establish

verb
es·​tab·​lish | \ i-ˈsta-blish How to pronounce establish (audio) \
established; establishing; establishes

Definition of establish

transitive verb

1 : to institute (something, such as a law) permanently by enactment or agreement
2 obsolete : settle sense 7
3a : to make firm or stable
b : to introduce and cause to grow and multiply establish grass on pasturelands
4a : to bring into existence : found established a republic
b : bring about, effect established friendly relations
5a : to put on a firm basis : set up establish his son in business
b : to put into a favorable position
c : to gain full recognition or acceptance of the role established her as a star
6 : to make (a church) a national or state institution
7 : to put beyond doubt : prove established my innocence

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from establish

establishable \ i-​ˈsta-​bli-​shə-​bəl How to pronounce establishable (audio) \ adjective
establisher \ i-​ˈsta-​bli-​shər How to pronounce establisher (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for establish

Synonyms

demonstrate, prove, show, substantiate

Antonyms

disprove

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of establish in a Sentence

The film established her as a star. She established a reputation as a hard worker. The word is now established as part of the English language. The company has established itself as a leader in the industry. As a young doctor he worked hard to establish himself in the community. They want to establish their children in the family business. She established a system of tracking expenses more accurately. The two countries established a mutual trade agreement. establishing a link between diet and cancer Investigators are trying to establish if anyone knew about these problems before the accident.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

Before new campgrounds can be established, CEQA requires wide-reaching, time-consuming and expensive studies. Tom Stienstra, SFChronicle.com, "Camping Cabins are a game-changer at Bay Area parks," 11 Aug. 2019 Investors prepared to tolerate losses until Uber establishes a dominant market position in ride hailing may, like a hopeful passenger on a busy weekend night, have a long wait. The Economist, "Uber lost over $5bn in the second quarter," 9 Aug. 2019 Even for subject matter experts, the Bureau held a careful vetting process to establish who made the cut. Michael Waters, Smithsonian, "The Government Taste Testers Who Reshaped America’s Diet," 9 Aug. 2019 Shallow sprinkling as part of your lawn irrigation may not be enough until the plants are well established. Calvin Finch, ExpressNews.com, "How to deal with the garden damage from the dang deer," 9 Aug. 2019 If state lawmakers want to encourage more housing construction, researchers suggested requiring cities to establish fees early in the project, provide more justification for charges, and consider reducing fees on accessory dwelling units, or AUDs. Louis Hansen, The Mercury News, "California housing crisis: Development fees unpredictable, stifle construction," 8 Aug. 2019 On Tuesday, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine, a Republican, called on his legislature to establish red flag laws and expand background checks. James Barragán, Dallas News, "Calls grow for 'red flag' gun laws after El Paso massacre, but shooter didn’t set off alarms," 7 Aug. 2019 Credit Union 1 announced the launch of the program in November, to establish financial services for an industry that largely operates in cash. Annie Zak, Anchorage Daily News, "Alaska credit union to end pilot program that served marijuana businesses," 6 Aug. 2019 Zhong worked with the NewGen Peacebuilders, a community group for improving the lives of disadvantaged communities while spreading awareness of their difficulties, to establish the two-day conference Turn Empathy into Action Youth Peace Conference. Chevall Pryce, Houston Chronicle, "Cy-Woods High School student selected as finalist for national award," 5 Aug. 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for establish

Middle English establissen, from Anglo-French establiss-, stem of establir, from Latin stabilire, from stabilis stable

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about establish

Statistics for establish

Last Updated

14 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for establish

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for establish

establish

verb

English Language Learners Definition of establish

: to cause (someone or something) to be widely known and accepted
: to put (someone or something) in a position, role, etc., that will last for a long time
: to begin or create (something that is meant to last for a long time)

establish

verb
es·​tab·​lish | \ i-ˈsta-blish How to pronounce establish (audio) \
established; establishing

Kids Definition of establish

1 : to bring into being : found They established a colony.
2 : to put beyond doubt : prove She established her innocence.

establish

transitive verb
es·​tab·​lish

Legal Definition of establish

1 : to institute (as a law) permanently by enactment or agreement we the people of the United States…do ordain and establish this ConstitutionU.S. Constitution preamble
2 : to make firm or stable
3 : to bring into existence : found Congress shall have power…to establish post offices and post roadsU.S. Constitution art. I specifically : to found (a national bank) pursuant to a charter
4 : to make (a church) a national or state institution — see also establishment, establishment clause
5 : to put beyond doubt : prove
6 : to place in a position of being accepted or followed a rule established by case law

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on establish

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

WORD OF THE DAY

a haphazard or makeshift solution

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Summer 2019 Words of the Day Quiz

  • a-bowl-of-peach-sorbet-with-cut-peaches-next-to-it
  • Which is a synonym of desideratum?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

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!