vary

verb
\ ˈver-ē How to pronounce vary (audio) \
varied; varying

Definition of vary

transitive verb

1 : to make a partial change in : make different in some attribute or characteristic
2 : to make differences between items in : diversify

intransitive verb

1 : to exhibit or undergo change the sky was constantly varying
3 : to take on successive values y varies inversely with x
4 : to exhibit divergence in structural or physiological characters from the typical form

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Other Words from vary

varyingly \ ˈver-​ē-​iŋ-​lē How to pronounce varyingly (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for vary

Synonyms

contrast, differ

Antonyms

compare, match

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Choose the Right Synonym for vary

change, alter, vary, modify mean to make or become different. change implies making either an essential difference often amounting to a loss of original identity or a substitution of one thing for another. changed the shirt for a larger size alter implies a difference in some particular respect without suggesting loss of identity. slightly altered the original design vary stresses a breaking away from sameness, duplication, or exact repetition. vary your daily routine modify suggests a difference that limits, restricts, or adapts to a new purpose. modified the building for use by the disabled

Examples of vary in a Sentence

The terrain varies as you climb higher. The cost of a room at the hotel varies with the season. Their services vary depending on the customer. They've tried to improve their procedures, with varying degrees of success. The diamonds vary in size. Colors vary from light to dark. I try to vary my diet by eating different kinds of foods.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Note: prices vary depending on the day of the guest’s visit. Sarah Sekula, USA TODAY, "First look: See the new Hagrid roller coaster at Universal Orlando's Harry Potter world," 11 June 2019 Your tolerance for spoilage likely varies depending on the food. Washington Post, "‘Sell By’ or what? US pushes for clarity on expiration dates," 6 June 2019 The shape of the portrait — the distance of the various wings from the main body, and the eccentricities of their orbits — would vary depending on when it was drawn. Richard Brookhiser, National Review, "Moving Portrait," 4 June 2019 Payments to foster families vary depending on the level of care-taking required. Kate Wehr, Good Housekeeping, "Everything You Need to Know About Foster Care, Explained," 4 June 2019 Program times may vary depending on your cable provider or service. Seattle Times Staff, The Seattle Times, "Sunday TV Picks: ‘Game of Thrones’ series finale; need we say more?," 19 May 2019 Projections of the effects of climate change vary depending on how much the Earth warms (usually modeled on an increase of 1 to 3 degree Celsius). Abigail Higgins, Vox, "10 ways the world is most likely to end, explained by scientists," 18 Oct. 2018 How much money that person gets is a complex story that varies from year to year but should be about $2.5 million in 2019. Rich Ceppos, Car and Driver, "Everything You Need to Know about the Indianapolis 500," 25 May 2019 The effectiveness rate for platelet rich plasma treatments varies from patient to patient, but Zeichner says anecdotally his patients achieve about a 25 percent improvement and hair density. Lisa Fogarty, Harper's BAZAAR, "Biotin Is in Every Hair Growth Pill. But Does it Even Work?," 22 May 2019

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

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

History and Etymology for vary

Middle English varien, borrowed from Anglo-French or Latin; Anglo-French varier, borrowed from Latin variāre "to mark with contrasting colors, give variety to, make changeable," derivative of varius "having contrasting colors, of different kinds, changeable," of uncertain origin

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Learn More about vary

Dictionary Entries near vary

varve

varvel

varvity

vary

varying hare

varying lemming

vas-

Statistics for vary

Last Updated

15 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for vary

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

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More Definitions for vary

vary

verb

English Language Learners Definition of vary

: to be different or to become different
: to make (something) different : to make changes to (something) so that it is not always the same

vary

verb
\ ˈver-ē How to pronounce vary (audio) \
varied; varying

Kids Definition of vary

1 : to make a partial change in He varied the rhythm of the poem.
2 : to make or be of different kinds She varies her exercise routine.
3 : to show or undergo change The sky constantly varies.
4 : to differ from the usual members of a group
\ ˈver-ē, ˈvar-ē How to pronounce vary (audio) \
varied; varying

Medical Definition of vary

: to exhibit divergence in structural or physiological characters from the typical form

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More from Merriam-Webster on vary

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with vary

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for vary

Spanish Central: Translation of vary

Nglish: Translation of vary for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of vary for Arabic Speakers

Comments on vary

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