View synonyms for build


[ bild ]

verb (used with object)

, built or (Archaic) build·ed; build·ing.
  1. to construct (especially something complex) by assembling and joining parts or materials:

    to build a house.

  2. to establish, increase, or strengthen (often followed by up ):

    to build a business;

    to build up one's hopes.

  3. to mold, form, or create:

    to build students into skilled professionals.

  4. to base; found:

    a relationship built on trust.

  5. Games.
    1. to make (words) from letters.
    2. to assemble (cards) according to number, suit, etc., as in melding.
    3. to create (a character in a role-playing game) by choosing a job class and/or a set of attributes, skills, weapons, armor, etc.; spec:

      If you want to build a Warlock, choosing Half-Elf for your race will give you more spells and magic resistance.

verb (used without object)

, built or (Archaic) build·ed; build·ing.
  1. to engage in the art, practice, or business of building.
  2. to form or construct a plan, system of thought, etc. (usually followed by on or upon ):

    He built on the philosophies of the past.

  3. to increase or develop toward a maximum, as of intensity, tempo, or magnitude (often followed by up ):

    The drama builds steadily toward a climax.


  1. the physical structure, especially of a person; physique; figure:

    He had a strong build.

  2. the manner or form of construction:

    The house was of modern build.

  3. Computers.
    1. a version of a program after compilation, typically an update to an existing version made before the program is released.
    2. the process of producing a software build.
    3. a new version or update of data in a database or on a website:

      frequent, incremental builds of data.

  4. (in a video game or tabletop role-playing game) a set of attributes, skills, weapons, armor, and other items chosen by the player that affect the character’s speed, strength, intelligence, etc., which may make the character more effective in some roles and less effective in others.
  5. Masonry.
    1. a vertical joint.
    2. the vertical dimension of a stone laid on its bed.

verb phrase

  1. to expand, construct, or develop: The team used to manually build out its marketing email list, but now it's automatic.

    They decided to build out the road network to connect the two towns.

    The team used to manually build out its marketing email list, but now it's automatic.

    1. to develop or increase:

      to build up a bank account.

    2. to prepare in stages.
    3. to fill in with houses; develop into an urban area.
    4. to praise or flatter.
  2. to build or incorporate as part of something else: an allowance for travel expenses built into the budget.

    to build in bookcases between the windows;

    an allowance for travel expenses built into the budget.


/ bɪld /


  1. to make, construct, or form by joining parts or materials

    to build a house

  2. intr to be a builder by profession
  3. tr to order the building of

    the government builds most of our hospitals

  4. foll byon or upon to base; found

    his theory was not built on facts

  5. tr to establish and develop

    it took ten years to build a business

  6. tr to make in a particular way or for a particular purpose

    the car was not built for speed

  7. introften foll byup to increase in intensity

    the wind was building

  8. cards
    1. to add cards to each other to form (a sequence or set)
    2. intr to add to the layout of cards on the table from one's hand


  1. physical form, figure, or proportions

    a man with an athletic build

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Other Words From

  • build·a·ble adjective
  • mis·build verb misbuilt misbuilding
  • out·build verb (used with object) outbuilt outbuilding
  • pre·build verb (used with object) prebuilt prebuilding
  • su·per·build verb superbuilt superbuilding
  • un·build·a·ble adjective
  • un·der·build verb underbuilt underbuilding

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Word History and Origins

Origin of build1

First recorded before 1150; from Middle English bilden, Old English byldan, derivative of bold, variant of botl “dwelling, house”

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Word History and Origins

Origin of build1

Old English byldan ; related to bylda farmer, bold building, Old Norse bōl farm, dwelling; see bower 1

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Idioms and Phrases

  • light (build) a fire under
  • built

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Example Sentences

They have a breathable mesh build, but when paired with a wool sock like this one from Voormi, I have no problems wearing them in below-freezing temperatures.

I credit the premium goat leather, simple build, and burly stitched seams for this longevity.

All the extra features and general operating abilities add to the printer’s build, which certainly shouldn’t be an issue if you have an office or dedicated workspace at home.

Blockchain could allow buyers to track their ad’s performance at every stage, potentially eliminating fraud and helping build trust.

From Ozy

For Lee, co-living during the pandemic helped her build trust and a sense of community with her roommates.

From Ozy

Those are saguaro cactuses…the big ones…birds make holes in them and build their nests inside.

Therefore, we should—you guessed it—develop the Canadian tar sands and build the Keystone pipeline.

“He could build studios and he understood technology,” Jackson told The Daily Beast.

The narrator is suggesting that they build a snowman that looks like a minister.

Regardless, few had been given any reason to believe they could build a life for themselves beyond the streets.

They lived at first in a tent; no time to build a house, till the wheat and vegetables were planted.

Now is the time to build for the future, and to avoid paying too much attention to immediate profits.

The birds that build them swallow a certain kind of glutinous weed growing on the coral rocks.

Ki Pak's servants proceeded to build a fire in the centre of the yard and the cook made preparations for getting supper.

And they shall build houses, and inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards, and eat the fruits of them.


Definitions and idiom definitions from Unabridged, based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

Idioms from The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.