en·com·pass | \in-ˈkəm-pəs, 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, 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

The galaxy’s spiral disk of stars is actually made of two parts: a thinner, denser region encompassed by a thicker, more diffuse region. Ramin Skibba, WIRED, "This Galactic Collision Shaped the History of the Milky Way," 8 July 2018 The urge toward all-encompassing documentation goes way back. Mark Rozzo, Vanities, "Ed Ruscha Still Has Plenty More to Say About America," 30 May 2018 Think of this as your all-encompassing guide to Memorial Day sales. Banu Ibrahim, CNN Underscored, "Memorial Day sales to shop right now," 27 May 2018 Military technology moved from missiles to encompass RTs, MTs, Likes, #FFs, GIFs, and B3s. Nick Bilton, The Hive, "“Threats,” “Ultimatums,” and “Espionage”: Inside Silicon Valley’s Spy Wars," 13 Apr. 2018 Over the years, the home has been sympathetically updated with additions for a total of five alterations that follow the principles of the modernist architect and now encompass four bedrooms and three bathrooms over 2,838 square feet. Lauren Ro, Curbed, "Updated Marcel Breuer home asks $895K outside NYC," 26 Mar. 2018 The entire development would encompass 2,200 acres in Jackson Township east of Route 53 between Elwood and Manhattan. Alicia Fabbre, Daily Southtown, "Manhattan sues Elwood and business park developer," 15 Mar. 2018 On Monday, Clueless actress Stacey Dash filed to run for Congress as a Republican in California’s 44th District, which encompasses the Los Angeles neighborhoods of Compton, Watts, San Pedro, and North Long Beach. Shannon Barbour, Cosmopolitan, "'Clueless' Actress Stacey Dash Is Running For Congress," 27 Feb. 2018 Set to launch in February, the line will encompass apparel, shoes, and accessories—all under $40. Ana Colon, Glamour, "Here's Your First Look at Universal Thread, Target's Inclusive New Fashion Line," 15 Jan. 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

8 Oct 2018

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 \
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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