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empower

[em-pou-er]
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verb (used with object)
  1. to give power or authority to; authorize, especially by legal or official means: I empowered my agent to make the deal for me. The local ordinance empowers the board of health to close unsanitary restaurants.
  2. to enable or permit: Wealth empowered him to live a comfortable life.

Origin of empower

First recorded in 1645–55; em-1 + power
Related formsem·pow·er·ment, nounun·em·pow·ered, adjective

Synonyms

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1. warrant, commission, license, qualify.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for empowerment

empowerment

noun
  1. the giving or delegation of power or authority; authorization
  2. the giving of an ability; enablement or permission
  3. (in South Africa) a policy of providing special opportunities in employment, training, etc for Black people and others disadvantaged under apartheid

empower

verb (tr)
  1. to give or delegate power or authority to; authorize
  2. to give ability to; enable or permit
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for empowerment

empower

v.

1650s, used by Milton, but the modern popularity dates from 1986; from en- (1) + power. Related: Empowered; empowering; empowerment.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper