preserve

verb
pre·​serve | \ pri-ˈzərv How to pronounce preserve (audio) \
preserved; preserving

Definition of preserve

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to keep safe from injury, harm, or destruction : protect
2a : to keep alive, intact, or free from decay
b : maintain
3a : to keep or save from decomposition
b : to can, pickle, or similarly prepare for future use
4 : to keep up and reserve for personal or special use

intransitive verb

1 : to make preserves
2 : to raise and protect game for purposes of sport
3 : to be able to be preserved (as by canning)

preserve

noun

Definition of preserve (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : fruit canned or made into jams or jellies or cooked whole or in large pieces in a syrup so as to keep its shape often used in plural
2 : an area restricted for the protection and preservation of natural resources (such as animals or plants) a game preserve for regulated hunting or fishing nature preserves
3 : something regarded as reserved for certain persons

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Other Words from preserve

Verb

preservability \ pri-​ˌzər-​və-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce preserve (audio) \ noun
preservable \ pri-​ˈzər-​və-​bəl How to pronounce preserve (audio) \ adjective
preserver \ pri-​ˈzər-​vər How to pronounce preserve (audio) \ noun

Synonyms for preserve

Synonyms: Verb

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Examples of preserve in a Sentence

Verb The fossil was well preserved. These laws are intended to help preserve our natural resources. They are fighting to preserve their rights as citizens. The peaches are preserved in syrup. Salt can be used to preserve meat. Noun a jar of strawberry preserve Game preserves allow only carefully controlled hunting and fishing. The military was once an all-male preserve.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Simsbury and Southington voters on Tuesday approved multimillion-dollar initiatives to preserve open space and head off the threat of new subdivisions bringing more students into their schools. Don Stacom, courant.com, "Voters choose open space over new housing: Simsbury to help buy Meadowood, Southington to preserve golf course," 5 May 2021 The city’s 20-year strategic plan to grow, preserve and manage its urban forest includes increasing the tree canopy cover more than 5 percent, to 33.5 percent by 2035. John Benson, cleveland, "Lakewood receives $50,000 tree canopy grant," 5 May 2021 Perkins would like to preserve the bones and determine whether the remains can help scientists better understand the planet's history. Kaelan Deese, Washington Examiner, "Las Vegas pool installation reveals estimated 14,000-year-old fossils," 1 May 2021 Instead of spending millions of dollars in taxpayer money to tear down the 55-year-old bridge, Pregracke wants to raise private funds to preserve and transform it. Bill Ruthhart, chicagotribune.com, "Bison roaming a bridge over the Mississippi River? ‘Crazy’ idea for national park near Quad Cities gains momentum," 29 Apr. 2021 Our job is to preserve and conserve, to uphold everybody’s voice, everybody’s grief. Ashley Tyner, Vogue, "What Does It Mean to Build—And Preserve—A BLM Memorial?," 29 Apr. 2021 The permit helps fund Great Parks' mission to preserve and protect natural resources and supports ongoing conservation efforts. Luann Gibbs, The Enquirer, "Top 5 things to do in Cincinnati this weekend: April 30-May 2," 28 Apr. 2021 Merchants and community leaders advocating for the transformation say the goal is to preserve and celebrate that diversity, not force those residents out by gentrifying the area. David Garrick, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Plan would transform car-centric El Cajon Blvd into pedestrian-friendly area," 26 Apr. 2021 Arizonans want to preserve and improve our natural environment as temperatures continue to rise. Rachel Leingang, The Arizona Republic, "How divided are Arizonans on major issues? Not very, new survey finds," 21 Apr. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun At a Palm Springs wildlife preserve, a group of Arctic wolves began howling during Tuesday’s wee hours. Lila Seidman, Los Angeles Times, "Battered coyote pup rescued by hikers in Palm Springs is on road to ‘extraordinary recovery’," 11 May 2021 The preserve is mostly flat, with sharp turns in its paths. Chloe Bennett, Dallas News, "Here’s a list of Garland parks and trails to visit this Earth Day," 21 Apr. 2021 On April 6, Yates said, a citizen discovered the family dog and a backpack belonging to Callender at a local nature preserve and returned them to the family. Carol Robinson | Crobinson@al.com, al, "Missing Homewood man found dead in Shades Creek," 8 Apr. 2021 Named after a local Cherokee Native American, Sawnee, the preserve is 821 acres of scenic space that includes 11 miles of hiking trails, picnic areas and an interactive visitor center. Nancy Clanton, ajc, "5 fun ways to spend a day in Cumming," 5 Apr. 2021 The preserve is on State Trust land, but a permit is not required. Mare Czinar, The Arizona Republic, "Easy hike in lush Arizona desert preserve has a botanical garden feel. Here's how to do it," 12 Mar. 2021 The 90-acre nature preserve is off Seatonville Road in the Fern Creek area. Kirby Adams, The Courier-Journal, "PeteFest may be the only music festival in Louisville this summer. Here's what to know," 9 Mar. 2021 The idyllic nature preserve is free to the public and open from sunrise to sunset. Zoe Denenberg, Southern Living, "Gear Up for a Family-Friendly Adventure Weekend in Port Aransas, Texas," 8 Mar. 2021 The preserve is around 8,000 acres of forests, clifts, and streams, and a big destination for rock climbers, with about 50,000 climbers each year who check out the 1,000 climbing routes. Alex Frank, Vogue, "Is Outdoor Adventure the Key to Inner Peace? Arc’teryx Thinks So," 27 Jan. 2021

