[ in-vest ]
See synonyms for invest on
verb (used with object)
  1. to put (money) to use, by purchase or expenditure, in something offering potential profitable returns, as interest, income, or appreciation in value.

  2. to use (money), as in accumulating something: to invest large sums in books.

  1. to use, give, or devote (time, talent, etc.), as for a purpose or to achieve something: He invested a lot of time in cleaning up the neighborhood after the flood.

  2. to furnish with power, authority, rank, etc.: The Constitution invests the president with the power of veto.

  3. to furnish or endow with a power, right, etc.; vest: Feudalism invested the lords with absolute authority over their vassals.

  4. to endow with a quality or characteristic: to invest a friend with every virtue.

  5. to infuse or belong to, as a quality or characteristic: Goodness invests his every action.

  6. Metallurgy. to surround (a pattern) with an investment.

  7. to provide with the insignia of office.

  8. to install in an office or position.

  9. to clothe, attire, or dress.

  10. to cover, adorn, or envelop: Spring invests the trees with leaves.

  11. to surround (a place) with military forces or works so as to prevent approach or escape; besiege.

verb (used without object)
  1. to invest money; make an investment: to invest in oil stock.

Origin of invest

First recorded in 1525–35; from Old Italian investire, from Medieval Latin investīre “to install, invest (money), surround, clothe in,” Latin: “to clothe, deck, adorn,” equivalent to in- prefix + vestīre “to clothe, dress,” derivative of vestis “clothes, garment”; see in-2, vest

Other words from invest

  • in·ves·tor, noun
  • non·in·ves·tor, noun
  • o·ver·in·vest, verb
  • pre·in·vest, verb (used with object)
  • re·in·vest, verb (used with object)
  • un·der·in·vest, verb (used without object)
  • un·der·in·vest·ed, adjective
  • un·in·vest·ed, adjective
  • well-in·vest·ed, adjective

Words that may be confused with invest Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use invest in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for invest


/ (ɪnˈvɛst) /

  1. (often foll by in) to lay out (money or capital in an enterprise, esp by purchasing shares) with the expectation of profit

  2. (tr often foll by in) to devote (effort, resources, etc, to a project)

  1. (tr; often foll by in or with) mainly archaic to clothe or adorn (in some garment, esp the robes of an office): to invest a king in the insignia of an emperor

  2. (tr often foll by in) to install formally or ceremoniously (in an official position, rank, etc)

  3. (tr; foll by in or with) to place (power, authority, etc, in) or provide (with power or authority): to invest new rights in the monarchy

  4. (tr; usually passive; foll by in or with) to provide or endow (a person with qualities, characteristics, etc): he was invested with great common sense

  5. (tr foll by with) usually poetic to cover or adorn, as if with a coat or garment: when spring invests the trees with leaves

  6. (tr) rare to surround with military forces; besiege

  7. (intr foll by in) informal to purchase; buy

Origin of invest

C16: from Medieval Latin investīre to clothe, from Latin, from vestīre, from vestis a garment

Derived forms of invest

  • investable or investible, adjective
  • investor, 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