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

Equities have been rebounding from last month’s drop as economic data improved, political risks from Brexit to Hong Kong eased and face-to-face talks were set to resume in an effort to resolve the trade dispute with China. Washington Post, "Stocks climb to a cusp of a record," 13 Sep. 2019 The Bush administration tried to deny California’s effort to set its own emissions standards in 2007, but Obama had taken office before the case was resolved. Wired, "The Fight Over Fuel-Economy Rules Is Getting Messy," 13 Sep. 2019 The 10 largest corporate settlements reached with five federal agencies from 2012 to 2014 required the companies to pay nearly $80 billion to resolve allegations of wrongdoing, according to a 2015 Public Interest Research Group Education Fund study. USA Today, "How companies turn government settlements into tax write-offs," 12 Sep. 2019 In contrast, a Chapter 11 reorganization allows a debtor to sell some or all of its assets or propose a reorganization plan that aims to resolve and satisfy enough creditors to re-emerge as a going concern. Lindsey Simon, The Conversation, "How corporate bankruptcy works," 12 Sep. 2019 The idea is that all parties can be extremely candid in an effort to resolve the case. Courtney Shea, refinery29.com, "No, Jacob Hoggard’s Trial Will Not Begin September 27," 23 Aug. 2019 After Brown died, questions arose about multiple bigamy, DNA tests and a quarreling family attempting to resolve entitlement to an estate valued as high as $100 million. Eriq Gardner, The Hollywood Reporter, "Deaths in Entertainment Become Problems for the Federal Judiciary," 22 Aug. 2019 Humphrey, an emeritus professor at the London School of Economics, knew that a handful of evolutionary thinkers had offered ways to resolve this paradox. Elizabeth Culotta, Science | AAAS, "Have humans developed natural defenses against suicide?," 22 Aug. 2019 But long before that fix took shape, the Education Department had a policy to resolve payment disputes in the forgiveness program. Danielle Douglas-gabriel, Houston Chronicle, "The dizzying journey for public servants with student debt," 17 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

That’s another reason why Murray will need to hang tight with his steely resolve. Jarrett Bell, USA TODAY, "Opinion: Arizona Cardinals rookie QB Kyler Murray an NFL X-factor with lofty expectations," 1 Sep. 2019 But a more accurate reading of China’s policy stance is one of surprising calm in the face of the economic slowdown and, by extension, of stiffer resolve in the trade dispute. The Economist, "China is calm as growth slows. But is it complacent?," 29 Aug. 2019 Their athletic pedigree has surely aided Gauff, along with their daughter's resolve. Ravi Ubha And Ben Church, CNN, "15-year-old Cori 'Coco' Gauff extends remarkable run at Wimbledon," 3 July 2019 Even though people will start a medication with the resolve to take it, a subtle sense of shame will take over, keeping them from remaining adherent. Ashley Mateo, Glamour, "Women Are Ditching Their Antidepressants at Higher Rates Than Men—The Reasons Are Complicated," 20 June 2019 Also frightening is that the country seems to have now lost its way, as well as its resolve, in removing the abomination that threatens its democracy. Audrey Edwards, Washington Post, "The case for fleeing Trump’s America," 6 Sep. 2019 Crow adds with a decisive resolve, just before gathering her kids for a lunch with their grandma and pops. Jenn Pelly, Los Angeles Times, "At home with Sheryl Crow, a widely beloved, and wildly underappreciated, rock star," 21 Aug. 2019 More: Donald Trump slams white nationalism, vows to respond with 'urgent resolve' to El Paso, Dayton shootings Trump has condemned the shootings and the hateful ideologies that some believe motivated the El Paso shooting. Rebecca Morin, USA TODAY, "Obama: US should reject language from leaders that 'feeds a climate of fear and hatred'," 5 Aug. 2019 That resolve — and the inaugural whaling wall — inspired a 27-year project that took Wyland and his collection of sea creatures to walls around the United States and several other countries, including New Zealand, Russia and China. Daily Pilot, "Wyland returns his ‘whaling wall’ to its original spot in Laguna Beach," 20 July 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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Statistics for resolve

Last Updated

3 Oct 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 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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