un·​der·​pin | \ ˌən-dər-ˈpin How to pronounce underpin (audio) \
underpinned; underpinning; underpins

Definition of underpin

transitive verb

1 : support, substantiate underpin a thesis with evidence
2 : to form part of, strengthen, or replace the foundation of underpin a structure underpin a sagging building

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Examples of underpin in a Sentence

a wall underpinned by metal beams the central beliefs that underpin a free society

Recent Examples on the Web

Auto makers Renault and Nissan signed their first agreement on March 27, 1999, giving birth to an unusual cooperation underpinned by cross-shareholdings. Stephen Wilmot, WSJ, "Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance Needs to Grow Up," 29 Mar. 2019 Solid economic growth is underpinning an optimistic outlook among businesses. Christopher Rugaber, Fox News, "Survey: US companies added a solid 163,000 jobs in August," 6 Sep. 2018 Lifting the summer ban is expected to be coupled with new restrictions on trading biofuel credits that underpin the federal Renewable Fuel Standard, commonly known as the ethanol mandate. Matthew Daly, The Seattle Times, "Trump to allow year-round sales of high-ethanol gasoline," 8 Oct. 2018 Though the factors underpinning YouTube’s recommendation system are largely unknown, its influence is apparent in the numbers. Yoree Koh, WSJ, "YouTube to Curb Its Referrals to Conspiracy Theories and Other False Claims," 25 Jan. 2019 Scientists have no idea what mechanism underpins this kind of cognition. Katia Moskvitch, WIRED, "Slime Molds Remember—But Do They Learn?," 14 July 2018 Positive economic news from Europe provided a counterbalance Friday as a measure of private-sector activity unexpectedly picked up in June, underpinning the European Central Bank’s prediction that a rebound is in the cards. Sarah Ponczek, BostonGlobe.com, "Energy stocks lift markets as OPEC buoys crude," 24 June 2018 Notes of earth, tobacco and tar dominate, underpinned by red fruit and bright acidity. 2. Lettie Teague, WSJ, "Why Italy’s ‘King of Wines’ Is A Relative Bargain—For Now," 6 Dec. 2018 Without a comprehensive economic overhaul underpinned by trillions of dollars in investments, the unemployment rate for Saudi nationals could exceed 20 percent, McKinsey has warned. Aya Batrawy, The Seattle Times, "Saudi prince’s future put to the test at investment forum," 22 Oct. 2018

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

1522, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for underpin

Last Updated

13 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for underpin

The first known use of underpin was in 1522

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English Language Learners Definition of underpin

: to strengthen or support (something) from below

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Comments on underpin

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


a secret plot to overthrow a government

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