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[in-shoo r, -shur] /ɪnˈʃʊər, -ˈʃɜr/
verb (used with object), insured, insuring.
to guarantee against loss or harm.
to secure indemnity to or on, in case of loss, damage, or death.
to issue or procure an insurance policy on or for.
ensure (defs 1–3).
verb (used without object), insured, insuring.
to issue or procure an insurance policy.
Origin of insure
late Middle English
1400-50; late Middle English; variant of ensure
Related forms
overinsure, verb (used with object), overinsured, overinsuring.
preinsure, verb (used with object), preinsured, preinsuring.
1. warrant. 4. assure. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for insure
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Then came the cartful of our dead, whom we were carrying with us to insure their decent burial.

    Micah Clarke Arthur Conan Doyle
  • Not I, old gentleman; I've got too much respect for old age, I'll insure you.

  • To insure that, he put that note with the other papers of the Company.

    Cap'n Warren's Wards Joseph C. Lincoln
  • He says that I must choose a mate, to insure the stability of the royal house.

    The Martian Cabal Roman Frederick Starzl
  • The top of jar should also be heated to insure a tight seal.

British Dictionary definitions for insure


/ɪnˈʃʊə; -ˈʃɔː/
(often foll by against) to guarantee or protect (against risk, loss, etc): we insured against disappointment by making an early reservation
(often foll by against) to issue (a person) with an insurance policy or take out an insurance policy (on): his house was heavily insured against fire, after all his car accidents the company refuses to insure him again
another word (esp US) for ensure (sense 1), ensure (sense 2)
Also (rare) (for senses 1, 2) ensure
Derived Forms
insurable, adjective
insurability, noun
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 insure

mid-15c., insuren, spelling variant of ensuren (see ensure). Took on its particular sense of "make safe against loss by payment of premiums" from mid-17c. (replacing assure in that meaning). Related: Insured; insuring.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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