re·​quire | \ ri-ˈkwī(-ə)r How to pronounce require (audio) \
required; requiring

Definition of require

transitive verb

1a : to claim or ask for by right and authority
b archaic : request
2a : to call for as suitable or appropriate the occasion requires formal dress
b : to demand as necessary or essential : have a compelling need for all living beings require food
3 : to impose a compulsion or command on : compel
4 chiefly British : to feel or be obliged used with a following infinitiveone does not require to be a specialist— Elizabeth Bowen

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Synonyms & Antonyms for require



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demand, claim, require, exact mean to ask or call for something as due or as necessary. demand implies peremptoriness and insistence and often the right to make requests that are to be regarded as commands. demanded payment of the debt claim implies a demand for the delivery or concession of something due as one's own or one's right. claimed the right to manage his own affairs require suggests the imperativeness that arises from inner necessity, compulsion of law or regulation, or the exigencies of the situation. the patient requires constant attention exact implies not only demanding but getting what one demands. exacts absolute loyalty

Examples of require in a Sentence

the toy requires four batteries, which are not included
Recent Examples on the Web Self-Feeding: Fires require constant resource management and maintenance, but a Swedish fire log’s inside-out design makes it self-ventilating and self-sustaining. Popular Mechanics Editors, Popular Mechanics, "The Ultimate Campfire Just Needs One Piece of Wood," 12 Jan. 2020 Ask them, or require them, to quote ticket prices that include all of these essential items: a boarding pass printout, a seat reservation, a checked bag, basic amenities and the ability to change a ticket for a reasonable price. Christopher Elliott, USA TODAY, "Every airline ticket used to come with these 'perks' – so why don't they anymore?," 11 Jan. 2020 Finding a lathe operator—competent or otherwise— takes more than six months, and may require forking out cash to a recruitment agency. The Economist, "Old, rich and divided Demography could be yet another force for divergence within the EU," 11 Jan. 2020 The deal sets up a reinsurance fund, charges enrollees around $25 in premiums, and will allow people to get referrals to work — but won’t require them to work as a condition of staying enrolled in Medicaid. Kimberly Leonard, Washington Examiner, "Daily on Healthcare: Democrats want FDA to have more drug recall power," 10 Jan. 2020 Efforts to define university foundations as public entities usually go nowhere, but states can require more transparency of private organizations that are so clearly enmeshed with public institutions. Alexa Capeloto, The Conversation, "Why some public universities get to keep their donors secret," 10 Jan. 2020 Ghosn emerged in Lebanon last week after fleeing strict bail conditions in Tokyo that required him to stay in the country. Sherisse Pham, CNN, "Ex-Nissan CEO: Carlos Ghosn's escape from Japan is a betrayal," 9 Jan. 2020 Verma said virtually all of his hundreds of patients from Chico and Paradise had complications after the fire that required them to be hospitalized or treated. NBC News, "As Australia's wildfires rage, health concerns mount among experts and victims," 9 Jan. 2020 Bronstein and his collaborators knew that going beyond the Euclidean plane would require them to reimagine one of the basic computational procedures that made neural networks so effective at 2D image recognition in the first place. Quanta Magazine, "An Idea From Physics Helps AI See in Higher Dimensions," 9 Jan. 2020

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

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

History and Etymology for require

Middle English requeren, from Anglo-French requere, from Vulgar Latin *requaerere to seek for, need, require, alteration of Latin requirere, from re- + quaerere to seek, ask

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Time Traveler for require

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for require

Last Updated

17 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Require.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 21 January 2020.

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More Definitions for require


How to pronounce require (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of require

: to need (something)
: to make it necessary for someone to do something


re·​quire | \ ri-ˈkwīr How to pronounce require (audio) \
required; requiring

Kids Definition of require

1 : to have a need for This trick requires skill.
2 : order entry 1 sense 2, command The law requires drivers to wear seat belts.

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More from Merriam-Webster on require

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for require

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with require

Spanish Central: Translation of require

Nglish: Translation of require for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of require for Arabic Speakers

Comments on require

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good-natured easy friendliness

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