harness

noun
har·​ness | \ˈhär-nəs \

Definition of harness 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1a : the equipment other than a yoke of a draft animal

b : gear, equipment especially : military equipment for a horse or man

2a : occupational surroundings or routine get back into harness after a vacation

b : close association ability to work in harness with others— R. P. Brooks

3a : something that resembles a harness (as in holding or fastening something) a parachute harness

b : prefabricated wiring with insulation and terminals (see terminal entry 2 sense 3) ready to be attached (as in an ignition or lighting system) a wiring harness

4 : a part of a loom which holds and controls the heddles

harness

verb
harnessed; harnessing; harnesses

Definition of harness (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to put a harness on harnessed the ox

b : to attach by means of a harness harness the horses to the wagon

2 : to tie together : yoke must harness his mechanical apparatus to his creative mind— Andrew Buchanan

3 : utilize harness the computer's potential

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Synonyms for harness

Synonyms: Verb

apply, employ, exercise, exploit, operate, use, utilize

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Examples of harness in a Sentence

Noun

The pilot strapped himself into his harness before takeoff.

Verb

The horses were harnessed to the wagon. Engineers are finding new ways to harness the sun's energy to heat homes. The company is harnessing technology to provide better service to its customers. They harnessed the power of the waterfall to create electricity. harness anger to fight injustice
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

There, Cruise can be seen attached to a harness while making the leap. Dave Quinn, PEOPLE.com, "Tom Cruise's Ankle Is 'Still Broken' After Mission: Impossible 6 Stunt: 'I Have to Keep Going'," 26 Jan. 2018 As the sun rose on July 3, a group of 12 intergenerational activists climbed Vancouver’s Ironworkers Memorial Bridge, harnesses and gear in tow. Maia Wikler, Teen Vogue, "12 Activists Blocked an Oil Tanker Transporting From the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain Pipeline in Canada," 6 Sep. 2018 Voelker had fallen from his tree stand and become entangled in his safety harness. Fox News, "The Latest: Hunter hanging from tree 2 days was "hollering"," 31 Aug. 2018 Ford, for one, has developed a partnership with Heinz to turn tomato peels into center console storage bins, and with Jose Cuervo to use agave waste from tequila production in wiring harnesses and brackets. Katherine Lagrave, Condé Nast Traveler, "What the Road Trip Looks Like in 2030," 20 July 2018 Initially, Kreidel and Cano wanted to find a building that accommodate top rope climbing, which involves two climbers putting on harnesses and using a rope tied between them to catch falls. Rye Druzin, San Antonio Express-News, "San Antonio joins other Texas cities with its own standalone bouldering gym," 11 July 2018 Men wore wide-legged trousers and and strappy, body-baring harness-style tops while women wore a simplistic high-necked red dresses, the skirts of which splayed out in strips with each twirl. Lilah Ramzi, Vogue, "The New York City Ballet Hosts a Fall Gala to Remember With Costumes by Gareth Pugh, Alberta Ferretti, and Giles Deacon," 28 Sep. 2018 Using a treadmill, researchers adjusted metrics like stimulation settings, trainer assistance, harness support and speed. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "Paralyzed Man Walks Again With Surgical Implant," 25 Sep. 2018 Model Slick Woods pretty much tore up the Savage x Fenty runway, walking in a harness-bodysuit while very pregnant during Fashion Week. Emily Wang, Glamour, "Slick Woods Confirms She Gave Birth Right After Savage x Fenty Show During New York Fashion Week," 14 Sep. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Common sense tells us that CEOs ought to harness that power, too. Sam Walker, WSJ, "Goodbye Swaggering CEOs; Hello Mr. Rogers," 3 Nov. 2018 The engine swap was complemented by adding a 102-inch, four-blade MT propeller to harness the PT6's power. Eric Tegler, Ars Technica, "One man designed and built the ultimate bush plane," 11 Aug. 2018 The idea that viruses may be co-opted to do good rather than harm isn’t entirely new; researchers have been attempting to harness the power of viruses and bacteria for more than a century. Alice Park, Time, "Polio Virus Could Help Treat Brain Cancer. Here's How," 26 June 2018 Domestic games have been played before empty stadiums because of a ban on crowds at soccer games instituted in 2012, driven in part by fears that opposition forces could harness the power of a large public gathering. Declan Walsh, New York Times, "Even With Mo Salah in the World Cup, Egypt Can’t Seem to Catch a Break," 23 June 2018 But finally, in his 15th month, President Donald Trump is showing genuine signs of harnessing the persuasive powers of saying nothing at times, of listening, more importantly of being seen to listen. Andrew Malcolm, Anchorage Daily News, "It’s about time: Big-mouth Trump learning to listen," 6 Mar. 2018 To be sure, VS has harnessed the power of social media, too. Nicole Phelps, Vogue, "“We’re Nobody’s Third Love, We’re Their First Love”—The Architects of the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show Are Still Banking on Bombshells," 8 Nov. 2018 From atoms to algae, researchers test new ways to harness energy from nature. Discover Magazine, "Energy to Burn," 20 Sep. 2018 During the day, algae that produce the red-tide toxins stay near the surface to harness energy from sunlight. WSJ, "Corrections & Amplifications," 17 Aug. 2018

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

Noun

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

Verb

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

History and Etymology for harness

Noun

Middle English herneis baggage, gear, from Anglo-French harneis, herneis, probably from Old Norse *hernest, from herr army + nest provisions

Verb

see harness entry 1

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Statistics for harness

Last Updated

12 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for harness

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

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More Definitions for harness

harness

noun

English Language Learners Definition of harness

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a set of straps that are placed on an animal (such as a horse) so that it can pull something heavy

: a set of straps that are used to connect a person to something (such as a parachute or a seat)

harness

verb

English Language Learners Definition of harness (Entry 2 of 2)

: to put a harness on (an animal)

: to attach (an animal) to something with a harness

: to use (something) for a particular purpose

harness

noun
har·​ness | \ˈhär-nəs \

Kids Definition of harness

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the straps and fastenings placed on an animal so it can be controlled or prepared to pull a load

harness

verb
harnessed; harnessing

Kids Definition of harness (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to put straps and fastenings on I harnessed the horses.

2 : to put to work : utilize Wind can be harnessed to generate power.

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Comments on harness

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