ex·tend | \ ik-ˈstend \
extended; extending; extends

Definition of extend 

transitive verb

1 : to spread or stretch forth : unbend extended both her arms

2a : to stretch out to fullest length

b : to cause (an animal, such as a horse) to move at full stride

c : to exert (oneself) to full capacity could work long and hard without seeming to extend himself

d(1) : to increase the bulk of (as by adding a cheaper substance or a modifier)

(2) : adulterate

3 [ Middle English, from Medieval Latin extendere (from Latin) or Anglo-French estendre, from Old French ]

a British : to take possession of (something, such as land) by a writ of extent

b obsolete : to take by force

4a : to make the offer of : proffer extending aid to the needy extending their greetings

b : to make available extending credit to customers

5a : to cause to reach (as in distance or scope) national authority was extended over new territories

b : to cause to be longer : prolong extend the side of a triangle extended their visit another day also : to prolong the time of payment of

c : advance, further extending her potential through job training

6a : to cause to be of greater area or volume : enlarge extended the patio to the back of the house

b : to increase the scope, meaning, or application of : broaden beauty, I suppose, opens the heart, extends the consciousness —Algernon Blackwood

c archaic : exaggerate

intransitive verb

1 : to stretch out in distance, space, or time : reach their jurisdiction extended over the whole area

2 : to reach in scope or application his concern extends beyond mere business to real service to his customers

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Other words from extend

extendability \ik-ˌsten-də-ˈbi-lə-tē \ noun
extendable or less commonly extendible \ik-ˈsten-də-bəl \ adjective

Choose the Right Synonym for extend

extend, lengthen, prolong, protract mean to draw out or add to so as to increase in length. extend and lengthen imply a drawing out in space or time but extend may also imply increase in width, scope, area, or range. extend a vacation extend welfare services lengthen a skirt lengthen the workweek prolong suggests chiefly increase in duration especially beyond usual limits. prolonged illness protract adds to prolong implications of needlessness, vexation, or indefiniteness. protracted litigation

Examples of extend in a Sentence

He extended a hand in greeting. sitting with both legs fully extended The table measures eight feet long when it is fully extended. The table extends to eight feet in length. The woods extend for miles to the west. Their knowledge of the family's history extends back to colonial times. Their influence extends well beyond their immediate circle of friends. His popularity extends from coast to coast.
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Recent Examples on the Web

After a rapid rise in Spain, including Rico scoring his first La Liga goal against Sporting Gijon a month after his move, Leganes moved swiftly to extend Rico’s contract until 2021. SI.com, "Bournemouth Switch Attention to Leganes Full Back as Cherries Baulk at Kieran Tierney Asking Price," 13 July 2018 There are additional plans by the Town/Lions to fully extend the paver sidewalks, improve the playground drainage and refurbish the Lions’ drinking fountain. The Aegis, "Pavilion installed at Shamrock Park, equipment improved," 13 July 2018 That lease included a provision that allowed the organization to extend its lease for another two years until 2015. Steve Lord, Aurora Beacon-News, "Culture Stock leaves downtown Aurora building with future site unknown," 13 July 2018 Efforts to extend federal OSHA protection to all public employees have been stymied time after time. Mike Hendricks, kansascity, "Firefighters protect us. Who protects them?," 13 July 2018 The cost of a project to extend the South Shore line from Hammond to Dyer has risen by about $100 million to $764.3 million, the Regional Development Authority said Thursday. Tim Zorn, Post-Tribune, "West Lake rail expansion project cost rises to $764.3M, RDA says," 12 July 2018 Later in the inning, Ryan French had a two-run triple to extend the lead to 6-0. Charles Rich, latimes.com, "Crescenta Valley 9-11 All-Stars baseball captures District 16 title," 12 July 2018 Having read the script more than 18 months ago, Jablonsky says that the adaptation from page to screen is virtually identical, save for a minor change to extend the ending. Byron Burton, The Hollywood Reporter, "Why 'Skyscraper' Composer Didn't Want a Marvel-Style Score," 12 July 2018 At least two Senate bills have been introduced to extend the program through January, but neither has gained traction. Daniel Cusick, Scientific American, "As Hurricane Season Ramps Up, Flood Insurance Program Set to Expire," 11 July 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for extend

Middle English, from Anglo-French or Latin; Anglo-French estendre, from Latin extendere, from ex- + tendere to stretch — more at thin

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Phrases Related to extend

extend oneself

Statistics for extend

Last Updated

18 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for extend

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

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More Definitions for extend



English Language Learners Definition of extend

: to cause (something, such as your arm or leg) to straighten out or to stretch out

: to become longer or to be able to become longer

: to continue in a specified direction or over a specified distance, space, or time


ex·tend | \ ik-ˈstend \
extended; extending

Kids Definition of extend

1 : to hold out extend a hand

2 : to stretch out or across something There was no way of going around it, for it seemed to extend … as far as they could see … —L. Frank Baum, The Wizard of Oz

3 : to make longer extend a visit

4 : stretch entry 1 sense 2 extend a sail

5 : enlarge extend the meaning of a word

ex·tend | \ ik-ˈstend \

Medical Definition of extend 

1 : to straighten out (as an arm or leg)

2 : to increase the quantity or bulk of (as by adding a cheaper substance or a modifier) extending ground meat with cereal also : adulterate

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Comments on extend

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


a magnificent or impressive array

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