use

verb
\ ˈyüz How to pronounce use (audio) \
used\ ˈyüzd How to pronounce used (audio) , in the phrase "used to" usually  ˈyüs(t) \; using\ ˈyü-​ziŋ How to pronounce using (audio) \

Definition of use

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to put into action or service : avail oneself of : employ
2 : to expend or consume by putting to use often used with up
3 : stand sense 1d the house could use a coat of paint
4 : to consume or take (liquor, drugs, etc.) regularly
5 : to carry out a purpose or action by means of : utilize also : manipulate sense 2b used him selfishly
6 : to behave toward : act with regard to : treat used the prisoners cruelly
7 archaic : accustom, habituate

intransitive verb

1 used in the past with to to indicate a former fact or statewe used to go more oftendidn't use to smoke
2 : to take illicit drugs regularly

use

noun
\ ˈyüs How to pronounce use (audio) \

Definition of use (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : the act or practice of employing something : employment, application he made good use of his spare time
b : the fact or state of being used a dish in daily use
c : a method or manner of employing or applying something gained practice in the use of the camera
2a : the privilege or benefit of using something gave him the use of her car
b : the ability or power to use something (such as a limb or faculty)
c : the legal enjoyment of property that consists in its employment, occupation, exercise, or practice
3a : a particular service or end put learning to practical use
b : the quality of being suitable for employment saving things that might be of use
c : good sense 2b it's no use arguing
d : the occasion or need to employ took only what they had use for
4 : a favorable attitude : liking had no use for modern art
5a : the benefit in law of one or more persons specifically : the benefit or profit of property established in one other than the legal possessor
b : a legal arrangement by which such benefits and profits are so established
6a(1) : habitual or customary usage
(2) : an individual habit or group custom
b : a liturgical form or observance especially : a liturgy having modifications peculiar to a local church or religious order

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Choose the Right Synonym for use

Verb

use, employ, utilize mean to put into service especially to attain an end. use implies availing oneself of something as a means or instrument to an end. willing to use any means to achieve her ends employ suggests the use of a person or thing that is available but idle, inactive, or disengaged. looking for better ways to employ their skills utilize may suggest the discovery of a new, profitable, or practical use for something. an old wooden bucket utilized as a planter

