pro·​vi·​sion | \ prə-ˈvi-zhən How to pronounce provision (audio) \

Definition of provision

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : the act or process of providing
b : the fact or state of being prepared beforehand
c : a measure taken beforehand to deal with a need or contingency : preparation made provision for replacements
2 : a stock of needed materials or supplies especially : a stock of food usually used in plural


pro·​vi·​sion | \ prə-ˈvi-zhən How to pronounce provision (audio) \
provisioned; provisioning\ prə-​ˈvi-​zhə-​niŋ How to pronounce provision (audio) , -​ˈvizh-​niŋ \

Definition of provision (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to supply with needed materials (such as food) : to supply with provisions

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Examples of provision in a Sentence

Noun The President, of all people, should know how difficult it is to take care of basic things like, say, prescription drugs for the elderly or shelter from the storm—especially if your government places a low priority on the efficient provision of public services and a high priority on the care and feeding of cronies … — Joe Klein, Time, 6 Feb. 2006 Nothing was overlooked. There was a fallback position, a fail-safe provision, for any contingency. — Gary Wills, New York Times Book Review, 1 Apr. 2001 They wheedled the American Congress into awarding entry terms more favorable than those enjoyed by any other state, including two unique provisions: Texas and not the federal government would own all public lands, and the state would retain forever the right to divide into five smaller states if that proved attractive, each one to have two senators and a proportionate number of representatives. — James A. Michener, Texas, 1985 Provisions should be made for regular inspections. He made provisions to donate part of his fortune to charity after he died. You should make provision for emergencies. I carried my provisions in one large backpack. We brought enough provisions to last the entire trip. Verb Few modern eaters consume such a wide range of plants, fruits, and animals, even when provisioned by a vast international or multi-ethnic marketplace. — Donna R. Gabaccia, We Are What We Eat, 1998 But biographies, like translations, are rarely provisioned to last forever, for they reflect the world of their authors as much as their subjects. — Morris Dickstein, New York Times Book Review, 1 Feb. 1998 As the cubs began to feed more regularly on meat, she provisioned them with hares, hyraxes, an Egyptian mongoose, and guinea fowl. — John A. Cavallo, Natural History, February 1990 They stopped to provision the ship. the climbers were sufficiently provisioned to withstand just about any mountaineering emergency See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun On Tuesday, Senate lawmakers tacked an unexpected provision onto a must-pass FDA bill — one that has the potential to seriously shake up the market for CBD, Nick reports. Rachel Cohrs, STAT, 24 May 2022 The settlement requires adequate food, access to drinking water and provision of medical assistance and other necessities for children. Dezimey Kum, USA TODAY, 20 May 2022 The problem is exacerbated in large organizations because those with the knowledge to build and provision environments simply can’t keep up with the volume of requests. Edan Evantal, Forbes, 20 May 2022 Tuesday’s action comes with conditions, including a one-year sunset provision. Brian Maffly, The Salt Lake Tribune, 18 May 2022 The Act's second and, supporters say, most significant provision would require consideration of cumulative impacts for projects requiring permits under the Clean Air Act and Clean Water Act. Lindsey Botts, The Arizona Republic, 16 May 2022 But the administration has also said that the great majority of such loans are for less than $250,000 and therefore the provision Cruz challenged does not apply. Jessica Gresko,, 16 May 2022 But the Biden administration has said that the great majority of such loans are for less than $250,000 and therefore the provision Cruz challenged does not apply. Jessica Gresko, Chron, 16 May 2022 But the administration has also said that the great majority of such loans are for less than $250,000 and therefore the provision Cruz challenged does not apply. Jessica Gresko, ajc, 16 May 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The modern enterprise likely uses hundreds of different applications across its tech stack, presenting a significant burden for IT, HR and security teams to quickly onboard and provision new hires. Rich Waldron, Forbes, 12 Oct. 2021 This enables customers to easily provision a cluster with predefined configurations, policies, and workloads. Janakiram Msv, Forbes, 9 Sep. 2021 VMware has built Tanzu Mission Control to provision and manage external Kubernetes clusters, including those running on Azure. Janakiram Msv, Forbes, 8 Nov. 2021 Its pleas were usually unheeded, leaving the Confederation badly in arrears and unable to provision the army. Jay Cost, WSJ, 28 Oct. 2021 However, for production environments, customers need VMware vSphere 7.0 or above to provision and manage clusters. Janakiram Msv, Forbes, 9 Sep. 2021 Civo claims to provision a Kubernetes cluster within 90 seconds. Janakiram Msv, Forbes, 8 June 2021 The launch of the Tianhe, or Heavenly Harmony, module is the first of 11 missions to build and provision the station and send up a three-person crew by the end of next year., 14 May 2021 Unlike IaaS, where only administrators and operators were expected to build and provision virtual machines, Containerization brought the responsibility of packaging the code and building the container images to developers. Janakiram Msv, Forbes, 12 Apr. 2021 See More

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


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


1809, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for provision

Noun and Verb

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Late Latin & Latin; Late Latin provision-, provisio act of providing, from Latin, foresight, from providēre to see ahead — more at provide

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Time Traveler for provision

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near provision



provision account

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Last Updated

25 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Provision.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for provision


pro·​vi·​sion | \ prə-ˈvi-zhən How to pronounce provision (audio) \

Kids Definition of provision

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a stock or store of supplies and especially of food usually used in pl. We have provisions to last us a week.
2 : the act of supplying the provision of food
3 : condition entry 1 sense 2 the provisions of a contract
4 : something done beforehand Make provision for emergencies.


provisioned; provisioning

Kids Definition of provision (Entry 2 of 2)

: to supply with things that are needed


pro·​vi·​sion | \ prə-ˈvi-zhən How to pronounce provision (audio) \

Legal Definition of provision

: a stipulation (as a clause in a statute or contract) made beforehand

More from Merriam-Webster on provision

Nglish: Translation of provision for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of provision for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about provision


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