resolve

verb
re·​solve | \ ri-ˈzälv How to pronounce resolve (audio) , -ˈzȯlv also -ˈzäv or -ˈzȯv\
resolved; resolving

Definition of resolve

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : 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
2 : to reach a firm decision about resolve to get more sleep resolve disputed points in a text
3a : 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
4a : 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
5 : to make (something, such as one or more voice parts or the total musical harmony) progress from dissonance to consonance
6 : to work out the resolution of (something, such as a play)
7 : to cause resolution of (a pathological state)
8 obsolete : dissolve, melt

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 How to pronounce resolvable (audio) , -​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 In the meeting, Haley wrote, Trump seemed to be swinging away from her view, but told the three of them to go resolve their differences elsewhere. BostonGlobe.com, "‘‘It was their decisions, not the president’s, that were in the best interests of America, they said. The president didn’t know what he was doing,’’ Haley wrote of the views the two men held.," 11 Nov. 2019 This gives us the best chance of successfully communicating with them and resolving differences. Jayne O'donnell, USA TODAY, "Empathy is good, but what if you care too much? Dr. Judith Orloff has advice for empaths," 9 Nov. 2019 Many of the factual disputes among the parties are questions for a jury to resolve rather than for a single judge to decide today. oregonlive, "Judge rules Cider Riot owner’s $1 million lawsuit against Joey Gibson can move forward," 8 Nov. 2019 The guild has insisted that the solidarity and resolve its members have shown in the agency fight sends a signal to the studios, too, that writers are newly energized and not to be trifled with. Jonathan Handel, The Hollywood Reporter, "Writers Guild Reveals Studio Negotiating Committee Amid Agency Fight," 8 Nov. 2019 The settlement addressed the claims in Florida and resolved open civil investigations into Walgreens by U.S. attorneys in Colorado, Michigan and New York, as well as other DEA field offices nationwide. Anchorage Daily News, "At height of opioid crisis, Walgreens handled nearly one in five of the most addictive drugs," 7 Nov. 2019 Nor have crucial geopolitical battles around 5G been resolved yet—such as how big a role China’s Huawei, the world’s largest telecom equipment maker, will play in advancing the technology globally. Jane Li, Quartz, "Forget about 5G, China has kicked off its development of 6G," 7 Nov. 2019 The settlement addressed the claims in Florida and resolved open civil investigations into Walgreens by U.S. attorneys in Colorado, Michigan and New York, as well as other DEA field offices nationwide. Jenn Abelson, chicagotribune.com, "At height of opioid crisis, Walgreens handled nearly 1 in 5 of the most addictive opioids," 7 Nov. 2019 Absent were innovations aimed at bigger classes of hazards beyond the scope of even large, multi-hospital systems such as resolving problems like look-alike, sound-alike drugs, or of confusing and error-inducing interfaces in technology. Kathleen Sutcliffe, Time, "The Health Care Industry Needs to be More Honest About Medical Errors," 5 Nov. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Already, the caretaker justice minister has cited protests as one reason for the ministry’s recent resolve to move forward on years-old corruption cases. Adam Rasmi, Quartz, "A simple strategy shift breathes new life into Lebanon’s protest movement," 7 Nov. 2019 Her tenacity and steadfast resolve in fighting for equity for all students will be her legacy always. al, "Alabama state school board member Ella Bell has died," 3 Nov. 2019 When her back was to the wall, Gert was at her least complicated, trusting in her chutzpah and stubborn resolve. oregonlive, "Gert Boyle, ‘One Tough Mother’ who led Columbia Sportswear, dies at 95," 3 Nov. 2019 The resolve in Nagy’s tone was undeniable, his competitive spirit impressive. Dan Wiederer, chicagotribune.com, "Matt Nagy’s last-place Bears aren’t meeting expectations — and the fan base is enraged. How will he respond?," 31 Oct. 2019 The effortless, dominant, joyous Warriors are gone, replaced by an overwhelmed alter-ego whose short-term plight will test the patience and resolve of everyone involved. Ben Golliver, The Denver Post, "Analysis: Steph Curry breaks hand, sending Warriors spiraling into an identity crisis," 31 Oct. 2019 Can Verlander now find the same resolve to earn his first World Series win? Benjamin Hoffman, New York Times, "Nationals Overcome Astros in Game 6 to Extend World Series," 29 Oct. 2019 The Wolverines' resolve was tested in the third quarter after Notre Dame scored on a throw-back to tight end Cole Kmet, but Patterson and the offense engineered a six-play, 75-yard touchdown drive that put Michigan firmly in control. Orion Sang, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan football destroys Notre Dame, 45-14, in best performance of season," 27 Oct. 2019 But even as the emotion is raw, the resolve to move forward is strong. NBC News, "Tree of Life shooting: One year later, Squirrel Hill residents committed to moving forward," 24 Oct. 2019

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 8

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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Time Traveler for resolve

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for resolve

Last Updated

14 Nov 2019

Cite this Entry

“Resolve.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/resolves. Accessed 21 November 2019.

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More Definitions for resolve

resolve

verb
How to pronounce resolve (audio)

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 How to pronounce resolve (audio) \
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 How to pronounce resolve (audio) \
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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