need

noun
\ ˈnēd How to pronounce need (audio) \

Definition of need

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : necessary duty : obligation no need to apologize the need to pay taxes— Peter Scott
2a : a lack of something requisite, desirable, or useful a building adequate for the company's needs
b : a physiological or psychological requirement for the well-being of an organism health and education needs
3 : a condition requiring supply or relief The house is in need of repair. refugees in need of shelter and food
4 : lack of the means of subsistence (see subsistence sense 2) : poverty The community program provides for those in need.

need

verb
needed; needing; needs or (auxiliary) need

Definition of need (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to be needful or necessary
2 : to be in want

transitive verb

: to be in need of : require

auxiliary verb

: be under necessity or obligation to you need not answer she need only wait

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Synonyms & Antonyms for need

Synonyms: Noun

absence, lack, needfulness, want

Synonyms: Verb

bear, challenge, claim, demand, necessitate, require, take, want, warrant

Antonyms: Verb

have, hold

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Examples of need in a Sentence

Noun

You can always call me at home if the need arises. These new methods reduce the need to use harmful chemicals on crops. We find that there is still a need for further discussion. There is a great need for change. Our experienced staff will go out of their way to meet your every need. He has trouble expressing his emotional needs. I felt a need to take control of the situation. a need to be loved She has an overwhelming need to be liked and respected. I don't feel the need to defend my decision.

Verb

I need some advice. What do you think of this dress? I just need a couple of minutes to get ready. Most babies need at least 12 hours of sleep a day. We badly need a vacation. Further research is urgently needed if we are to find a cure. Another delay is the last thing I need! Men? Who needs them?! I certainly don't.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Rendering the scene on a remote server and then streaming it to a headset eliminates the need for a powerful CPU. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "5G could be the foundation of next-gen 'cloud VR'," 27 Mar. 2019 If the infection is mild, there may not be any need for treatment, the Mayo Clinic says. Sarah Jacoby, SELF, "Avocados Recalled in 6 States for Possible Listeria Contamination," 25 Mar. 2019 Although Target will be closed, there's no need to stress. Jennifer Aldrich, Country Living, "Is Target Open on Easter? Here Are the Retailer's Holiday Hours," 18 Mar. 2019 Due to a prior owner's renovation of the apartment's original 1928 design , there wasn't a need for any construction. Amanda Sims, House Beautiful, "You'll Want to Borrow This Napping Nook for Your Own Home," 20 Feb. 2019 There was this tangible need for new Jenner content, something to either confirm or deny rumors that had been circulating for months, leaving the biggest stans and curious onlookers for answers. Julia Alexander, The Verge, "Kylie Jenner returned as online queen in 2018 after disappearing for nearly a year," 21 Dec. 2018 So if the powers Walker and Evers share are really the same, there’d be no need for a Venn diagram at all. Aaron Rupar, Vox, "Scott Walker accidentally reveals he doesn’t get Venn diagrams while downplaying GOP’s power grab," 14 Dec. 2018 For those who are upset about the sculpture loosing its prime location, no need to worry. Liz Stinson, Curbed, "Tourist magnet ‘I Amsterdam’ sign has been removed," 6 Dec. 2018 Between family values and growing up in sunny Arizona, Philipps has always been aware of the need for sun protection. Leah Prinzivalli, Allure, "Busy Philipps Reveals Why She Takes a Bath Every Single Night," 22 Mar. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

These parts would need to be made somewhere else in a way that doesn’t slow down production of the jets for the U.S. and international customers. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "The U.S. Is Pausing Deliveries of F-35 Equipment to Turkey," 3 Apr. 2019 The directive would need to be implemented by all EU member states into their own national laws, leaving room for separate interpretations. Raf Casert, The Seattle Times, "EU parliament backs copyright bill targeting US tech giants," 27 Mar. 2019 Sam: If something ever happened to me, my wife would need easy access to our money. Amanda Mitchell, Marie Claire, "Three Kids and a Health Crisis on One Paycheck," 21 Feb. 2019 Designed to pass the most common building code requirements in the U.S., Avrame USA works with each client to determine local requirements and makes adjustments as needed. Megan Barber, Curbed, "Affordable A-frame house can be built by just two people," 11 Jan. 2019 Plus: Brazil now offers an e-visa service—U.S. citizens no longer need to go through the once time-consuming process of obtaining entry rights. Nick Remsen, Vogue, "Rio de Janeiro, Right Now: 5 Reasons to Visit the Extraordinary Brazilian City," 19 Mar. 2019 While our personal lives may need a bit of replenishing, our homes deserve the same kind of attention. Lucia Tonelli, ELLE Decor, "The Hottest Home Trends of 2019, According to Jonathan Adler," 2 Jan. 2019 With engine temperatures being pushed up for better emissions control, the antioxidants are needed to prevent oxidation (and, therefore, thickening) of oil. Paul Weissler, Popular Mechanics, "How to Pick the Right Motor Oil for Your Car," 14 Feb. 2019 Even those of us who live our lives through our gut needed a break from eating. Pilar Guzmán, Condé Nast Traveler, "South Africa’s Other Big Five," 20 Dec. 2018

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

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for need

Noun and Verb

Middle English ned, from Old English nīed, nēd; akin to Old High German nōt distress, need, Old Prussian nautin need

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Learn More about need

Dictionary Entries near need

neddy

Nederlands

née

need

need-be

needcessity

needfire

Statistics for need

Last Updated

9 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for need

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

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More Definitions for need

need

noun

English Language Learners Definition of need

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a situation in which someone or something must do or have something
: something that a person must have : something that is needed in order to live or succeed or be happy
: a strong feeling that you must have or do something

need

verb

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

: to be in a condition or situation in which you must have (something) : to require (something)
used to say that some action is necessary usually followed by to + verb
used to say that it is important and necessary for someone to do something followed by to + verb

need

verb
\ ˈnēd How to pronounce need (audio) \
needed; needing

Kids Definition of need

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to suffer from the lack of something important to life or health Give to those who need.
2 : to be necessary Something needs to be done.
3 : to be without : require I need advice. He bought what he needed.

need

noun

Kids Definition of need (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : something that must be done : obligation An electrician understands the need to be careful.
2 : a lack of something necessary, useful, or desired After losing his job, he was in great need.
3 : something necessary or desired Our daily needs are few.

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More from Merriam-Webster on need

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with need

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for need

Spanish Central: Translation of need

Nglish: Translation of need for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of need for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about need

Comments on need

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