supply

noun
plural supplies

Definition of supply

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : the quantity or amount (as of a commodity) needed or available beer was in short supply in that hot weather— Nevil Shute
b : provisions, stores usually used in plural
c : a member of the clergy filling a vacant pulpit temporarily
d obsolete : reinforcements often used in plural
2 : the act or process of filling a want or need engaged in the supply of raw materials to industry
3 : the quantities of goods or services offered for sale at a particular time or at one price
4 : something that maintains or constitutes a supply
5 obsolete : assistance, succor

supply

verb
sup·​ply | \ sə-ˈplī How to pronounce supply (audio) \
supplied; supplying

Definition of supply (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1 [Middle French souploier, alteration of soupplier]
a : to make available for use : provide supplied the necessary funds
b : to satisfy the needs or wishes of
c : to provide for : satisfy laws by which the material wants of men are suppliedBulletin of Bates College
d : to furnish (organs, tissues, or cells) with a vital element (such as blood or nerve fibers)
2 : to substitute for another in specifically : to serve as a supply in (a church or pulpit)
3 : to add as a supplement

intransitive verb

: to serve as a supply or substitute

supply

Definition of supply (Entry 3 of 3)

less common spelling of

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Other Words from supply

Verb

supplier \ sə-​ˈplī(-​ə)r How to pronounce supplier (audio) \ noun

Synonyms for supply

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Verb

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Examples of supply in a Sentence

Noun adequate supplies of fresh water He bought a month's supply of cigarettes. They took a month's worth of supplies on the camping trip. The town is in need of basic medical supplies. a store that sells art supplies The state is trying to disrupt the supply of illegal drugs. The storm interrupted the town's electricity supply. Verb The company supplied the necessary money. You'll have to supply your own food.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Elsewhere, B&M European Value Retail SA’s outlets have been extended into garden centers, making them a one stop shop for food, home furnishings, pet supplies, DIY and gardening. Washington Post, "Department Stores Are Dead? Nobody Told Primark," 18 Sep. 2019 Cupboards in that station are filled with medicine, medical supplies, and nutritional supplements and formulas that count for the boy’s diet. Denise Coffey, courant.com, "Challenges Remain For Jewett City 4-Year-Old," 16 Sep. 2019 Global oil prices surged the most on record after a strike on a Saudi Arabian oil facility removed about 5% of global supplies, an attack the U.S. has blamed on Iran. Los Angeles Times, "Oil jumps the most ever after attack cuts Saudi Arabian supplies," 15 Sep. 2019 Whether the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, the world's largest supply of emergency crude, gets used may depend on how quickly the Saudis can resume production from the world's biggest crude-processing facility. Anchorage Daily News, "Saudi supply disruption puts huge U.S. petroleum stash in play," 15 Sep. 2019 For many years, humanitarian aid workers have provided vital supplies, especially water, for people making the arduous trip. Elizabeth King, Allure, "These Immigration Activists Prove On-the-Ground Support Is Crucial Amid Ongoing ICE Raids," 12 Sep. 2019 The shelter is caring for the surviving animals, but the flood destroyed all of the shelter's medical supplies, food and vehicles. Gustavo Valdes And Pamela Boykoff, CNN, "220 dogs, 50 cats died in flooding at Bahamas animal shelter," 8 Sep. 2019 September: Time for school supplies, Pumpkin Spice lattes and, yes, new Apple gear. Courtney Linder, Popular Mechanics, "Everything We Know Apple's Upcoming iPhone Event," 6 Sep. 2019 Items to be collected: Toiletries, diapers, baby wipes, first aid kits, cleaning supplies, canned goods, box fans, leather work gloves, hand sanitizer, non-perishable food, water, generators (no clothes) and monetary donations. Michael Shapiro, SI.com, "Suns Center Deandre Ayton Donates $100k to Bahamas for Hurricane Dorian Relief Efforts," 6 Sep. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb In China and Mongolia, kangs – heated stone platforms – were used in inns as early as 5000 B.C. Guests supplied the bedding and slept with fellow tourists. Brian Fagan, The Conversation, "The bizarre social history of beds," 13 Sep. 2019 The drug distributor that supplied her kept shipping pills, despite her ever-increasing orders. John Caniglia, cleveland.com, "‘Unfathomable’: How 1.6 million pills from a small-town doctor helped fuel the opioid crisis in Ohio," 1 Sep. 2019 The biggest hurdle Murray will have to overcome is the inept Cardinals front office, which hasn’t supplied him with the best supporting cast. Jeremy Cluff, azcentral, "Ranking NFL starting quarterbacks for 2019: Where does Kyler Murray belong among QBs?," 29 Aug. 2019 Days later, federal authorities discovered a laboratory used to make speed and found that Brazil supplied it with chemicals. AZCentral.com, "Don Bolles files: The case of Skippy Brazil, the drug informant who was set on fire," 28 Aug. 2019 But spy agencies benefit from having sincere optimists in charge, since the paranoia will always supply itself. Adam Gopnik, The New Yorker, "Are Spies More Trouble Than They’re Worth?," 26 Aug. 2019 The English colonies were expanding and the captives supplied them with an instant and distinguishable work force. National Geographic, "400 years ago, enslaved Africans first arrived in Virginia," 13 Aug. 2019 Many states have used the drug—a barbiturate—in their executions, but there have been problems with supplying it, as pharmaceutical companies refuse to provide it for lethal injections on ethical grounds. Hanna Kozlowska, Quartz, "The federal government schedules 5 executions after bringing back the death penalty," 25 July 2019 Telecommunication companies have warned that costs will rise if Huawei is barred from supplying 5G equipment. Washington Post, "Why 5G Phones and Huawei Have U.S. and Europe at Odds," 18 Sep. 2019

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

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 5

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 3

History and Etymology for supply

Verb

Middle English supplien to complete, compensate for, from Middle French soupplier, from Latin supplēre to fill up, complete, raise (a military unit, crew) to its full complement, substitute, from sub- up + plēre to fill — more at sub-, full

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Statistics for supply

Last Updated

4 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for supply

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

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More Definitions for supply

supply

noun

English Language Learners Definition of supply

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the amount of something that is available to be used
: things (such as food, equipment, fuel, etc.) that are needed for a particular purpose and that will be used by a particular person or group
: the process or system by which something is provided to a person, place, etc.

supply

verb
How to pronounce supply (audio)

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

: to make (something) available to be used : to provide someone or something with (something that is needed or wanted)

supply

verb
sup·​ply | \ sə-ˈplī How to pronounce supply (audio) \
supplied; supplying

Kids Definition of supply

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to provide for : satisfy There is enough to supply the demand.
2 : to make available : furnish The tree supplies shade.

supply

noun
plural supplies

Kids Definition of supply (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the amount of something that is needed or can be gotten medical supplies
2 : store entry 2 sense 3 I keep a supply of pencils in my desk.
3 : the act or process of providing something The company is engaged in the supply of raw materials.
sup·​ply | \ sə-ˈplī How to pronounce supply (audio) \
supplied; supplying

Medical Definition of supply

: to furnish (organs, tissues, or cells) with a vital element (as blood or nerve fibers) used of nerves and blood vessels the mandibular foramen transmits blood vessels and nerves supplying the lower teeth

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Comments on supply

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