Examples of use in a Sentence

Verb I need to use the phone when you're done. The machine is easy to use. After the accident, she could no longer use her legs. We use only organic fertilizers on our farm. They make paper using traditional Japanese methods. He used his time there well. Which accountant do you use? a new kind of light bulb that uses very little electricity Did you use all the eggs? Who used the last match? Noun Two players were suspended for illegal drug use. Doctors have found a new use for the drug. According to the dictionary, the word has two uses.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The loans are intended to be forgiven entirely if businesses keep their workers on the payroll for eight weeks after the loans were granted and use the money for payroll, rent, mortgage interest or utilities. Natalie Walters, Dallas News, "More than $6.2 billion to 15,000-plus businesses: New data shows how D-FW raked in PPP loans," 7 July 2020 Hope is a boxy satellite the size of a small car that will use three main instruments—an imager and two gas spectrometers—to study the Martian atmosphere. Daniel Oberhaus, Wired, "The UAE’s First Mars Mission Is a Robo-Meteorologist," 6 July 2020 Both companies, like other on-demand services that use gig workers, say an employment model would devastate their business models. Carolyn Said, SFChronicle.com, "Uber pays $2.65 billion for Postmates in all-stock deal," 6 July 2020 Poupard added that telecom companies that already use Huawei would be allowed to continue doing so for periods that would vary between three and eight years. William Booth, Washington Post, "Britain may further limit Huawei in 5G, a win for Washington and blow to China," 6 July 2020 There is also a large variation in Internet connectivity by firms in sub-Saharan Africa — only about 60% of businesses use email for business compared to about 85% in Europe and Central Asia. CNN, "Low internet access is driving inequality," 5 July 2020 With their support, Hardesty was able to coalesce enough buy-in to eliminate three specialty teams from the police budget and a promise to use the money for investments for the Black community. oregonlive, "Police cuts give Portland alternative first responder program a boost -- but can it respond to the moment?," 4 July 2020 This scenario would enable teachers to use class time for more than delivering traditional lectures. Alec Johnson, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Here's what school might look like in the Milwaukee area when it returns this fall," 3 July 2020 Son said in May that SoftBank will use its own cash for the second Vision Fund for now, until an improved investment performance attracts outside partners. Min Jeong Lee, Fortune, "SoftBank shares shake off WeWork losses to hit one year high," 3 July 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Mission Peak Regional Preserve near Fremont, another that received high use, was evacuated after a 100-acre brush fire flared on adjacent private land along Calaveras Road. Tom Stienstra, SFChronicle.com, "Busy parks, masks, distancing the rule of the day for Fourth of July," 5 July 2020 Residents are encouraged to take active steps in reducing smog by driving less, delaying mowing lawns until evening, avoiding refueling cars during daylight hours and reducing electricity use. Miriam Marini, Detroit Free Press, "Another Ozone Action day declared in southeast Michigan," 5 July 2020 On June 27, an officer located a vehicle that was entered as unauthorized use out of the Columbus Police Department. Cheryl Higley, cleveland, "Man crashes car into tree lawn: North Ridgeville police blotter," 5 July 2020 Neil Young is once again unhappy with Donald Trump's use of his music during a public event. Rasha Ali, USA TODAY, "Neil Young is 'not ok' with Donald Trump using his music at Mount Rushmore event," 5 July 2020 There has been much mixed messaging on whether wearing a mask protects you from transmitting or catching the Covid-19, with the World Health Organization (WHO) initially not recommending use of face coverings. Angela Dewan, CNN, "As US cases rise, here are tips from afar on how to keep coronavirus in check this holiday weekend," 4 July 2020 More road use is expected as the summer unfolds and Americans turn to road trips for a vacation option. Washington Post, "People are driving less and skipping the toll roads, leaving less money for local projects," 4 July 2020 The e-tron S defaults to rear-wheel drive under gentle use, with the front motor adding performance when required, or increasing stability when the back starts to run short on grip. Mike Duff, Car and Driver, "Audi e-tron EV Adds High-Performance S Model with 496 HP," 3 July 2020 The Jensen Hughes company plans to review use of force training, bias-free policing, accountability, supervision, community engagement and more in LMPD, according to Fischer's office. Sarah Ladd, The Courier-Journal, "Hillard Heintze firm to conduct top to bottom review of LMPD amid Breonna Taylor protests," 3 July 2020

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

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 7

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for use

Noun

Middle English us, from Anglo-French, from Latin usus, from uti to use

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Time Traveler for use

Time Traveler

The first known use of use was in the 13th century

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Statistics for use

Last Updated

9 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Use.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/use. Accessed 13 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for use

use

verb
How to pronounce use (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of use

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to do something with (an object, machine, person, method, etc.) in order to accomplish a task, do an activity, etc.
: to take (something) from a supply in order to function or to do a task
used to say that something is needed or to ask if something is needed or wanted usually used with can or could

use

noun
How to pronounce use (audio)

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

: the act of using something
: the state of being used
: a way in which something is or can be used

use

verb
\ ˈyüz How to pronounce use (audio) \
used\ ˈyüzd , in the phrase "used to" usually ˈyüst \; using\ ˈyü-​ziŋ \

Kids Definition of use

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to put into action or service : make use of use tools use good English
2 used with to to show a former custom, fact, or stateGrandma said winters used to be harder.
3 : to take into the body people who use drugs I don't use sugar in tea.
4 : to do something by means of Be sure to use care.
5 : to behave toward : treat He used the children kindly.
use up
: to make complete use of : exhaust We used up the supply of firewood within a week.

