enforce

verb
en·​force | \ in-ˈfȯrs How to pronounce enforce (audio) , en-\
enforced; enforcing; enforces

Definition of enforce

transitive verb

1 : to give force to : strengthen
2 : to urge with energy enforce arguments
3 : constrain, compel enforce obedience
4 obsolete : to effect or gain by force
5 : to carry out effectively enforce laws

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Other Words from enforce

enforceability \ in-​ˌfȯr-​sə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce enforceability (audio) , en-​ \ noun
enforceable \ in-​ˈfȯr-​sə-​bəl How to pronounce enforceable (audio) , en-​ \ adjective
enforcement \ in-​ˈfȯr-​smənt How to pronounce enforcement (audio) , en-​ \ noun

Examples of enforce in a Sentence

Police will be enforcing the parking ban. the duty of the police is to enforce the law

Recent Examples on the Web

Washington and California both enforce campaign finance laws through independent commissions. oregonlive, "Case Closed: In Oregon campaign investigations, ‘I did not’ is all it takes," 17 Sep. 2019 According to the release, his focus will be enforcing and implementing global best practices to ensure safety standards for horses and riders. Courier Journal, The Courier-Journal, "Breeders' Cup president leaving to join The Stronach Group," 13 Sep. 2019 San Antonio has enforced that age requirement through city ordinance since last October. Lauren Caruba, ExpressNews.com, "San Antonio health department: Avoid vaping," 13 Sep. 2019 The Chicago Housing Authority enforced its ban with warrantless home searches until a federal court in 1994 ordered it to desist. David B. Kopel, National Review, "Heller’s Precarious Situation," 12 Sep. 2019 That left the administration free to enforce the policy on asylum seekers arriving in New Mexico and Texas. BostonGlobe.com, "The high-court action allows the administration to impose the new policy everywhere while the court case against it continues.," 12 Sep. 2019 That left the administration free to enforce the policy on asylum seekers arriving in New Mexico and Texas. Mark Sherman, The Denver Post, "Supreme Court allows nationwide enforcement of new Trump administration restrictions on asylum seekers," 11 Sep. 2019 That left the administration free to enforce the policy on asylum seekers arriving in New Mexico and Texas. Mark Sherman, Anchorage Daily News, "Supreme Court allows broad enforcement of Trump administration asylum limits," 11 Sep. 2019 None of the companies will be strictly enforcing the policy, according to the Associated Press, citing a memo by Walmart CEO Doug McMillon that said the company doesn’t want to expose workers to potentially dangerous confrontations. Justin Rohrlich, Quartz, "Five US retail chains are now banning the open carry of guns in their stores," 5 Sep. 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for enforce

Middle English, from Anglo-French enforcer, from en- + force force

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Statistics for enforce

Last Updated

2 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for enforce

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

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More Definitions for enforce

enforce

verb

English Language Learners Definition of enforce

: to make (a law, rule, etc.) active or effective : to make sure that people do what is required by (a law, rule, etc.)
: to make (something) happen : to force or cause (something)

enforce

verb
en·​force | \ in-ˈfȯrs How to pronounce enforce (audio) \
enforced; enforcing

Kids Definition of enforce

1 : to make happen He tried to enforce cooperation.
2 : to carry out or make effective enforce a law

Other Words from enforce

enforcement \ –mənt \ noun

enforce

transitive verb
en·​force
enforced; enforcing

Legal Definition of enforce

: to cause to take effect or to be fulfilled enforcing the divorce decree Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislationU.S. Constitution amend. XIX

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More from Merriam-Webster on enforce

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with enforce

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for enforce

Spanish Central: Translation of enforce

Nglish: Translation of enforce for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of enforce for Arabic Speakers

Comments on enforce

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