ensure

verb
en·​sure | \ in-ˈshu̇r How to pronounce ensure (audio) \
ensured; ensuring

Definition of ensure

transitive verb

: to make sure, certain, or safe : guarantee

Keep scrolling for more

Choose the Right Synonym for ensure

ensure, insure, assure, secure mean to make a thing or person sure. ensure, insure, and assure are interchangeable in many contexts where they indicate the making certain or inevitable of an outcome, but ensure may imply a virtual guarantee the government has ensured the safety of the refugees , while insure sometimes stresses the taking of necessary measures beforehand careful planning should insure the success of the party , and assure distinctively implies the removal of doubt and suspense from a person's mind. I assure you that no harm will be done secure implies action taken to guard against attack or loss. sent reinforcements to secure their position

Do you ensure or insure?

There is considerable confusion about whether ensure and insure are distinct words, variants of the same word, or some combination of the two. They are in fact different words, but with sufficient overlap in meaning and form as to create uncertainty as to which should be used when. We define ensure as “to make sure, certain, or safe” and one sense of insure, “to make certain especially by taking necessary measures and precautions,” is quite similar. But insure has the additional meaning “to provide or obtain insurance on or for,” which is not shared by ensure. Some usage guides recommend using insure in financial contexts (as in “she insured her book collection for a million dollars”) and ensure in the general sense “to make certain” (as in “she ensured that the book collection was packed well”).

Examples of ensure in a Sentence

A combination of … personal courage, dashing leadership from the front, willingness to share the toughest rigours suffered by the ordinary soldiers, and a liberal dose of sheer good fortune ensured his stature as a great general. — Paul Cartledge, History Today, July 2004 Indeed, even though she's been off the mainstream radar for more than a decade, her passionate love for and commitment to rock & roll have ensured that she's managed to make a steady living. — Tom Sinclair, Entertainment Weekly, 24 Nov. 2000 At 20, [Kobe] Bryant is already living the modern American dream, a $70 million man on the NBA's glamour team in the nation's starriest city. His acrobatic moves make him the envy of teenage boys and his good looks and megawatt smile a heartthrob for teenage girls, ensuring his status as one of the NBA's premier pitchmen … — Allison Samuels et al., Newsweek, 31 May 1999 They took steps to ensure the safety of the passengers. regulations that ensure the wholesomeness of our food
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

In addition to helping to monitor the population, department managers hopes the cameras will aid in reviewing incidents to ensure that staff follow the rules and to provide real-life examples for training. Matt Stiles, latimes.com, "L.A. County supervisors hope cameras will make juvenile halls safer. Officers are wary," 11 June 2019 The team is working hard to ensure that the world of ELDEN RING will be a fascinating place for players to explore, filled with peril and wonder from its furthest reaches to its lowest depths. Nick Romano, EW.com, "Elden Ring, George R.R. Martin's fantasy video game with Dark Souls creator, revealed at E3," 9 June 2019 The hall has an immediate opening for an additional part-time staff person to monitor rentals and ensure the safety of the facility and its users. Christina Hyder, baltimoresun.com, "Renovations almost complete at Carroll Baldwin Hall," 7 June 2019 Reversing the trend Medicare is working closely with drug plans, pharmacists and health care providers to ensure that beneficiaries use these powerful pain medications appropriately. Bob Moos, Dallas News, "Medicare grows stricter on opioids," 7 June 2019 Haight cites priorities that include ensuring community safety and addressing flooding issues. Yvette Orozco, Houston Chronicle, "Incoming Deer Park council member wants better alert system," 6 June 2019 Since the rivers can’t fight for their own rights, they have been assigned three legal guardians to ensure their protection. Ananya Bhattacharya, Quartz India, "Birds to holy rivers: A list of everything India considers “legal persons”," 6 June 2019 Buser says that Stadia is working with Bungie to ensure Destiny players will be able to transfer their Guardian character from other platforms, currently PC and Xbox. Peter Rubin, WIRED, "Google Stadia Lands This Year—If You're Willing to Pony Up," 6 June 2019 Gatekeeper Accounting will receive an extra $24,000 for their services, which include ensuring that the commission’s reports to the Indiana State Board of Accounts are accurate. Gregory Tejeda, Post-Tribune, "Gary Redevelopment takes on two new members," 6 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'ensure.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of ensure

1660, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for ensure

Middle English, from Anglo-French ensurer, alteration of assurer — more at assure

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about ensure

Dictionary Entries near ensure

ensuingly

en suite

ensurance

ensure

ensurer

en surtout

enswathe

Statistics for ensure

Last Updated

15 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for ensure

The first known use of ensure was in 1660

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for ensure

ensure

verb

English Language Learners Definition of ensure

: to make (something) sure, certain, or safe

ensure

verb
en·​sure | \ in-ˈshu̇r How to pronounce ensure (audio) \
ensured; ensuring

Kids Definition of ensure

: to make sure, certain, or safe : guarantee The crossing guard ensures our safety as we cross the street.

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on ensure

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with ensure

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for ensure

Spanish Central: Translation of ensure

Nglish: Translation of ensure for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of ensure for Arabic Speakers

Comments on ensure

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

WORD OF THE DAY

to take the place or position of

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words for Summer: A Quiz

  • a closeup of a sunflower
  • Which of the following words means “of or relating to summer”?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!