resolve

verb
re·​solve | \ ri-ˈzälv, -ˈzȯlv also -ˈzäv or -ˈzȯv\
resolved; resolving

Definition of resolve 

(Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 obsolete : dissolve, melt
2a : break up, separate the prism resolved the light into a play of color also : to change by disintegration
b : to reduce by analysis resolve the problem into simple elements
c : to distinguish between or make independently visible adjacent parts of
d : to separate (a racemic compound or mixture) into the two components
3 : to cause resolution of (a pathological state)
4a : to deal with successfully : clear up resolve doubts resolve a dispute
b : to find an answer to
c : to make clear or understandable
d : to find a mathematical solution of
e : to split up into two or more components especially in assigned directions resolve a vector
5 : to reach a firm decision about resolve to get more sleep resolve disputed points in a text
6a : to declare or decide by a formal resolution and vote
b : to change by resolution or formal vote the house resolved itself into a committee
7 : to make (something, such as one or more voice parts or the total musical harmony) progress from dissonance to consonance
8 : to work out the resolution of (something, such as a play)

intransitive verb

1 : to become separated into component parts also : to become reduced by dissolving or analysis
2 : to form a resolution : determine
4 : to progress from dissonance to consonance

resolve

noun

Definition of resolve (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : fixity of purpose : resoluteness
2 : something that is resolved
3 : a legal or official determination especially : a formal resolution

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Other Words from resolve

Verb

resolvable \ ri-​ˈzäl-​və-​bəl , -​ˈzȯl-​ also  -​ˈzä-​və-​ or  -​ˈzȯ-​və-​ \ adjective
resolver noun

Choose the Right Synonym for resolve

Verb

decide, determine, settle, rule, resolve mean to come or cause to come to a conclusion. decide implies previous consideration of a matter causing doubt, wavering, debate, or controversy. she decided to sell her house determine implies fixing the identity, character, scope, or direction of something. determined the cause of the problem settle implies a decision reached by someone with power to end all dispute or uncertainty. the dean's decision settled the campus alcohol policy rule implies a determination by judicial or administrative authority. the judge ruled that the evidence was inadmissible resolve implies an expressed or clear decision or determination to do or refrain from doing something. he resolved to quit smoking

Examples of resolve in a Sentence

Verb

The brothers finally resolved their conflict. The issue of the book's authorship was never resolved. His speech did nothing to resolve doubts about the company's future. They haven't been able to resolve their differences. She resolved to quit smoking. He resolved that he would start dating again. The committee resolved to override the veto.

