Nearby words

  1. buhlwork,
  2. buhr,
  3. buhrstone,
  4. bui,
  5. buibui,
  6. build down,
  7. build in,
  8. build into,
  9. build on,
  10. build on sand

Origin of build

before 1150; Middle English bilden, Old English byldan, derivative of bold, variant of botl dwelling, house

Related forms
Can be confusedbilled build Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for build in

build in


(tr, adverb) to incorporate or construct as an integral partto build in safety features


/ (bɪld) /

verb builds, building or built


physical form, figure, or proportionsa man with an athletic build

Word Origin for build

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

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

Word Origin and History for build in
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with build in

build in

Also, build into. Construct or include as an integral part; also, make automatic, concomitant, or inherent. For example, Frank Lloyd Wright liked to build in as much furniture as possible, not just bookcases but desks, tables, and the like, or We've got to build some slack into the schedule for this project. The literal usage referring to physical objects dates from the late 1920s. The figurative arose a decade or so later. Both are frequently used in past participle form, that is, built in.


In addition to the idioms beginning with build

  • build down
  • build in
  • build on
  • build on sand
  • build up

also see:

  • light (build) a fire under

Also see underbuilt.

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