sub·​sume | \ səb-ˈsüm How to pronounce subsume (audio) \
subsumed; subsuming

Definition of subsume

transitive verb

: to include or place within something larger or more comprehensive : encompass as a subordinate or component element red, green, and yellow are subsumed under the term "color"

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Other Words from subsume

subsumable \ səb-​ˈsü-​mə-​bəl How to pronounce subsumable (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for subsume


carry, comprehend, contain, embrace, encompass, entail, include, involve, number, take in


exclude, leave (out), miss out [British], omit

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Examples of subsume in a Sentence

games and team sports are subsumed under the classification of “recreation”

Recent Examples on the Web

More Executives in Hollywood say their issue, although a small slice of the much broader dispute, has been subsumed by the larger tensions. Julie Wernau, WSJ, "Smaller Movies Finding Big Problems in China," 3 Dec. 2018 Whatever role clubs once had in their immediate environments, at the highest level at least, is in danger of being subsumed by their position as global brands. Jonathan Wilson,, "England Enjoys Run of Success for Clubs, Country–Amid Backdrop of Unsettling Actions," 7 June 2019 The skepticism from a majority members of the Senate Armed Services Committee renewed doubts that Congress would approve President Trump’s proposed Space Force, which would be subsumed within the Air Force the way the Marine Corps... Nancy A. Youssef, WSJ, "Space Force Brought Down to Earth in Senate Hearing," 11 Apr. 2019 Bestiaries, popular mostly in Northern Europe, started fading out after about 1300, subsumed into broader natural history texts and encyclopedias. Judith H. Dobrzynski, WSJ, "‘Book of Beasts: The Bestiary in the Medieval World’ Review: Wondrous Records of Animal Lore," 15 June 2019 Other groups, notably America’s Indians and blacks, might follow Michael’s lead in asking similar questions about how their communities and traditions were subsumed into the majority’s cultural norms. Kyle Smith, National Review, "The Millennial Who Rejects Hipness and Irony," 14 June 2019 Her tenure serves as a reminder of what happens when partisanship, aided by the power of the presidency, is allowed to subsume everything else: traditions, norms, truth, people’s lives. Megan Garber, The Atlantic, "Sarah Sanders Broke the News," 13 June 2019 Her storyline is subsumed by his emotional struggle. Time, "Review: Late Night Is a Pitch-Perfect Workplace Comedy," 7 June 2019 In the most likely scenario discussed in the report, Russia will become a Chinese satellite, boosting its military power and gradually allowing its domestic market to be subsumed. Leonid Bershidsky, Twin Cities, "Leonid Bershidsky: Russia after Vladimir Putin," 5 June 2019

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

1818, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for subsume

New Latin subsumere, from Latin sub- + sumere to take up — more at consume

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Statistics for subsume

Last Updated

18 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for subsume

The first known use of subsume was in 1818

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More from Merriam-Webster on subsume

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with subsume

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for subsume

Britannica English: Translation of subsume for Arabic Speakers

Comments on subsume

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something desired as essential

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