foun·​da·​tion | \ fau̇n-ˈdā-shən How to pronounce foundation (audio) \

Definition of foundation

1 : the act of founding here since the foundation of the school
2 : a basis (such as a tenet, principle, or axiom) upon which something stands or is supported the foundations of geometry the rumor is without foundation in fact
3a : funds given for the permanent support of an institution : endowment
b : an organization or institution established by endowment with provision for future maintenance a trust administered by a foundation
4 : an underlying base or support especially : the whole masonry substructure of a building
5a : a body or ground upon which something is built up or overlaid a limestone foundation
b : a woman's supporting undergarment : corset
c : a cosmetic usually used as a base for makeup

Keep scrolling for more

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from foundation

foundationless \ fau̇n-​ˈdā-​shən-​ləs How to pronounce foundation (audio) \ adjective

Examples of foundation in a Sentence

The inspector discovered a crack in the house's foundation. The book explains the moral foundations on which her political career was built. These problems threaten the very foundations of modern society. The scandal has shaken the government to its foundations. They established a foundation to help orphaned children.
Recent Examples on the Web While announcing his diagnosis, the group launched the Hop on a Cure foundation, which will work toward finding a cure for ALS. Kenan Draughornestaff Writer, Los Angeles Times, 23 May 2022 Campus 805, a development near downtown Huntsville that includes restaurants and craft breweries, is making the donation to the hospital’s foundation, which will then distribute the gift cards to employees. Paul Gattis |, al, 23 May 2022 The collection, which is now vegan and cruelty-free, includes foundation, powder, priming serum, and 11 former bestselling lipstick shades with the addition of new nudes. Evan Nicole Brown, The Hollywood Reporter, 23 May 2022 No foundation, concealer, bronzer, eyeliner, brow gel, or even a swipe of mascara. Megan Decker,, 18 May 2022 While this otherworld experience is the end result, layer upon layer of behind-the-scenes technology will form the foundation of the metaverse, including data centers and network infrastructure. Steven Carlini, Forbes, 18 May 2022 The study could lay the foundation for growing plants that supply oxygen and food on the moon, a timely consideration as NASA's Artemis program looks to land the first woman and the first person of color at the lunar south pole later this decade. Ashley Strickland, CNN, 12 May 2022 The bundle includes four professional-level foundation, brow, powder, and eye brushes for a flawless finish. Tiffany Dodson And Halie Lesavage, Harper's BAZAAR, 11 May 2022 According to the Rey Feo Scholarship Foundation, every year the foundation and the Consejo Real de Reyes Feos Anteriores, which comprises former Reyes Feos, select two prominent businessmen to compete for the title of Rey Feo. David Dekunder, San Antonio Express-News, 11 May 2022 See More

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

Keep scrolling for more

First Known Use of foundation

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for foundation

Middle English fundacioun, borrowed from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French fundacion, borrowed from Latin fundātiōn-, fundātiō, from fundāre "to found entry 4" + -tiōn-, -tiō, suffix of verbal action

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About foundation

Time Traveler for foundation

Time Traveler

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

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near foundation




See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for foundation

Last Updated

29 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Foundation.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 May. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for foundation


foun·​da·​tion | \ fau̇n-ˈdā-shən How to pronounce foundation (audio) \

Kids Definition of foundation

1 : the support upon which something rests the foundation of a building the foundations of our legal system
2 : the act of beginning or creating He has taught here since the school's foundation.



Legal Definition of foundation

1 : a basis upon which something stands or is supported specifically : a witness's preliminary testimony given to identify or explain evidence being offered at trial and establish its connection to the issue for which it is offered the lack of any foundation for the orthopedic surgeon's familiarity with the…standard of care rendered the surgeon's opinion testimony inadmissible National Law Journal

Note: Before evidence can be admitted at trial, the foundation for it must be laid by the party offering it. A foundation must also be laid for the qualification of a witness as an expert, or for the assertion of a privilege.

2a : funds given for the permanent support of an institution : endowment
b : an organization or institution established by endowment with provision for future maintenance

Other Words from foundation

foundational adjective

More from Merriam-Webster on foundation

Nglish: Translation of foundation for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of foundation for Arabic Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Name That Color

  • a light greenish blue color
  • Name that color:
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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