\ ˈlend How to pronounce lend (audio) \
lent\ ˈlent How to pronounce lend (audio) \; lending

Definition of lend

transitive verb

1a(1) : to give for temporary use on condition that the same or its equivalent be returned lend me your pen
(2) : to put at another's temporary disposal lent us their services
b : to let out (money) for temporary use on condition of repayment with interest The bank lent him the money for home improvements.
2a : to give the assistance or support of : afford, furnish a dispassionate and scholarly manner which lends great force to his criticismsThe Times Literary Supplement (London)
b : to adapt or apply (oneself) readily : accommodate a topic that lends itself admirably to class discussion

intransitive verb

: to make a loan

Other Words from lend

lendable \ ˈlen-​də-​bəl How to pronounce lend (audio) \ adjective
lender noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for lend



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Loan vs. Lend: Usage Guide

The verb loan is one of the words English settlers brought to America and continued to use after it had died out in Britain. Its use was soon noticed by British visitors and somewhat later by the New England literati, who considered it a bit provincial. It was flatly declared wrong in 1870 by a popular commentator, who based his objection on etymology. A later scholar showed that the commentator was ignorant of Old English and thus unsound in his objection, but by then it was too late, as the condemnation had been picked up by many other commentators. Although a surprising number of critics still voice objections, loan is entirely standard as a verb. You should note that it is used only literally; lend is the verb used for figurative expressions, such as "lending a hand" or "lending enchantment."

Examples of lend in a Sentence

I lent our ladder to the neighbors. The bank wouldn't lend us the money. Many banks won't lend to people with bad credit. They are glad to lend their support to worthy causes.
Recent Examples on the Web Features such as the glaring headlamps, twin tail pipes and dual power domes on the hood lend the C 300 immediate curb appeal. Nicolas Stecher, Robb Report, 17 May 2022 Desert color combos of pink, orange, rust, and navy—including new paint on the hutch—lend warmth. Mallory Abreu, Better Homes & Gardens, 17 May 2022 While these might be options for picnickers and hikers, local mosquito control, as well as some private businesses, lend their support in the broader battle against the potentially disease-carrying bugs. Karl Schneider, The Indianapolis Star, 16 May 2022 His plan seemed to lend more credibility to his offer. Washington Post, 25 Apr. 2022 Here’s Diana hobnobbing on her own, with one telling shot of Graydon Carter (who, at Vanity Fair, did more than anyone to lend our fascination with the Royals a tony credibility). Owen Gleiberman, Variety, 20 Jan. 2022 Gain Credibility Being a reliable source of insight and information to influence others can define you as an industry leader and lend credibility to both you and your business. Martin Rowinski, Forbes, 27 Dec. 2021 Giuliani also sought a legislative hearing that would lend credibility to his claims of widespread fraud in the election. Ronald J. Hansen, The Arizona Republic, 17 Nov. 2021 Onlookers saw Schroeder's move as something that could inadvertently lend more credibility to the witness in the eyes of jurors. Bill Glauber, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 16 Nov. 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of lend

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a(1)

History and Etymology for lend

Middle English lenen, (15th century) lenden "to give, bestow, give for temporary use," going back to Old English lǣnan, derivative of lǣn "something lent, grant, gift" — more at loan entry 1

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Time Traveler for lend

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near lend



lend a hand

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Statistics for lend

Last Updated

21 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Lend.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/lend. Accessed 26 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for lend


\ ˈlend How to pronounce lend (audio) \
lent\ ˈlent \; lending

Kids Definition of lend

2 : to give usually for a time Volunteers lent help to flood victims.
3 : to add something that improves or makes more attractive Tomato lends color to a salad.

Other Words from lend

lender noun


lent; lending

Legal Definition of lend

transitive verb

1 : to give for temporary use on condition that the same or its equivalent be returned
2 : to let out (money) for temporary use on condition of repayment with interest

intransitive verb

: to make a loan

Other Words from lend

lendable adjective
lender noun

More from Merriam-Webster on lend

Nglish: Translation of lend for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of lend for Arabic Speakers


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