en·​com·​pass | \ in-ˈkəm-pəs How to pronounce encompass (audio) , en- also -ˈkäm-\
encompassed; encompassing; encompasses

Definition of encompass

transitive verb

1a : include, comprehend a plan that encompasses a number of aims
b : envelop
2a : to form a circle about : enclose
b obsolete : to go completely around
3 : bring about, accomplish encompass a task

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Other Words from encompass

encompassment \ in-​ˈkəm-​pə-​smənt How to pronounce encompassment (audio) , en-​ also  -​ˈkäm-​ \ noun

Examples of encompass in a Sentence

The district encompasses most of the downtown area. a neighborhood encompassed by a highway

Recent Examples on the Web

Moore said, referring to the national recreation area that now encompasses 80,000 acres in three counties and was established by Congress in 1972 after years of community pressure. John King, SFChronicle.com, "Change of leaders at Bay Area parks conservancy signals view on the future," 7 July 2019 Armed with little more than a high school diploma -- and no scientific background -- Mazzorato has emerged as one of the most vocal proponents of an anti-vaccine movement that now encompasses an estimated 1% of Italy's population. Nina Dos Santos, CNN, "Why this 7-year-old can't go anywhere near unvaccinated children," 26 June 2019 Southern whites covered the area now encompassing Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe and parts of South Africa. Rebecca Boyle, Discover Magazine, "The Quixotic Quest to Birth a Baby Northern White Rhino," 25 June 2019 The opera director Robert Carsen had shouldered responsibility for the impossible task of encompassing the mercurial intelligence and vast, multifaceted career of the greatest polymath ever to work in fashion. Sarah Mower, Vogue, "Karl For Ever: In Paris, the Fashion Industry Pays Tribute to Karl Lagerfeld," 21 June 2019 The genus sedum encompasses mostly fleshy, succulent plants, now in vogue seemingly everywhere. Colleen Smith, The Denver Post, "The perfect plant that’s easy enough for beginner gardeners but also interesting enough for experts," 17 June 2019 The Disney empire now encompasses 12 theme parks at six resorts across the globe. Arthur Levine, USA TODAY, "Disney parks: Every upcoming ride, hotel and attraction," 15 June 2018 Which king is now the central question, and the answer could shed more light on the encompassing mystery of Abel Beth Maacah. Avi Selk, miamiherald, "This 3,000-year-old glass head has deepened one of Bible's most tantalizing mysteries," 10 June 2018 Now in new documents, the recall encompasses 2012 and 2013 Sonatas, and 2011 and 2012 Sonata Hybrid sedans, adding another 425,305 to the recall. William Thornton, AL.com, "Hyundai adds 425,000 Sonatas to recall for air bag risk," 27 Apr. 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2a

History and Etymology for encompass

Middle English

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Statistics for encompass

Last Updated

16 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for encompass

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

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More Definitions for encompass



English Language Learners Definition of encompass

: to include (something) as a part
: to cover or surround (an area)


en·​com·​pass | \ in-ˈkəm-pəs How to pronounce encompass (audio) \
encompassed; encompassing

Kids Definition of encompass

1 : to cover or surround : encircle Mountains encompass the peaceful valley.
2 : include The subject of social studies encompasses history, civics, and geography.

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Comments on encompass

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


appealing forcibly to the mind or reason

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