[ awg-zil-yuh-ree, -zil-uh- ]
See synonyms for auxiliary on
  1. additional; supplementary; reserve: an auxiliary police force.

  2. used as a substitute or reserve in case of need: The hospital has an auxiliary power system in case of a blackout.

  1. (of a boat) having an engine that can be used to supplement the sails: an auxiliary yawl.

  2. giving support; serving as an aid; helpful: The mind and emotions are auxiliary to each other. Passion is auxiliary to art.

noun,plural aux·il·ia·ries.
  1. a person or thing that gives aid of any kind; helper.

  2. an organization allied with, but subsidiary to, a main body of restricted membership, especially one composed of members' relatives: The men's club and the ladies' auxiliary were merged into one organization.

  1. auxiliaries, foreign troops in the service of a nation at war.

  2. Navy. a naval vessel designed for other than combat purposes, as a tug, supply ship, or transport.

  3. Nautical. a sailing vessel carrying an auxiliary propulsion engine or engines.

Origin of auxiliary

1595–1605; <Latin auxiliārius assisting, aiding, helping, equivalent to auxili(um) aid, help (aux(us) increased, augmented (past participle of augēre: aug- increase + -sus, variant of -tus past participle suffix) + -ilium noun suffix) + -ārius-ary

Other words for auxiliary

Words Nearby auxiliary Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use auxiliary in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for auxiliary


/ (ɔːɡˈzɪljərɪ, -ˈzɪlə-) /

  1. secondary or supplementary

  2. supporting

  1. nautical (of a sailing vessel) having an engine: an auxiliary sloop

nounplural -ries
  1. a person or thing that supports or supplements; subordinate or assistant

  2. nautical

    • a sailing vessel with an engine

    • the engine of such a vessel

  1. navy a vessel such as a tug, hospital ship, etc, not used for combat

Origin of auxiliary

C17: from Latin auxiliārius bringing aid, from auxilium help, from augēre to increase, enlarge, strengthen

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