re·​source | \ ˈrē-ˌsȯrs How to pronounce resource (audio) , -ˌzȯrs, ri-ˈsȯrs, -ˈzȯrs \

Definition of resource

1a : a source of supply or support : an available means usually used in plural
b : a natural source of wealth or revenue often used in plural
c : a natural feature or phenomenon that enhances the quality of human life
d : computable wealth usually used in plural
e : a source of information or expertise
2 : something to which one has recourse in difficulty : expedient
3 : a possibility of relief or recovery
4 : a means of spending one's leisure time
5 : an ability to meet and handle a situation : resourcefulness

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms for resource


Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Choose the Right Synonym for resource

resource, resort, expedient, shift, makeshift, stopgap mean something one turns to in the absence of the usual means or source of supply. resource and resort apply to anything one falls back upon. exhausted all of their resources a last resort expedient may apply to any device or contrivance used when the usual one is not at hand or not possible. a flimsy expedient shift implies a tentative or temporary imperfect expedient. desperate shifts to stave off foreclosure makeshift implies an inferior expedient adopted because of urgent need or allowed through indifference. old equipment employed as a makeshift stopgap applies to something used temporarily as an emergency measure. a new law intended only as a stopgap

Examples of resource in a Sentence

Oil is essentially their only resource. The computer laboratory is an essential resource for students.
Recent Examples on the Web The district will not renew its agreement with the city of Phoenix for on-campus police officers, known as school resource officers, according to a district press release. Lily Altavena, The Arizona Republic, "Phoenix Union will no longer have Phoenix Police officers on high school campuses," 8 July 2020 The change stops short of calls by some activists to remove armed school resource officers employed by the police department from schools or to significantly reduce the security footprint in schools. Washington Post, "D.C. Council raises gas and other taxes, rejects tax increase on wealthy, during first budget vote," 8 July 2020 Wastewater treatment plants, landfills and dairy farms have captured and used biogenic methane as an energy resource for decades, in a form usually called biogas. Emily Grubert, The Conversation, "‘Renewable’ natural gas may sound green, but it’s not an antidote for climate change," 6 July 2020 The co-authors are hopeful that nonprofits and school districts with dual-language programs will buy and distribute Behind My Mask as a resource for local communities. Dallas News, "To show love amid COVID-19 fears, North Texas couple creates a bilingual book to help kids cope," 1 July 2020 Like Kapono, some surfers recognize surf parks as a valuable training resource in an arsenal of tools. Molly Glick, Popular Science, "Pro surfers hit artificial waves in the heat of the climate crisis," 30 June 2020 But where James wanted to tame his sense that life was ferocious and sinister, contingent and multiple, Oates taps her feeling of inner chaos as a creative resource. Leo Robson, The New Yorker, "The Unruly Genius of Joyce Carol Oates," 29 June 2020 Many of the unknowns most relevant for developing lunar ice as a resource, such as which deposits would be most accessible and economical to mine, are of minimal scientific interest. Leonard David, Scientific American, "NASA’s Hunt for Lunar Water Intensifies," 24 June 2020 The rules can be arbitrary, said Brian Newby, executive director of the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, a federal agency that serves as a national resource for information about election administration. John Wildermuth,, "California’s elections boss: State’s voting changes are model for the country," 19 June 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'resource.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of resource

circa 1611, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for resource

French ressource, from Old French ressourse relief, resource, from resourdre to relieve, literally, to rise again, from Latin resurgere — more at resurrection

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about resource

Time Traveler for resource

Time Traveler

The first known use of resource was circa 1611

See more words from the same year

Statistics for resource

Last Updated

28 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Resource.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 6 Aug. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for resource


How to pronounce resource (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of resource

: something that a country has and can use to increase its wealth
: a supply of something (such as money) that someone has and can use when it is needed
: a place or thing that provides something useful


re·​source | \ ˈrē-ˌsȯrs How to pronounce resource (audio) \

Kids Definition of resource

1 resources plural : a usable stock or supply (as of money or products)
3 : the ability to meet and deal with situations

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on resource

What made you want to look up resource? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


Test Your Vocabulary

July 2020 Words of the Day Quiz

  • papercraft sunset
  • Which is a synonym of mien?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!