pro·​pose | \ prə-ˈpōz How to pronounce propose (audio) \
proposed; proposing

Definition of propose

intransitive verb

1 : to form or put forward a plan or intention man proposes, but God disposes
2 obsolete : to engage in talk or discussion
3 : to make an offer of marriage

transitive verb

1a : to set before the mind (as for discussion, imitation, or action) propose a plan for settling the dispute
b : to set before someone and especially oneself as an aim or intent proposed to spend the summer in Italy
2a : to set forth for acceptance or rejection propose terms for peace propose a topic for debate
b : to recommend to fill a place or vacancy : nominate propose them for membership
c : to offer as a toast propose the happiness of the couple

Other Words from propose

proposer noun

Examples of propose in a Sentence

The scientists proposed a new theory. The mayor proposed a plan for a new bridge. Several senators have proposed raising the tax. I propose that we revise the bylaws. They propose to buy a new house. How do you propose solving this problem? The chairman proposed the young executive as a candidate for promotion. See More
Recent Examples on the Web Due to their isolation, the polar bears are so genetically distinct that the researchers propose that the southeastern Greenland polar bears should be considered the 20th subpopulation of the species. Ashley Strickland, CNN, 16 June 2022 He is also expected to announce more than $300 million in assistance to address food insecurity in the region and propose changes to the Inter-American Development Bank. Tarini Parti, WSJ, 8 June 2022 At Monday's press briefing, Jean-Pierre indicated that even if the senators ultimately propose a package that falls far short of the wish list Biden outlined in prime-time remarks last week, incremental changes would be acceptable to Biden. Libby Cathey, ABC News, 7 June 2022 When one fan asked if Hough would propose on the show, the couple immediately burst out laughing. Stephanie Kaloi,, 3 June 2022 And there was more bad news last month when the CAC was due to wrap up its cybersecurity probe of Didi and propose suitable punishments for the company. Yvonne Lau, Fortune, 23 May 2022 Damon says that supporters anticipated that someone might propose a compromise amendment, restoring only part of the original budget. Peter Greene, Forbes, 17 May 2022 The two continued to correspond, keeping their romance secret, and Prince Rainier would propose seven months later in America in December 1955. Emily Burack, Town & Country, 16 May 2022 In fact, the pro is going so far as to propose it as an alternative to the nonchalant red lip that is as synonymous with Gallic fashion as vintage Levi 501s. Lauren Valenti, Vogue, 11 May 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of propose

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

History and Etymology for propose

Middle English, from Anglo-French purposer, proposer, from Latin proponere (perfect indicative proposui) — more at propound

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Time Traveler for propose

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near propose



propose a toast

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Last Updated

20 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Propose.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Jun. 2022.

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More Definitions for propose


pro·​pose | \ prə-ˈpōz How to pronounce propose (audio) \
proposed; proposing

Kids Definition of propose

1 : to make a suggestion to be thought over and talked about : suggest
2 : to make plans : intend How do you propose to pay for a new bike?
3 : to make an offer of marriage
4 : to suggest (someone) for filling a place or position I proposed my teacher for the award.

More from Merriam-Webster on propose

Nglish: Translation of propose for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of propose for Arabic Speakers


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