reinforce

verb
re·​in·​force | \ ˌrē-ən-ˈfȯrs How to pronounce reinforce (audio) \
variants: or less commonly

Definition of reinforce

transitive verb

1 : to strengthen by additional assistance, material, or support : make stronger or more pronounced reinforce levees reinforce the elbows of a jacket reinforce ideas
2 : to strengthen or increase by fresh additions reinforce our troops were reinforcing their pitching staff
3 : to stimulate (a subject, such as an experimental animal) by reinforcement (see reinforcement sense 3) also : to encourage (a response) by reinforcement

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from reinforce

reinforceable \ ˌrē-​ən-​ˈfȯr-​sə-​bəl How to pronounce reinforceable (audio) \ adjective

Examples of reinforce in a Sentence

The captain sent out another squad to reinforce the troops. Our camp is reinforced with supplies flown in by helicopter. The levees will need to be reinforced. The bad weather forecast only reinforces our decision to leave early tomorrow. Some critics say that the movie reinforces negative stereotypes about the military. We do our best to reinforce good conduct in the classroom.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

The results reinforce that consumer demand for alternative meat products is on the rise. Fortune, "Beyond Meat Stock Soars as Tim Hortons Introduces Faux-Meat Breakfast Sandwiches," 12 June 2019 Corporations can’t be people and can’t espouse beliefs — until those corporations are run by people espousing beliefs that reinforce the spirit of the Left’s cause du jour. Alexandra Desanctis, National Review, "Corporations Are People, Unborn Children Aren’t," 11 June 2019 Three years ago, shortly before Trump was elected, British voters opted to leave the European Union, a powerful economic partnership that has reinforced the security blanket of NATO. Jonathan Allen, NBC News, "Trump the nationalist celebrates D-Day's triumph of internationalism," 5 June 2019 For some trans people, this message reinforces restrictive stereotypes that ultimately fuel the same violence and discrimination that FFS is advertised as protecting trans women from. Serena Daniari, Allure, "The Complicated Process of Undergoing Facial-Feminization Surgery, and Why I Did It," 23 Mar. 2019 The hatred of our opponents that accompanies a party system divided by worldview is self-reinforcing and, ultimately, dangerous. Ezra Klein, Vox, "A new theory for why Republicans and Democrats see the world differently," 18 Dec. 2018 Notice how much of this guilt is self-reinforced and internalized via social norms. Lauren Valenti, Vogue, "Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Self-Care Confessional on Instagram Is as Real as It Gets," 18 Dec. 2018 Tracy explains in her book that looking at these items may reinforce that your best days are behind you, which affects your mental health and stability. Elizabeth Gulino, House Beautiful, "This is What's Actually Keeping You From KonMari'ing Your House," 3 Apr. 2019 The manufacturing sector has sent mixed signals in recent weeks, but Federal Reserve data released Tuesday reinforces the view that manufacturing has hit a soft patch. Austen Hufford, WSJ, "U.S. Manufacturing Squeezed by Global Slowdown, Trade Pressures," 16 Apr. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'reinforce.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of reinforce

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for reinforce

re- + inforce, alteration of enforce

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about reinforce

Statistics for reinforce

Last Updated

16 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for reinforce

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for reinforce

reinforce

verb

English Language Learners Definition of reinforce

: to strengthen (a group of people) with new supplies or more people
: to strengthen (something, such as clothing or a building) by adding more material for support
: to encourage or give support to (an idea, behavior, feeling, etc.)

reinforce

verb
re·​in·​force | \ ˌrē-ən-ˈfȯrs\
reinforced; reinforcing

Kids Definition of reinforce

1 : to strengthen with new supplies or more people Another squad reinforced the troops.
2 : to strengthen by adding more material for support The wall needs to be reinforced.

reinforce

transitive verb
re·​in·​force | \ ˌrē-ən-ˈfō(ə)rs, -ˈfȯ(ə)rs How to pronounce reinforce (audio) \
reinforced; reinforcing

Medical Definition of reinforce

1 : to strengthen by additional material or support : make stronger reinforced with vitamins
2 : to stimulate (as an experimental animal or a student) by reinforcement also : to encourage (a response) by reinforcement

Other Words from reinforce

reinforceable \ -​ə-​bəl How to pronounce reinforceable (audio) \ adjective

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on reinforce

What made you want to look up reinforce? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

showing courage and determination

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words for Summer: A Quiz

  • a closeup of a sunflower
  • Which of the following words means “of or relating to summer”?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!