pro·​long | \ prə-ˈlȯŋ \
prolonged; prolonging; prolongs

Definition of prolong

transitive verb

1 : to lengthen in time : continue
2 : to lengthen in extent, scope, or range

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Other Words from prolong

prolongation \ (ˌ)prō-​ˌlȯŋ-​ˈgā-​shən , prə-​ \ noun
prolonger \ prə-​ˈlȯŋ-​ər \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for prolong

extend, lengthen, prolong, protract mean to draw out or add to so as to increase in length. extend and lengthen imply a drawing out in space or time but extend may also imply increase in width, scope, area, or range. extend a vacation extend welfare services lengthen a skirt lengthen the workweek prolong suggests chiefly increase in duration especially beyond usual limits. prolonged illness protract adds to prolong implications of needlessness, vexation, or indefiniteness. protracted litigation

Examples of prolong in a Sentence

Additives are used to prolong the shelf life of packaged food. High interest rates were prolonging the recession.

Recent Examples on the Web

The Belgium international has just one year left to run on his contract and is reportedly uninterested in prolonging his stay at Stamford Bridge., "Chelsea Linked With Leicester World Cup Hero as Doubts Over Long-Term Future of Star Man Remain," 9 July 2018 These Council members appear more interested in prolonging a petty political fight with a mayor who's term-limited in 3½ years rather than supporting a stadium project that will impact the city for generations. Jason Williams,, "PX column: John Cranley tries to keep West End stadium hopes alive amid City Hall chaos," 22 Mar. 2018 In addition to Soundtrack of America, there’s Dragon Spring Phoenix Rise, a futuristic kung-fu musical about a Chinese sect in Queens that has the power to prolong human life. Dodie Kazanjian, Vogue, "Inside The Shed, Manhattan's New State-of-the-Art Cultural Venue," 12 Dec. 2018 Using pressure from sunlight along with strategic fuel use, engineers were able to prolong the lifetime of Kepler. John Wenz, Popular Mechanics, "The Planet-Hunting Kepler Space Telescope May Be Gone for Good," 25 Oct. 2018 This may make the drink slower to digest and absorb, therefore potentially prolonging the effects of the caffeine. Jaclyn London, Ms, Rd, Cdn, Good Housekeeping, "The Truth About Bulletproof Coffee, According to a Nutritionist," 5 Nov. 2018 The forecast for Florence’s steering also calls for a slowdown in forward motion as landfall nears, which will prolong the heavy rain/flooding potential across the Mid-Atlantic, including inland, so there will be more than just coastal impacts. Janice Dean, Fox News, "Hurricane Florence could cause catastrophic damage to the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic while Olivia will impact Hawaii," 10 Sep. 2018 As the holidays come to a close, cold-weather clothing prolongs the cozy mood. Vogue, "Day 12: Embrace the Cold," 12 Nov. 2018 The results should prolong Netflix’s reign as one of the best-performing stocks on the Street, giving it leeway to spend billions of dollars more on original programming. Recode Staff, Recode, "Recode Daily: The hot new thing among the megawealthy — avoiding taxes by doing good," 17 Oct. 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for prolong

Middle English, from Middle French prolonguer, from Late Latin prolongare, from Latin pro- forward + longus long

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Statistics for prolong

Last Updated

17 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for prolong

The first known use of prolong was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for prolong



English Language Learners Definition of prolong

: to make (something) last or continue for a longer time


pro·​long | \ prə-ˈlȯŋ \
prolonged; prolonging

Kids Definition of prolong

: to make longer than usual or expected Medicines prolonged his life.

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More from Merriam-Webster on prolong

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for prolong

Spanish Central: Translation of prolong

Nglish: Translation of prolong for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of prolong for Arabic Speakers

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