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 preservability (audio) \ noun
preservable \ pri-​ˈzər-​və-​bəl How to pronounce preservable (audio) \ adjective
preservation \ ˌpre-​zər-​ˈvā-​shən How to pronounce preservation (audio) \ noun
preserver \ pri-​ˈzər-​vər How to pronounce preserver (audio) \ noun

Synonyms for preserve

Synonyms: Verb

conserve, keep up, maintain, save

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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

There are organisms that live deep inside the caves that are an essential part of the environment that Beckley is trying to preserve. Mario Sanelli, The Denver Post, "Glenwood Springs joins Aspen as only Colorado cities completely powered by renewable energy," 3 June 2019 According to listing agent Bob Hassett, Rawling has decided to move on from the project after trying to preserve the home. Megan Barber, Curbed, "Spiraling Frank Lloyd Wright house can be yours for $12.9M," 4 Sep. 2018 Check out this Twitter thread to see the work people are doing to try to preserve and recreate the clearinghouse. Dylan Scott, Vox, "The Trump administration is about to delete an important medical resource," 16 July 2018 When it was all said and done, Bayside paraded seven boys to the mound, three of them showing up on the hill in the top of the sixth, trying to preserve a shaky lead. Robert Avery, Houston Chronicle, "Bayside 11s defeat Texas City 12-11 to clinch berth in District 14 title contest," 28 June 2018 The law is supposed to protect the American shipbuilding industry and thereby preserve a national security interest. Costas Paris, WSJ, "Philadelphia Shipyard Fights Again for Its Life," 17 Apr. 2019 Many condiments Condiments like ketchup or mustard are fine to store at room temperature because their high sugar, salt, and vinegar contents keep them preserved. Audrey Bruno, SELF, "12 Foods You’re Probably Refrigerating That You Actually Shouldn’t," 16 Apr. 2019 Player of the game: Royals reliever Brian Flynn was pushed into a mosh pit and doused in water in the Royals' clubhouse after the game for his work preserving the 6-2 lead the Royals had when Kennedy departed. Maria Torres, kansascity, "‘Fun-to-watch’ Mondesi continues to progress as Royals snap losing streak, beat Twins," 10 July 2018 This would both preserve the information and tell responders and investigators exactly where the airplane went down. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "Why We Need a New Black Box," 7 May 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Her Sweet Whispers are crisp, yet airy little cookies with key lime, passion fruit, blackberry or raspberry preserves tucked inside; more flavors are on the way. Florence Fabricant, New York Times, "Light as Air and Filled With Flavor," 2 July 2018 The mother and daughter northern white rhinos that live in a Kenya wildlife preserve are not capable of bearing calves. Time, "A Pregnant Rhino in San Diego Could Help Save a Related Subspecies," 19 May 2018 The volunteer tourism program took place on a 40,000 acre game preserve. Mary Jane Brewer, cleveland.com, "LOCAL LEGEND Judge Dale Chase," 8 Mar. 2018 Alaska has 10 national preserves covering nearly 37,000 square miles. CBS News, "Trump administration moves to allow hunters to lure brown bears with bacon, doughnuts," 22 May 2018 The bridge allows for easier access to the preserves by vehicle, walking or biking. Michelle Mullins, Naperville Sun, "Naperville News Digest," 25 May 2018 Similarly, the preserves display perfectly represents all the colors of the season, according to Jo, while the weaving and paintbrushes symbolize life and creativity, simultaneously. Taylor Mead, House Beautiful, "You’ve Got To See How Joanna Gaines Plans Magnolia’s Fall Displays," 29 Aug. 2018 People from both nations walk their dogs, and a high school track team runs laps in the preserve, jointly managed by Washington state and the province of British Columbia. Larry Bleiberg, USA TODAY, "10 great places to explore along the Canadian border," 29 June 2018 Pontoon and canoe rides, youth fishing derby, biking, geocaching and nature trail walks will be available in the preserve. Houston Chronicle, "Family Fun: Art Car Parade and Houston Japan Festival," 11 Apr. 2018

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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Statistics for preserve

Last Updated

13 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for preserve

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

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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 preservation (audio) \ noun

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Comments on preserve

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