verb \ˈgiv\

Definition of give


play \ˈgāv\;


play \ˈgi-vən\;


  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to make a present of give a doll to a child

  3. 2a :  to grant or bestow by formal action the law gives citizens the right to voteb :  to accord or yield to another gave him her confidence

  4. 3a :  to put into the possession of another for his or her use gave me his phone numberb (1) :  to administer as a sacrament (2) :  to administer as a medicinec :  to commit to another as a trust or responsibility and usually for an expressed reasond :  to transfer from one's authority or custody the sheriff gave the prisoner to the wardene :  to execute and deliver all employees must give bondf :  to convey to another give them my regards

  5. 4a :  to offer to the action of another :  proffer gave her his handb :  to yield (oneself) to a man in sexual intercourse

  6. 5a :  to present in public performance give a concertb :  to present to view or observation gave the signal to start

  7. 6 :  to provide by way of entertainment give a party

  8. 7 :  to propose as a toast

  9. 8a :  to designate as a share or portion :  allot all the earth to thee and to thy race I give — John Miltonb :  to make assignment of (a name)c :  to set forth as an actual or hypothetical datum give the dimensions of the roomd :  to attribute in thought or utterance :  ascribe gave the credit to you

  10. 9a :  to yield as a product, consequence, or effect :  produce cows give milk 84 divided by 12 gives 7b :  to bring forth :  bear

  11. 10a :  to yield possession of by way of exchange :  payb :  to dispose of for a price :  sell

  12. 11a :  to deliver by some bodily action gave him a pushb :  to carry out (as a bodily movement) gave a cynical smilec :  to inflict as punishmentd :  to award by formal verdict judgment was given against the plaintiff

  13. 12 :  to offer for consideration, acceptance, or use gives no reason for his absence

  14. 13a :  to suffer the loss of :  sacrifice gallantly gave his life for his countryb :  to offer as appropriate or due especially to something higher or more worthy gave his spirit to Godc :  to apply freely or fully :  devote gave themselves to their workd :  to offer as a pledge I give you my word

  15. 14a :  to cause one to have or receive mountains always gave him pleasureb :  to cause a person to catch by contagion, infection, or exposure

  16. 15a :  to allow one to have or take give me timeb :  to lead or attempt to lead —used with an infinitive you gave me to understand you'd be late

  17. 16 :  to care to the extent of didn't give a hoot

  18. intransitive verb
  19. 1 :  to make gifts or presents gave generously to charities

  20. 2a :  to yield to physical force or strainb :  to collapse from the application of force or pressure The canvas chair gave under her weight.c :  to undergo or submit to change for the strike to be settled, something has to give

  21. 3 :  to afford a view or passage :  open the window gives onto the terrace

  22. 4 :  to enter wholeheartedly into an activity

  23. 5 slang :  to be happening wants to know what gives

give birth

  1. :  to have a baby gave birth last Thursday

give birth to

  1. 1 :  to produce as offspring gave birth to a son

  2. 2 :  to be the source of

give chase

  1. :  to set off in pursuit

give ground

  1. :  to withdraw before superior force :  retreat

give of

  1. :  to make available :  provide generously freely gave of their time

give or take

  1. :  as an estimate accurate within (an amount to be added or subtracted) weighs 150 pounds, give or take a few pounds

give place to

  1. :  to be replaced or succeeded by optimism gave place to worry

give rise to

  1. :  to be the cause or source of :  produce

give the gun

  1. :  to open the throttle of :  speed up

give the lie to

  1. 1 :  to accuse of falsehood

  2. 2 :  to show to be false, inaccurate, or invalid

give tongue

  1. of hounds :  to begin barking on the scent

give way

  1. 1a :  retreatb :  to yield the right of way

  2. 2 :  to yield oneself without restraint or control

  3. 3a :  to yield to or as if to physical stress The roof gave way under heavy snow.b :  to yield to entreaty or insistence After several hours of debate, the opposition finally gave way.

