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[en-hans, -hahns] /ɛnˈhæns, -ˈhɑns/
verb (used with object), enhanced, enhancing.
to raise to a higher degree; intensify; magnify:
The candlelight enhanced her beauty.
to raise the value or price of:
Rarity enhances the worth of old coins.
Origin of enhance
1325-75; Middle English enhauncen < Anglo-French enhauncer, apparently for Old French enhaucer, equivalent to en- en-1 + haucer “to raise” (French hausser) from the unattested Vulgar Latin altiāre (derivative of Latin altus “high,” with h- < Germanic; see haughty), though -n- is unexplained
Related forms
enhancement, noun
enhancive, adjective
self-enhancement, noun
unenhanced, adjective
1. diminish. 2. reduce.
Synonym Study
2. See elevate. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for enhancement
Historical Examples
  • The street card reappeared, and brought on Mercutio to deepen the audience's enhancement.

    A Gentleman Player Robert Neilson Stephens
  • Human strength increases with enhancement and decreases with enfeeblement.

    Epistle Sermons, Vol. II Martin Luther
  • The enhancement of the rate of growth on irrigation with cold water took place after seventy seconds.

    Life Movements in Plants Sir Jagadis Chunder Bose
  • It was a comfort to him in all his vexations, an enhancement of all his joys.

    The Little Lame Prince Miss Mulock--Pseudonym of Maria Dinah Craik
  • The enhancement of conduction under heterodromous current is, in reality, much greater than is indicated in the record.

    Life Movements in Plants Sir Jagadis Chunder Bose
  • To have done with this and the measles was justly considered an enhancement in value.

    Slavery in Pennsylvania Edward Raymond Turner
  • The raison d'tre of such discords is perhaps to be found in the enhancement they give to the resolution.

  • It was a comfort to him in all his vexations; an enhancement of all his joys.

  • The present sentence would not have a deterrent effect, and he accordingly applied for an enhancement of the same.

    Lotus Buds Amy Carmichael
  • Truth is merely a means for the enhancement of my subjective satisfaction.

    Prophets of Dissent Otto Heller
British Dictionary definitions for enhancement


(transitive) to intensify or increase in quality, value, power, etc; improve; augment
Derived Forms
enhancement, noun
enhancer, noun
enhancive, adjective
Word Origin
C14: from Old French enhaucier, from en-1 + haucier to raise, from Vulgar Latin altiāre (unattested), from Latin altus high
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
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Word Origin and History for enhancement

1570s, from enhance + -ment.



late 13c., anhaunsen "to raise, make higher," from Anglo-French enhauncer, probably from Old French enhaucier "make greater, make higher or louder; fatten, foster; raise in esteem," from Vulgar Latin *inaltiare, from Late Latin inaltare "raise, exalt," from altare "make high," from altus "high" (see old).

Meaning "raise in station, wealth, or fame" attested in English from c.1300. The -h- in Old French supposedly from influence of Frankish *hoh "high." Related: Enhanced; enhancing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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