sup·​port | \ sə-ˈpȯrt How to pronounce support (audio) \
supported; supporting; supports

Definition of support

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to endure bravely or quietly : bear
2a(1) : to promote the interests or cause of
(2) : to uphold or defend as valid or right : advocate supports fair play
(3) : to argue or vote for supported the motion to lower taxes
b(1) : assist, help bombers supported the ground troops
(2) : to act with (a star actor)
(3) : to bid in bridge so as to show support for
c : to provide with substantiation : corroborate support an alibi
3a : to pay the costs of : maintain support a family
b : to provide a basis for the existence or subsistence of the island could probably support three— A. B. C. Whipple support a habit
4a : to hold up or serve as a foundation or prop for
b : to maintain (a price) at a desired level by purchases or loans also : to maintain the price of by purchases or loans
5 : to keep from fainting, yielding, or losing courage : comfort
6 : to keep (something) going



Definition of support (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : the act or process of supporting : the condition of being supported
b : assistance provided by a company to users of its products customer support
2 : one that supports often used attributively a support staff
3 : sufficient strength in a suit bid by one's partner in bridge to justify raising the suit

Other Words from support


supportability \ sə-​ˌpȯr-​tə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce support (audio) \ noun
supportable \ sə-​ˈpȯr-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce support (audio) \ adjective
supportive \ sə-​ˈpȯr-​tiv How to pronounce support (audio) \ adjective
supportiveness \ sə-​ˈpȯr-​tiv-​nəs How to pronounce support (audio) \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for support


support, uphold, advocate, back, champion mean to favor actively one that meets opposition. support is least explicit about the nature of the assistance given. supports waterfront development uphold implies extended support given to something attacked. upheld the legitimacy of the military action advocate stresses urging or pleading. advocated prison reform back suggests supporting by lending assistance to one failing or falling. refusing to back the call for sanctions champion suggests publicly defending one unjustly attacked or too weak to advocate his or her own cause. championed the rights of children

Examples of support in a Sentence

Verb I completely support your decision to stay. She no longer supports the war. The senator says that he supports the proposed legislation. Which presidential candidate do you support? The study is supported by the American Medical Association. The country's citizens were asked to support the war effort. Her friends supported her by signing her petition. The charity supports needy families. Bombers were called in to support the ground troops. The planet's atmosphere cannot support human life. Noun The team gets a lot of support from its fans. I'd like to thank my parents for all of their love and support over the years. He depended on his wife for emotional support. He applied for financial support from the state. the company's friendly support staff Inspectors found that some of the bridge's supports were weak. She used my arm as a support and limped to the chair. These sneakers are designed to give your feet extra support. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Hong Kong last acted to support the currency in March 2019, as a glut of cash weighed on the city’s short-term interest rates. Dave Sebastian, WSJ, 12 May 2022 Terraform Labs chief executive Do Kwon also created a second mechanism to support the value of Terra at $1. Globe Staff,, 12 May 2022 Jim Monroe, Smithfield’s vice president of corporate affairs, said that the company has invested more than $900 million to support worker safety, including paying workers to stay home, and have exceeded CDC and OSHA guidelines. Taylor Telford, Washington Post, 12 May 2022 The protestors were there to support the display of rainbow pride flags inside public school buildings. Cameron Goodnight, Baltimore Sun, 12 May 2022 Several prominent Republican governors are going all in to support Gov. Brian Kemp, as Georgia's May 24 primary nears. Rick Klein, ABC News, 12 May 2022 Jeanette Taylor, 20th, whose ward covers Back of the Yards, said her primary goal in the aftermath of crime and violence is to listen to and support the people who need help. Stephanie Casanova, Chicago Tribune, 12 May 2022 And questions remain whether the supply chain — from mining to refining to production — can support the heavy demand for batteries as automakers ramp up their EV plans. Greg Bluestein, ajc, 12 May 2022 Moukawsher asked her to produce the list that would support her claim. Taylor Hartz, Hartford Courant, 12 May 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The bill — which would send $39.8 billion in economic, humanitarian and defense aid to Ukraine — passed in the House of Representatives this week with broad support. Eugene Scott, Washington Post, 13 May 2022 TikToks are often flooded with support from other Boricuas who share her cultural pride and encourage her to embrace her background. Angela Yang, NBC News, 12 May 2022 In the report released Wednesday, the U.S. Department of Interior identified 408 boarding schools that operated from 1819 to 1969 with federal support, across 37 states. Courtney Tanner, The Salt Lake Tribune, 12 May 2022 Many arts organizations stayed afloat during the worst of the pandemic shutdowns through government pandemic grants and loans, augmented with generous donor support. Los Angeles Times, 11 May 2022 As poet laureate, Mojgani received a $50,000 fellowship, funded by the Academy of American Poets with support from the Mellon Foundation, to lead public poetry programs. oregonlive, 11 May 2022 And Apple Music delivers industry-leading sound quality with support for spatial audio — there’s no better way to enjoy, discover, and experience music. Jacob Siegal, BGR, 10 May 2022 The auction, Irsay noted, comes with full support from the Cobain estate. Kat Bouza, Rolling Stone, 10 May 2022 The legislation passed with Democrats' support in the House but was blocked in the Senate, with opposition from every Senate Republican and Senator Joe Manchin. Sarah Ewall-wice, CBS News, 10 May 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of support


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for support


Middle English, from Anglo-French supporter, from Late Latin supportare, from Latin, to transport, from sub- + portare to carry — more at fare

Learn More About support

Time Traveler for support

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near support

supply teacher



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Statistics for support

Last Updated

14 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Support.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for support


sup·​port | \ sə-ˈpȯrt How to pronounce support (audio) \
supported; supporting

Kids Definition of support

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to hold up or in position : serve as a foundation or prop for Posts support the porch roof.
2 : to take sides with : favor Which candidate do you support?
3 : to provide evidence for : verify They cannot support this claim.
4 : to pay the costs of : maintain His income supports a large family.
5 : to keep going : sustain There is not enough air to support life.
6 : to provide help or encouragement to My friends supported me while I was sick.

Other Words from support

supporter noun



Kids Definition of support (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act of supporting : the condition of being supported
2 : someone or something that supports


transitive verb
sup·​port | \ sə-ˈpō(ə)rt, -ˈpȯ(ə)rt How to pronounce support (audio) \

Medical Definition of support

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to hold up or serve as a foundation or prop for
2 : to maintain in condition, action, or existence support respiration support life



Medical Definition of support (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act or process of supporting : the condition of being supported respiratory support
2 : supporter


transitive verb

Legal Definition of support

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : to promote the interests or cause of
b : to uphold or defend as valid or right
c : to argue or vote for
2 : to provide with substantiation or corroboration support an alibi
3 : to provide with the means of livelihood (as housing, food, or clothing) especially in accordance with an agreement or court order
4 : to hold up or in position : maintain the physical integrity of the right to have one's land supported by the underlying land



Legal Definition of support (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act or process of supporting : the condition of being supported pledged the candidate their support
2 : a means of obtaining the necessities of life (as food, shelter, and clothing) : a source of livelihood especially in the form of alimony or child support
3 : something that provides support

More from Merriam-Webster on support

Nglish: Translation of support for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of support for Arabic Speakers


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