\ ˈōn How to pronounce own (audio) \

Definition of own

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : belonging to oneself or itself usually used following a possessive case or possessive adjective cooked my own dinnerwas responsible for his own bad luck
2 used to express immediate or direct kinship an own sonan own sistermy own family


owned; owning; owns

Definition of own (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1a : to have or hold as property : possess
b : to have power or mastery over wanted to own his own life
2 : to acknowledge to be true, valid, or as claimed : admit own a debt

intransitive verb

: to acknowledge something to be true, valid, or as claimed used with to or up

Definition of own (Entry 3 of 3)

: one or ones belonging to oneself used after a possessive and without a following noun gave out books so that each of us had our owna room of your own
on one's own
1 : for or by oneself : independently of assistance or control made the decision on his own
2 : left to rely entirely on one's own resources if you mess up, you're on your own

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Synonyms & Antonyms for own

Synonyms: Verb

Antonyms: Verb

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acknowledge, admit, own, avow, confess mean to disclose against one's will or inclination. acknowledge implies the disclosing of something that has been or might be concealed. acknowledged an earlier peccadillo admit implies reluctance to disclose, grant, or concede and refers usually to facts rather than their implications. admitted the project was over budget own implies acknowledging something in close relation to oneself. must own I know little about computers avow implies boldly declaring, often in the face of hostility, what one might be expected to be silent about. avowed that he was a revolutionary confess may apply to an admission of a weakness, failure, omission, or guilt. confessed a weakness for sweets

Examples of own in a Sentence

Verb We hope to someday own our own home. She drives a red truck that was originally owned by her grandfather. He owns the rights to the band's music. The couple owns and operates the business. After everyone else denied any responsibility, he owned that he was at fault.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective He's struck by the stories but declines to share his own, for now. Amanda Ostuni, EW.com, "This Is Us recap: Miguel and the Pearsons confront complicated feeling," 7 Apr. 2021 The two largest charter networks — Friendship and KIPP DC, which collectively educate more than 11,000 students across more than a dozen campuses — opted out of the city’s testing program and implemented their own. Washington Post, "Here’s what we know about infections in D.C. schools," 7 Apr. 2021 Just as the Drive, Chip and Putt National Finals were ending Sunday at Augusta National, Phil Mickelson took to the practice ground to begin a marathon putt, iron and drive session of his own. Steve Dimeglio, The Arizona Republic, "'I've got some good things going': Mickelson still wants to compete against the best," 7 Apr. 2021 Then, the Apple Watch has a special proprietary wireless charging disc of its own, so there’s nothing else in your gadget bag that uses the same cable. Maren Estrada, BGR, "Wirelessly charge all your Apple gadgets with one 3-in-1 wireless charging station," 7 Apr. 2021 Hospital presidents at Mass General Brigham no longer have the autonomy to launch big projects on their own; instead those decisions are made at the system level, under Dr. Anne Klibanski, the company’s chief executive. BostonGlobe.com, "MGH president Peter Slavin to depart after 18 years," 7 Apr. 2021 The Valkyrie could launch ALTIUS-600s carrying surveillance equipment of their own, or even strike targets of opportunity with explosive-laden drones. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "The Air Force’s New Drone Launched a Little Baby Drone of Its Own," 7 Apr. 2021 The Hartford city council has selected 14 people, including one of its own, to take part in the charter reform process, residents’ once-in-a-decade opportunity to make significant changes to city government. Rebecca Lurye, courant.com, "Hartford begins charter reform process with appointments to revision commission," 7 Apr. 2021 Prominent Republicans have suggested a boycott of their own against those companies criticizing the law. Jeremy Beaman, Washington Examiner, "Georgia faith leaders put off business boycott but will protest The Masters," 7 Apr. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Following the disaster that was Prohibition in the US, big alcohol companies (which own 96% of all alcohol on the market) lobbied to keep nutritional labelling as ambiguous as possible. refinery29.com, "From Beaver Butt Juice To Fish Bladders, Here’s What’s Really In Your Alcohol," 7 Apr. 2021 For example, companies that own industrial real-estate shares rose 12% in 2020 because of strong demand from online retailers like Amazon.com Inc., according to Evercore ISI. Peter Grant, WSJ, "Real-Estate Losers in 2020, Like Hotel and Mall Owners, Starred in the First Quarter," 6 Apr. 2021 But for high-net-worth individuals who own properties outright without debt, there’s no one looking over their shoulders to remind them. Forbes, "What Real Estate Owners Should Know About Capital Expenses," 6 Apr. 2021 The members of the limited liability company include Cat Tran and Mark Nielsen, who own both the Wauwatosa and Bay View Hue restaurants. Hannah Kirby, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Hue Restaurant in Wauwatosa is closing this month so the owners can focus on an 'exciting' new Bay View expansion," 6 Apr. 2021 Todd Ricketts, one of the three siblings who own the team, was finance chair of the Trump Victory Committee, raising funds for Donald Trump’s reelection bid. Paul Sullivan, chicagotribune.com, "Column: Many teams — including the Chicago Cubs — will look to replace Atlanta as the site of the 2021 All-Star Game. So why not have it at Wrigley Field?," 3 Apr. 2021 The president of Pro Residential Management, Pratik Jogani, is also listed as the president or manager of the limited liability companies that own the apartment complexes that Pro Residential manages in Arizona, according to real estate records. Jessica Boehm, The Arizona Republic, "Arizona landlords who received grants to help with non-paying tenants filed hundreds of evictions anyway," 25 Mar. 2021 This would allow developing economies to begin manufacturing medical goods without waiting for—or adhering to—licensing agreements with pharmaceutical companies that own the underlying intellectual property for medicines and vaccines. Tim Fernholz, Quartz, "Wealthy countries are choosing pharma profits over global immunity," 15 Mar. 2021 An expropriation campaign, launched in 2019, is still gathering signatures to force a citywide vote on whether to oblige companies that own 3,000 properties or more, such as Vonovia, to sell them to the debt-laden city government. The Economist, "After a year, Berlin’s experiment with rent control is a failure," 9 Mar. 2021

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


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


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

Pronoun, singular or plural in construction

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

History and Etymology for own

Adjective, Verb, and Pronoun, singular or plural in construction

Middle English owen, from Old English āgen; akin to Old High German eigan own, Old Norse eiginn, Old English āgan to possess — more at owe

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Time Traveler for own

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for own

Last Updated

9 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Own.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/own. Accessed 17 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for own



English Language Learners Definition of own

 (Entry 1 of 3)

used to say that something belongs or relates to a particular person or thing and to no other always used after a possessive (such as "my," "your," or "their")
used to stress the fact that a person does or makes something without the help of other people always used after a possessive



English Language Learners Definition of own (Entry 2 of 3)

: to have (something) as property : to legally possess (something)
old-fashioned : to admit that something is true



English Language Learners Definition of own (Entry 3 of 3)

: something or someone that belongs or relates to a particular person or thing and to no other


\ ˈōn How to pronounce own (audio) \

Kids Definition of own

 (Entry 1 of 2)

used to show the fact that something belongs to or relates to a particular person or thing and no other I have my own room. The hotel has its own theater.


owned; owning

Kids Definition of own (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to have or hold as property She owns two cars.
2 : to admit that something is true He owned to being scared.

Legal Definition of own

: to have or hold as property especially : to have title to own property

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More from Merriam-Webster on own

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Nglish: Translation of own for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of own for Arabic Speakers

Comments on own

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