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

Verb

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

Noun

1698, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for preserve

Verb

Middle English, from Medieval Latin praeservare, from Late Latin, to observe beforehand, from Latin prae- + servare to keep, guard, observe — more at conserve

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Time Traveler for preserve

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for preserve

Last Updated

12 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Preserve.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/preserve. Accessed 16 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for preserve

preserve

verb

English Language Learners Definition of preserve

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to keep (something) in its original state or in good condition
: to keep (something) safe from harm or loss
: to prevent (food) from decaying

preserve

noun

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

: a sweet food made of fruit cooked in sugar
: an area where plants, animals, minerals, etc., are protected
: an activity, job, interest, etc., that is available to or considered suitable for only a particular group of people

preserve

verb
pre·​serve | \ pri-ˈzərv How to pronounce preserve (audio) \
preserved; preserving

Kids Definition of preserve

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to keep or save from injury, loss, or ruin : protect The laws will help preserve rain forests.
2 : to prepare (as by canning or pickling) fruits or vegetables to be kept for future use
3 : maintain sense 2, continue preserve silence

Other Words from preserve

preserver noun

preserve

noun

Kids Definition of preserve (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a sweet food made of fruit cooked in sugar often used in pl. strawberry preserves
2 : an area where land and animals are protected

preserve

transitive verb
pre·​serve | \ pri-ˈzərv How to pronounce preserve (audio) \
preserved; preserving

Medical Definition of preserve

1 : to keep alive, intact, or free from decay
2 : to keep or save from decomposition

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preserve

transitive verb
pre·​serve | \ pri-ˈzərv How to pronounce preserve (audio) \
preserved; preserving

Legal Definition of preserve

1 : to keep safe from injury, harm, or destruction expenses necessary to preserve the property
2a : to keep valid, intact, or in existence (as pending a proceeding) the right of a trial by jury shall be preservedU.S. Constitution amend. VII the dismissal of a chapter 7 case…reinstates certain transfers voided or preserved in the case— J. H. Williamson
b : to maintain for use or consideration at a later time especially by keeping a record of deposed the witness to preserve her testimony a party has the option of preserving the objection raised— J. H. Friedenthal et al.

Other Words from preserve

preservation \ ˌpre-​zər-​ˈvā-​shən How to pronounce preserve (audio) \ noun

Comments on preserve

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