potential uses for 5G. Aaron Pressman, Fortune, "How fast will Apple’s new 5G iPhones be?," 15 Oct. 2020 Trump has sought to emphasize the China assessment, warning of dire implications for its result. Kevin Johnson, USA TODAY, "Intelligence officials find 'probing' of election systems, not mail-in ballot fraud," 26 Aug. 2020

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

1793, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for emphasize

Time Traveler

The first known use of emphasize was in 1793

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Statistics for emphasize

Last Updated

2 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Emphasize.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/emphasize. Accessed 11 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for emphasize



English Language Learners Definition of emphasize

: to give special attention to (something) : to place emphasis on (something)


em·​pha·​size | \ ˈem-fə-ˌsīz How to pronounce emphasize (audio) \
emphasized; emphasizing

Kids Definition of emphasize

: to give special attention or importance to He emphasized the word “maybe.”

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Comments on emphasize

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