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 attributivelya support staff
3 : sufficient strength in a suit bid by one's partner in bridge to justify raising the suit

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Other Words from support


supportability \ sə-​ˌpȯr-​tə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce supportability (audio) \ noun
supportable \ sə-​ˈpȯr-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce supportable (audio) \ adjective
supportive \ sə-​ˈpȯr-​tiv How to pronounce supportive (audio) \ adjective
supportiveness \ sə-​ˈpȯr-​tiv-​nəs How to pronounce supportiveness (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.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The application for asylum and supporting papers must be in English, accompanied by copies in Spanish. CBS News, "Asylum seekers learn about the obstacles ahead in a hearing room on the U.S.-Mexico border," 31 Jan. 2020 The Montgomery Quarterback Club was founded in 1941 and its main purpose is to support high school football in the river region of Montgomery, Elmore, Autauga, and Lowndes counties. Staff, al, "Little, Thompson are Montgomery QB Club players of year," 31 Jan. 2020 The $1 million donation from Randy and Leslie paid the mortgage for Jacob’s Mission Community Center, the building in east Mesa that Anika, Susan and Angela bought to support children in foster care and help foster and kinship families. Arizona Republic, "An Arizona couple donated $1 million to help foster children. One year later, they did even more.," 29 Jan. 2020 The supporting cast, dominated by first-timers, is adequate overall, despite demonstrating limited range. Justin Lowe, The Hollywood Reporter, "'La Leyenda Negra': Film Review | Sundance 2020," 28 Jan. 2020 Valerie Borden, the interior designer, says that the decor is supposed to be a supporting element to the overall resort experience. Chadner Navarro, Fortune, "Arizona’s very first luxury resort—originally opened in 1896—is back in business," 28 Jan. 2020 The Hatch Act bars federal employees from using their official authority to support a political party, candidate in a partisan race or partisan political group. Eric Yoder, Anchorage Daily News, "Is it OK for federal employees to discuss the Trump impeachment case at work?," 28 Jan. 2020 Cat Ball, head of policy at the Association of Medical Research Charities, has concerns for the clinical trials her organization supports in the United Kingdom. Kai Kupferschmidt, Science | AAAS, "After Brexit, U.K. scientists face a long road to mend ties with Europe," 28 Jan. 2020 There is no question that Garoppolo benefits from having a great supporting cast and a tremendous scheme from head coach Kyle Shanahan. Ben Volin,, "Film study: 49ers’ Jimmy Garoppolo is far more than a game manager," 27 Jan. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Jennifer Melton, Haiti's chief of child protection for UNICEF, said about 80% of the children being housed in the facility still have at least one living parent who can’t provide financial support. Zachary Halaschak, Washington Examiner, "More than a dozen children killed in fire at Haitian orphanage run by US charity," 15 Feb. 2020 The 6-foot-7 star freshman did not practice on Thursday and was seen walking around campus with the help of a crutch for support. Tom Green |, al, "Who will Auburn turn to if Isaac Okoro is sidelined against Missouri?," 15 Feb. 2020 Where families and teachers disagree with administrators, however, is whether the school district — which is big on talk about social justice — is actually providing that support. Heather Knight,, "‘Lord of the Flies’: Fights, bullying, chaos upend once-stellar San Francisco middle school," 14 Feb. 2020 West Virginia Charleston: State residents who participate in a nutrition program for women and children will be able to use a smartphone app that provides around-the-clock lactation support. USA TODAY, "Jornada del Muerto, Livestrong rebrand, Mach 8 tunnel: News from around our 50 states," 12 Feb. 2020 Richardson Superintendent Jeannie Stone vowed her district will promote the program and provide staff support. Dallas News, "Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson announces new youth workforce initiative," 11 Feb. 2020 The Sumlins received support from A&M officials and local law enforcement. Arizona Republic, "Arizona's Kevin Sumlin wants to succeed, win games to help fellow black coaches," 11 Feb. 2020 Some newspapers, like The Guardian, directly solicit foundation support for special projects and also ask their readers for voluntary contributions. Nicholas Lemann, The New York Review of Books, "Can Journalism Be Saved?," 11 Feb. 2020 An effort to recruit high schoolers who aspire to go to college and provide support all the way to graduation has gotten a $1 million shot in the arm. Princesssafiya Byers, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "College completion program All-in Milwaukee gets $1 million gift to guide more students," 10 Feb. 2020

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.

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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

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Time Traveler for support

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for support

Last Updated

3 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Support.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for support



Financial Definition of support

What It Is

In technical trading analysis, support is a lower limit in a price channel in which a security’s price tends to stay.

How It Works

Price channels can slope up (indicating bullish sentiment) or down (indicating bearish sentiment); they don’t have to simply go “sideways.” The important geometric characteristic is that the resistance lines (which are the opposite of support lines; they are the upper limits of the price channel) and support lines are parallel, as shown in this price channel for ChevronTexaco (CVX). The channel lines themselves are often based on multiday moving averages or logarithmic scales that reflect price movements in percentage terms. However, technical trading is as much an art as it is a science, and so one technical trader’s price channel might be different from another’s.

When a stock’s price touches or goes below the support, this may signal a trend change, which is why the support level is very important to technical traders.

Why It Matters

Price channels help tip traders off about trend changes in a stock or "unusual" activity when the price goes above or below the price channel lines (we call this a breakout). For example, a technical trader might buy when a stock hits the support level of an upward-sloping price channel; similarly, traders hope to be already out of a stock before it hits the support level on a downward-sloping price channel.

Source: Investing Answers


How to pronounce support (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of support

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to agree with or approve of (someone or something)
: to show that you approve of (someone or something) by doing something
: to give help or assistance to (someone or something)



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

: the act of showing that you believe that someone or something is good or acceptable : approval of someone or something
: the act of helping someone by giving love, encouragement, etc.
: help that is given in the form of money or other valuable things


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

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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

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

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More from Merriam-Webster on support

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for support

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with support

Spanish Central: Translation of support

Nglish: Translation of support for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of support for Arabic Speakers

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