ful·​fill | \ fu̇(l)-ˈfil How to pronounce fulfill (audio) also fə(l)- \
variants: or fulfil
fulfilled; fulfilling

Definition of fulfill

transitive verb

1a : to put into effect : execute He fulfilled his pledge to cut taxes.
b : to meet the requirements of (a business order) Their order for more TVs was promptly fulfilled.
c : to measure up to : satisfy She hasn't yet fulfilled the requirements needed to graduate.
d : to bring to an end she came to install herself and fulfill her time at the house— Willa Cather
2a : to develop the full potentialities of He has a lot of talent, but he hasn't really fulfilled his potential.
b : to convert into reality a sense of the failure of life to fulfill its ultimate expectations— Leslie Rees
3 archaic : to make full : fill her subtle, warm, and golden breath … fulfills him with beatitude— Alfred Tennyson

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Other Words from fulfill

fulfiller noun

Choose the Right Synonym for fulfill

perform, execute, discharge, accomplish, achieve, effect, fulfill mean to carry out or into effect. perform implies action that follows established patterns or procedures or fulfills agreed-upon requirements and often connotes special skill. performed gymnastics execute stresses the carrying out of what exists in plan or in intent. executed the hit-and-run discharge implies execution and completion of appointed duties or tasks. discharged his duties accomplish stresses the successful completion of a process rather than the means of carrying it out. accomplished everything they set out to do achieve adds to accomplish the implication of conquered difficulties. achieve greatness effect adds to achieve an emphasis on the inherent force in the agent capable of surmounting obstacles. effected sweeping reforms fulfill implies a complete realization of ends or possibilities. fulfilled their ambitions

Examples of fulfill in a Sentence

He fulfilled his pledge to cut taxes. She failed to fulfill her obligations. The program is intended to fulfill the basic needs of children in the community. If we could have that house, our dreams would be fulfilled. He fulfilled his childhood wish to become a professional baseball player. She fulfilled her life's ambition when she started her own business. He's trying to fulfill himself as an artist.
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Recent Examples on the Web His reluctance to fulfill his true national duty—the duty to progress and advance in his social position—thrust Sun Hee into despair. Sophie Pinkham, The New York Review of Books, "‘Something Resembling Normal Life’," 17 Nov. 2020 If any members of the State Board of Canvassers fails to certify the statewide election results, they could be taken to court and ordered to fulfill their constitutional duty to certify the final results. Dave Boucher, Detroit Free Press, "Q&A: Michigan, we know a lot has happened since Election Day. Here's a recap.," 15 Nov. 2020 According to people familiar with the matter, the moves would fulfill a promise by White House officials to take steps to install like-minded staffers at NOAA and the U.S. Global Change Research Program. Anchorage Daily News, "In Trump’s final days, a 30-year-old aide purges officials seen as insufficiently loyal," 14 Nov. 2020 Next week, Lewis will officially fulfill that dream. Duane Rankin, The Arizona Republic, "Is 'fast' and 'explosive' Kira Lewis future answer for Phoenix Suns at point guard?," 13 Nov. 2020 Not unlike the duty created by the power differential between professionals and their patients/clients/employees, this gives her the opportunity to spread great fear or fulfill that duty with responsibility and restraint. Sarah Van Benschoten, Star Tribune, "Klobuchar slipped badly during Supreme Court confirmation hearings," 16 Oct. 2020 Community leaders say the election could prompt immigrant and refugee populations to turn out to fulfill their civic duty, Cameron Fields reports. cleveland, "96% of Ohioans living in a red or orange county for coronavirus: The Wake Up for Friday, Oct. 9, 2020," 9 Oct. 2020 Mass testing centers are popping up in stadiums and parking lots and under the shade of tents as students line up to fulfill their public health duty. Washington Post, "Welcome to college. Now get tested for the coronavirus — again and again.," 4 Sep. 2020 Feet are up, eyes forward, mouths open, as our American friends fulfill their patriotic duty by stuffing themselves in front of a sporting event. Claire Fitzsimmons, Longreads, "Eating To Save My Mind," 10 Aug. 2020

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

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3

History and Etymology for fulfill

Middle English fulfillen, from Old English fullfyllan, from full + fyllan to fill

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Time Traveler for fulfill

Time Traveler

The first known use of fulfill was before the 12th century

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Statistics for fulfill

Last Updated

22 Nov 2020

Cite this Entry

“Fulfill.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/fulfill. Accessed 28 Nov. 2020.

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More Definitions for fulfill


How to pronounce fulfill (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of fulfill

: to do what is required by (something, such as a promise or a contract)
: to succeed in doing or providing (something)
: to succeed in achieving (something) : to make (something, such as a dream) true or real


variants: or fulfil \ fu̇l-​ˈfil \
fulfilled; fulfilling

Kids Definition of fulfill

1 : to make real fulfill a dream
2 : satisfy sense 4 fulfill a requirement

Other Words from fulfill

fulfillment \ -​mənt \ noun

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