Noun

His comments were intended to weaken her resolve but they only served to strengthen it. a naval pilot who has been unwavering in his resolve to become an astronaut
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The fourth quarter also marked continued work by Tesla to resolve logistics issues that plagued efforts to put new Model 3s in the hands of the customers after the factory improved production. Tim Higgins, WSJ, "Tesla Shares Sink on Model 3 Delivery Miss, Price Cut," 2 Jan. 2019 To that end, being able to call someone immediately to resolve issues is imperative. Vernal Coleman, The Seattle Times, "Seattle, King County look to Atlanta program to entice landlords to rent to homeless, but can it work here?," 26 Dec. 2018 The two sides will intensify negotiations to resolve the key issues, including non-tariff barriers, intellectual property protection, cybertheft, and more, according to a statement from the White House. Jen Kirby, Vox, "The US and China reach a compromise — but the trade standoff is far from over," 2 Dec. 2018 Verizon had already announced its delay yesterday; the company is focusing on resolving issues where Verizon lines used as a secondary number in an iPhone dual-SIM setup would be stuck on 2G CDMA speeds before offering eSIM support. Chaim Gartenberg, The Verge, "iPhone dual-SIM support won’t do much in the US this year," 31 Oct. 2018 Fixing the tears and other problems prompted NASA to announced in March that launch would slip from late this year to around May 2019 to give engineers more time to resolve outstanding issues. William Harwood, CBS News, "Launch of NASA's James Webb Space Telescope delayed again as costs rise," 27 June 2018 But before Pompeo eventually does move behind the camera, there are certain issues at Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital that still need to be resolved. Dan Barna, Glamour, "What Ellen Pompeo Just Said About the Future of Grey's Anatomy Might Worry You," 21 Sep. 2018 With Robert Mueller’s special-counsel investigation into ties between the Trump campaign and Russia inching towards a conclusion, the Supreme Court could be called upon to resolve several critical questions in the coming months. The Economist, "Brett Kavanaugh could shape the law for the next 40 years," 12 July 2018 To resolve long-standing concerns about municipal ownership of the entire course, the town took the 1.3-acre parcel from the Carlsons in 2011, using its power of eminent domain. Jesse Leavenworth, Courant Community, "Housing Development Proposed In Manchester Near Glastonbury Line," 12 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Home fans showered the junior signal-caller and chanted for his backup, Gary Rogers, but Brink showed the ultimate resolve in the second half, finding success with his arm and his hands. Theo Lawson, The Seattle Times, "Five memorable Washington State football games against Big 12 Conference teams," 25 Dec. 2018 But as 19 men showed the world their worst, we Americans displayed what makes our country great: courage and heroism, compassion and generosity, unity and resolve. John Mccain, Popular Mechanics, "John McCain: The 9/11 Conspiracy Myths and the Truth Under Attack," 11 Sep. 2018 She was flooded by fear and sadness, quickly followed by a sense of resolve. Kate Rockwood, Good Housekeeping, "After a Metastatic Breast Cancer Diagnosis, One Mom Is Encouraging Others to Ask the Right Questions," 15 Aug. 2018 Argentina’s central bank had eased its inflation targets and cut rates; skittish investors saw a lack of resolve. The Economist, "How to play Argentina," 14 June 2018 But the Pilots are blessed with resolve and on Thursday, a bit of luck. Don Norcross, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Pilots serve up early doughnuts, then a win in lacrosse semifinals," 10 May 2018 Wells Fargo disclosed last week that the CFPB and the OCC had offered to the resolve civil investigations for $1 billion. Emily Glazer, WSJ, "Wells Fargo Close to $1 Billion Settlement on Risk Management," 19 Apr. 2018 Memories of the war have bolstered voters’ resolve to make change by more peaceful means, but so has the growth of an increasingly robust civil society, and increasing inclusiveness in politics, from new parties to newfound interest among youth. James Courtright, The Christian Science Monitor, "Sierra Leone's elections may look like a party – but pride in the polls is serious," 6 Mar. 2018 But a humbler, more open approach could attract some of his peripheral supporters and weaken the resolve of his base. Bobby Jindal, WSJ, "Democrats, Try Some Self-Restraint," 8 Oct. 2018

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

Verb

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

Noun

1591, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for resolve

Verb

Middle English, from Latin resolvere to unloose, dissolve, from re- + solvere to loosen, release — more at solve

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Statistics for resolve

Last Updated

10 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for resolve

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

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More Definitions for resolve

resolve

verb

English Language Learners Definition of resolve

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to find an answer or solution to (something) : to settle or solve (something)

: to make a definite and serious decision to do something

: to make a formal decision about something usually by a vote

resolve

noun

English Language Learners Definition of resolve (Entry 2 of 2)

: a strong determination to do something

resolve

verb
re·​solve | \ ri-ˈzälv \
resolved; resolving

Kids Definition of resolve

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to find an answer to : solve They resolved the difficulty.
2 : to reach a firm decision about something I resolve to work hard.
3 : to decide by a formal resolution and vote

resolve

noun

Kids Definition of resolve (Entry 2 of 2)

: firmness of purpose : determination

resolve

verb
re·​solve | \ ri-ˈzälv, -ˈzȯlv also -ˈzäv or -ˈzȯv\
resolved; resolving

Medical Definition of resolve 

transitive verb

1 : to separate (a racemic compound or mixture) into the two components
2 : to cause resolution of (as inflammation)
3 : to distinguish between or make independently visible adjacent parts of

intransitive verb

1 : to become separated into component parts also : to become reduced by dissolving or analysis
2 : to undergo resolution used especially of disease or inflammation

Other Words from resolve

resolvable \ -​ˈzäl-​və-​bəl, -​ˈzȯl-​ also -​ˈzäv-​ə-​ or -​ˈzȯv-​ə-​ \ adjective

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resolve

verb
re·​solve | \ ri-ˈzälv \
resolved; resolving

Legal Definition of resolve 

(Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to deal with successfully : clear up resolve a dispute
2a : to declare or decide by formal resolution and vote
b : to change by resolution or formal vote the house resolved itself into a committee

intransitive verb

: to form a resolution

resolve

noun

Legal Definition of resolve (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : something that is resolved
2 : a legal or official determination especially : a legislative declaration

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More from Merriam-Webster on resolve

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for resolve

Spanish Central: Translation of resolve

Nglish: Translation of resolve for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of resolve for Arabic Speakers

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