  4. 4 :  to yield place Farmland has given way to shopping malls.

  5. 5 :  to begin to row

Examples of give in a sentence

  1. She gave him a camera for Christmas.

  2. Are you giving this to me or only lending it?

  3. She has given money to many worthy causes.

  4. They're asking people to give money for a new hospital.

  5. Please give to our charity.

  6. We already gave at the office.

  7. It is better to give than to receive.

  8. He gave me the letter.

  9. He gave her his coat to hold.

  10. He gave me a head start.

Origin and Etymology of give

Middle English, of Scandinavian origin; akin to Old Swedish giva to give; akin to Old English giefan, gifan to give, and perhaps to Latin habēre to have, hold

First Known Use: 13th century

Synonym Discussion of give

give, present, donate, bestow, confer, afford mean to convey to another as a possession. give, the general term, is applicable to any passing over of anything by any means give alms gave her a ride on a pony give my love to your mother. present carries a note of formality and ceremony present an award. donate is likely to imply a publicized giving (as to charity) donate a piano to the orphanage. bestow implies the conveying of something as a gift and may suggest condescension on the part of the giver bestow unwanted advice. confer implies a gracious giving (as of a favor or honor) confer an honorary degree. afford implies a giving or bestowing usually as a natural or legitimate consequence of the character of the giver the trees afford shade a development that affords us some hope.




Definition of give

  1. 1 :  capacity or tendency to yield to force or strain :  flexibility

  2. 2 :  the ability of a material to bend or stretch The knitted fabric has a lot of give to it.

Origin and Etymology of give

see 1give

First Known Use: 1868

GIVE Defined for Kids



verb \ˈgiv\

Definition of give for Students






  1. 1 :  to hand over to be kept :  present He gave her a present.

  2. 2 :  to cause to have Don't give me trouble.

  3. 3 :  to let someone or something have give permission

  4. 4 :  to offer for consideration or acceptance Can you give an example?

  5. 5 :  2utter give a yell give a speech

  6. 6 :  furnish 2, provide give support The candle gives light. I'm giving a party.

  7. 7 :  1pay 1 She gave me 20 dollars for my old skates.

  8. 8 :  to deliver by some bodily action I gave her a hug.

  9. 9 :  to yield as a product :  produce Two plus two gives four.

  10. 10 :  to yield slightly The mattress gave under our weight.

give in

  1. :  to stop trying to fight I begged Mom for permission till she gave in.

give out

  1. 1 :  tell 6 Don't give out your phone number.

  2. 2 :  to stop working The car finally gave out.

give up

  1. 1 :  to let go of He gave up his seat to an elderly woman.

  2. 2 :  quit Oh, I give up trying to reason with you.

give way

  1. 1 :  to break down :  collapse The bridge gave way.

  2. 2 :  to be unable to resist No one gave way to fear.




Definition of give for Students

  1. :  the ability to be bent or stretched The rope was tight, but still had some give.

Medical Dictionary


transitive verb \ˈgiv\

Medical Definition of give


\ˈgāv\play ;


\ˈgiv-ən\play ;


  1. 1:  to administer as a medicine

  2. 2:  to cause a person to catch by contagion, infection, or exposure

give birth

give birth to

Law Dictionary


transitive verb

Legal Definition of give




  1. 1a :  to make a gift of I give the remainder of my estate to my wife — compare convey, sell b :  to grant or bestow by formal action the law gives citizens the right to vote

  2. 2a :  to transfer from one's authority or custody the sheriff gave the prisoner to the warden b :  to execute and deliver all officers must give bond c :  to communicate or impart to another failed to give adequate notice d :  to offer or submit for the consideration of another give testimony in court

  3. 3 :  to yield possession of by way of exchange

  4. 4a :  to impose as punishment b :  to award by formal verdict judgment was given against the plaintiff



Seen and Heard

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


a rounded knoll or a ridge of ice

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