mod·​ern·​ize | \ ˈmä-dər-ˌnīz How to pronounce modernize (audio) \
modernized; modernizing

Definition of modernize

transitive verb

: to make modern (as in taste, style, or usage)

intransitive verb

: to adopt modern ways

Other Words from modernize

modernizer noun

Synonyms for modernize


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Examples of modernize in a Sentence

We're modernizing our kitchen with a new oven, refrigerator, and dishwasher. The country recently announced plans to begin modernizing its army. The school needs a building with modernized classrooms. Older companies will need to modernize quickly if they are to survive in today's economy.
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Recent Examples on the Web But the same review scrapped a years-long effort to modernize many of the 759 Warriors. David Axe, Forbes, 3 Nov. 2021 The new software is part of a two-decade effort to modernize the country’s air traffic control system. Aarian Marshall, Wired, 28 Sep. 2021 The change is California’s latest effort to modernize the language of its laws. NBC News, 25 Sep. 2021 The change is California's latest effort to modernize the language of its laws., 24 Sep. 2021 The legislation and compacts signed by Gov. Ducey in April were the culmination of a multi-year effort to modernize an industry that has become a critical component of the state's growing economy. Ryan Randazzo, The Arizona Republic, 6 Sep. 2021 At $360 million, the project is a massive effort to modernize the 1998 stadium and improve attendee experiences, said Danny Lopez, vice president of external relations and communications for Pacers Sports & Entertainment. London Gibson, The Indianapolis Star, 21 July 2021 Instead, the plan outlines an effort to modernize existing roads, build networks that are more resilient to extreme weather and address long-standing racial injustices in urban road design. Washington Post, 25 Mar. 2021 Klamath Project irrigators and irrigation districts could use that money to modernize their systems and reduce water demand. oregonlive, 30 Nov. 2021

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

1716, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

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Time Traveler for modernize

Time Traveler

The first known use of modernize was in 1716

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Dictionary Entries Near modernize



modern languages

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Statistics for modernize

Last Updated

22 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Modernize.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for modernize



English Language Learners Definition of modernize

: to make (something) modern and more suited to present styles or needs
: to become modern : to begin using the newest information, methods, or technology


mod·​ern·​ize | \ ˈmä-dər-ˌnīz How to pronounce modernize (audio) \
modernized; modernizing

Kids Definition of modernize

: to make or become new and different or suitable for the present time

More from Merriam-Webster on modernize

Nglish: Translation of modernize for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of modernize for Arabic Speakers


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