WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2017
ap•ply /əˈplaɪ/USA pronunciation
v., -plied, -ply•ing. WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2017
ap•pli•er, n. [countable]
- to make use of as relevant or suitable:[~ + object + to + object]applied the theory to the problem.
- to be relevant;
to be suitable:[no object]The theory doesn't apply in this case.
- to put to use;
put into effect:[~ + object]to apply the brakes.
- to designate as appropriate:[~ + object + to + object]Don't apply any such term to me.
- [~ + object + to + object] to assign to a specific purpose: He applied part of his salary to savings.
- to devote (oneself) to:[~ + oneself + to + object]I tried to apply myself to the job.
- to lay or spread on: [~ + object + to + object]She applied the paint to the wall.[no object]This paint applied easily.
- to bring into contact:[~ + object + to + object]to apply a match to gunpowder.
- to make an application or request: [~ + to + object]She applied to several colleges.[~ + for + object]He applied for the job.
(ə plī′),USA pronunciation v., -plied, -ply•ing. v.t.
- to make use of as relevant, suitable, or pertinent:to apply a theory to a problem.
- to put to use, esp. for a particular purpose:to apply pressure to open a door.
- to bring into action;
employ:He applied the brakes and skidded to a stop.
- to use a label or other designation:Don't apply any such term to me.
- to use for or assign to a specific purpose:He applied a portion of his salary each week to savings.
- to put into effect:They applied the rules to new members only.
- to devote or employ diligently or with close attention:to apply one's mind to a problem; to apply oneself to a task.
- to place in contact with;
lay or spread on:to apply paint to a wall; to apply a bandage to a wound.
- to bring into physical contact with or close proximity to:to apply a match to gunpowder.
- to credit to, as an account:to apply $10 to his account at the store.
- to be pertinent, suitable, or relevant:The argument applies to the case. The theory doesn't apply.
- to make an application or request;
ask:to apply for a job; to apply for a raise.
- to lay or spread on:The plastic coating is easy to apply on any surface.
- to be placed or remain in contact:This paint doesn't apply very easily.
- Latin applicāre, equivalent. to ap- ap-1 + plicāre to fold; see ply2
- Anglo-French, Old French ap(p)lier
- Middle English ap(p)lien 1350–1400
- 3.See corresponding entry in Unabridged utilize.
- 5.See corresponding entry in Unabridged appropriate, allot, assign, dedicate.
- 12.See corresponding entry in Unabridged petition, sue, entreat.
Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::
apply /əˈplaɪ/ vb ( -plies, -plying, -plied)
Etymology: 14th Century: from Old French aplier, from Latin applicāre to attach toapˈplier n
- (transitive) to put to practical use; utilize; employ
- (intransitive) to be relevant, useful, or appropriate
- (transitive) to cause to come into contact with; put onto
- (intransitive) often followed by for: to put in an application or request
- (transitive) often followed by to: to devote (oneself, one's efforts) with diligence
- (transitive) to bring into operation or use: the police only applied the law to aliens
'apply' also found in these entries: