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
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
preserver \ pri-​ˈzər-​vər How to pronounce preserver (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 In general, the quicker the treatment, the more nervous tissue can be preserved. Author: Evan Bush, Anchorage Daily News, "‘Where are the patients?’ People are avoiding doctors, hospitals because of coronavirus worries," 26 May 2020 Under Tito, much of Fruška Gora's forest was preserved as a national park. Sarah Souli, Travel + Leisure, "The Best European Wine Regions You've Never Heard Of," 25 May 2020 Dash delves into the clashes between Nana Peazant (played by Cora Lee Day), the elderly matriarch preserving a rich and distinct tradition, and her descendants urging for the drastic change of moving to big, far-off cities. David Sims, The Atlantic, "30 Movies That Are Unlike Anything You’ve Seen Before," 23 May 2020 Curators will preserve objects, photographs and documents that will live permanently in the museum's collection. Ryan W. Miller, USA TODAY, "Coronavirus live updates: Trump says he won't 'close the country' if there's a new wave; Alaska reopens; Memorial Day travel will be 'weak'," 22 May 2020 With his parents gone, the noble name of Snow must be preserved at all costs. Dallas News, "Suzanne Collins’ ‘The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes’ delivers," 22 May 2020 The timing of Saez's decision, following a day after the Belmont Stakes was moved to June 20, preserves his opportunity to ride in all of the Triple Crown races. Tim Sullivan, The Courier-Journal, "Jockey Luis Saez drops appeal of suspension from 2019 Kentucky Derby disqualification," 21 May 2020 Meanwhile, the Trump administration’s priorities are preserving the Trump administration at the expense of everyone else. Jessica M. Goldstein, The New Republic, "When Will We Grieve the Covid Dead?," 20 May 2020 The Democratic bill would preserve existing state privacy laws, while the Republican bill would overrule any state-level legislation. Rebecca Robbins, STAT, "Federal legislation to protect health data has made little progress. Will that change in the Covid-19 era?," 20 May 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Just to the west of the preserve, Waukesha State Bank owns a 30-acre parcel west of Highway C near Stonecroft Drive. Jeff Rumage, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "A fundraising campaign could lead to a 131-acre natural recreation area along Lake Michigan's shoreline in Port Washington," 20 May 2020 On the Peninsula, San Mateo County Parks has reopened 13 of its 23 parks, and the Midpeninsula Open Space District has reopened all of its 26 preserves. Tom Stienstra, SFChronicle.com, "Salmon fishing opens in SF, Berkeley — with social distancing rules," 19 May 2020 When the temperature heats up, a few hundred people visit at the river a day, according to Jack Thompson, manager of the preserve. Kailyn Brown, Los Angeles Times, "As temperatures heat up in the Inland Empire and farther east, pools remain closed due to coronavirus," 22 Apr. 2020 After taking in Little River Falls, explore more of the preserve by taking an adjoining trail (just off the parking lot) to Martha’s Falls. al, "Take a road trip to see North Alabama’s many waterfalls," 17 Apr. 2020 Our tours are held outdoors and our 50 acre preserve provides plenty of area for social distance. Kayleigh Roberts, Marie Claire, "What Happened to Bhagavan "Doc" Antle from 'Tiger King'?," 27 Mar. 2020 Our tours are held outdoors and our 50 acre preserve provides plenty of area for social distance. Gina Vaynshteyn, refinery29.com, "Doc Antle’s Park From Tiger King Is Open During The COVID-19 Pandemic," 27 Mar. 2020 Scott is also thinking beyond Yahoo Groups to the dozens of smaller sites his team preserves each day. Hannah Knowles, Washington Post, "These crusaders want to preserve ‘human culture’ online. Their latest target: Yahoo Groups.," 11 Dec. 2019 Add to that the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District, Cook County and its forest preserves, Chicago’s community college system and, for good measure, your local mosquito abatement district. Kristen Mcqueary, chicagotribune.com, "Column: Twitter exchange with Cook County assessor sums up outrage and exodus: Tax hikes are paying for debt, not services.," 2 Dec. 2019

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

29 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Preserve.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/preserve. Accessed 5 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for preserve

preserve

verb
How to pronounce preserve (audio)

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
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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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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