Other Words from use

user noun

use

noun
\ ˈyüs How to pronounce use (audio) \

Kids Definition of use (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act of putting something into action or service put knowledge to use
2 : the fact or state of being put into action or service a book in daily use
3 : way of putting into action or service the proper use of tools
4 : the ability or power to put something into action or service It's a blessing to have the use of one's legs.
5 : the quality or state of being useful
6 : a reason or need to put into action or service I've no use for it.
7 : liking We have no use for mean people.

use

noun
\ ˈyüs How to pronounce use (audio) \

Legal Definition of use

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : an arrangement in which property is granted to another with the trust and confidence that the grantor or another is entitled to the beneficial enjoyment of it — see also trust

Note: Uses originated in early English law and were the origin of the modern trust. Uses became popular in medieval England, where they were often secretly employed as a method of evading laws (as those prohibiting mortmain) and penalties (as attainder) and to defeat creditors. In response, the Statute of Uses was enacted in 1535. The purpose of the Statute was to execute the use, investing the legal ownership of the property in the cestui que use, or one entitled to the beneficial enjoyment, and abolishing the ownership of the grantee. The Statute did not have blanket application, however. Certain uses, particularly those in which the grantee was not merely a passive holder of the property, were not executed under the Statute. These uses were called trusts, and they were the basis of the modern trust.

b : the right to the utilization and benefit of property to which legal title is held by another the secret conveyance of uses in early English law broadly : the fact or right of having the benefits and profits of property
beneficial use
: the use of a cestui que use analogous to a beneficial interest in a trust : use sense 1b
resulting use
: a use that equity attributes back to a grantor when there is no person declared to receive it or no transfer of consideration
shifting use
: a use that is transferred or takes effect in derogation of some estate upon the happening of a future event
springing use
: a use that arises upon the happening of a future event and is not in derogation of any other estate
2 : the utilization of property, resources, or services
beneficial use
1 : use of property that allows an owner to derive a benefit or profit in the exercise of a basic property right the owner was entitled to just compensation when he was forced to sacrifice all beneficial use of the property — see also unnecessary hardship — compare taking
2 : use of water for a reasonable or beneficial purpose consistent with the public interest authorize the diversion of water for beneficial use
conditional use
: use of property in a zone for a particular purpose that is allowed under conditions set forth in a zoning ordinance : special exception
fair use
: a use of copyrighted material that does not constitute an infringement of the copyright provided the use is fair and reasonable and does not substantially impair the value of the work or the profits expected from it by its owner also : the privilege of making a fair use of copyrighted work

Note: Among the factors determining if a use of a copyrighted work is a fair use are these: the purpose of the use, the character of the use (as in being commercial or educational in nature), the nature of the copyrighted work, and the amount of the work used.

nonconforming use
: use of property in a manner that does not conform to the restrictions of a zoning law (as an ordinance) specifically : use in lawful existence when a restriction takes effect and so allowed to continue
public use
1 : use by or to the benefit of the public broadly : use that serves a legitimate or conceivable public purpose nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation U.S. Constitution amend. V — see also eminent domain — compare taking

Note: If a taking of property is not for public use then the consent of the owner is required.

2 : use of an invention by one who is under no limitation, restriction, or obligation of secrecy to the inventor

Note: Under federal law one is not entitled to a patent for an invention that was in public use more than a year prior to the date of application for the patent.

reasonable use
1 : a use of one's property or of water that is for a suitable and beneficial purpose and that does not lead to unreasonable interference with another's use of property or with the natural flow of water
2a : a rule whereby one may alter the natural flow of a watercourse as part of the reasonable use of property even though some harm results to another landowner
b : a rule whereby a use of the water under the surface of one's land that causes harm to an adjacent landowner is reasonable if made for a suitable purpose in connection with the overlying land

Note: This rule originated when cities began to use land in the country for wells that caused injury to adjacent farmers; the water was not for use there and so unreasonableness ultimately depended not on waste or harm but on the final destination of the water.

c : a rule that recognizes a landowner as entitled to make a reasonable use of property if it does not cause unreasonable harm to another and that may be applied to the alteration of a watercourse, the drainage of surface water, and the use of water beneath the surface
3 : utilization of a motor vehicle in a manner that is not completely foreign to its purpose insurance for accidents arising from the ownership, maintenance, or use of the car
\ ˈyüz How to pronounce use (audio) \
used; using

Legal Definition of use (Entry 2 of 2)

: to put into service : have enjoyment of

Other Words from use

user noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on use

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for use

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with use

Spanish Central: Translation of use

Nglish: Translation of use for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of use for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about use

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