re·​li·​ance | \ ri-ˈlī-ən(t)s How to pronounce reliance (audio) \

Definition of reliance

1 : the act of relying : the state of being reliant
2 : something or someone relied on

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Examples of reliance in a Sentence

he's been the family's foremost reliance in times of trouble many times a baby's reliance on her parents
Recent Examples on the Web Survival knives are the embodiment of self-preservation and self-reliance. Tim Macwelch, Outdoor Life, "10 of the Best Survival Knives," 27 Jan. 2020 South Africa played a leading role in these efforts to build capacity and advance African agency and self-reliance across the continent and globally, with the strong support of then President Thabo Mbeki (1999-2008). John J Stremlau, Quartz Africa, "The fall of the Berlin Wall 30 years ago still resonates across Africa," 8 Nov. 2019 In New Zealand small town roots are associated with resourcefulness and self reliance. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Kiwi coaches to the fore in Rugby World Cup quarterfinals," 15 Oct. 2019 Olivier knew, even in the midst of depression and the hard fight to stay sober, that the path to a healthy, stable home lay in the growth of her own self-reliance, not more co-dependence. Michael Dumas, al, "Event seeks to fund lasting change for families in need," 9 Oct. 2019 Simplicity and harmony Gregg learned Hindi during his time with Gandhi and came to understand the Gandhian values of simplicity, self-reliance and how to live in harmony with the world. John Charles Wooding, The Conversation, "Gandhi’s 150th birthday: A little-remembered philosopher translated the Mahatma’s ideas of nonviolence for Americans," 2 Oct. 2019 Sabau said the greater reliance on mobile devices and wireless technology is boosting the need for workers in that field. Aldo Svaldi, The Denver Post, "In Colorado, growth industries include manicurists and cell phone tower workers. Surprisingly, some once-important tech jobs are dwindling.," 25 Sep. 2019 This argument fails because BLM is not required to rely on the best available scientific information in preparing an environmental assessment and, in any event, the agency’s reliance on ecological site descriptions was reasonable. Jennifer Oldham, National Geographic, "Forests on Utah’s public lands may soon be torn out. Here’s why.," 3 Sep. 2019 Yet even with Kellen Moore as the play-caller last year, Elliott’s season seemed caught on Moore’s reliance on the passing attack. Calvin Watkins, Dallas News, "Cowboys RB Ezekiel Elliott not worried about being forgotten in Mike McCarthy’s offense, thinks ‘things are headed in the right direction’," 23 Jan. 2020

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

1606, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for reliance

Time Traveler

The first known use of reliance was in 1606

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Statistics for reliance

Last Updated

15 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Reliance.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for reliance


How to pronounce reliance (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of reliance

: the state of needing someone or something for help, support, etc.


re·​li·​ance | \ ri-ˈlī-əns How to pronounce reliance (audio) \

Kids Definition of reliance

: the act or state of depending on someone or something The nation's reliance on petroleum is growing.


re·​li·​ance | \ ri-ˈlī-əns How to pronounce reliance (audio) \

Legal Definition of reliance

1 : the act of relying reliance on a promise
2 : reliance interest at interest 1

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