- to construct (especially something complex) by assembling and joining parts or materials: to build a house.
- to establish, increase, or strengthen (often followed by up): to build a business; to build up one's hopes.
- to mold, form, or create: to build boys into men.
- to base; found: a relationship built on trust.
- to make (words) from letters.
- to assemble (cards) according to number, suit, etc., as in melding.
- to engage in the art, practice, or business of building.
- to form or construct a plan, system of thought, etc. (usually followed by on or upon): He built on the philosophies of the past.
- to increase or develop toward a maximum, as of intensity, tempo, or magnitude (often followed by up): The drama builds steadily toward a climax.
- the physical structure, especially of a person; physique; figure: He had a strong build.
- the manner or form of construction: The house was of modern build.
- a version of a program after compilation, typically an update to an existing version made before the program is released.
- the process of producing a software build.
- a new version or update of data in a database or on a website: frequent, incremental builds of data.
- a vertical joint.
- the vertical dimension of a stone laid on its bed.
- build in/into, to build or incorporate as part of something else: to build in bookcases between the windows; an allowance for travel expenses built into the budget.
- build up,
- to develop or increase: to build up a bank account.
- to strengthen.
- to prepare in stages.
- to fill in with houses; develop into an urban area.
- to praise or flatter.
Origin of build
Related Words for build onsurmise, guess, assume, gather, conjecture, fancy, suspect, expect, understand, believe, think, take, suppose, presume, imagine, hope, accredit, stake, trust, venture
- to make, construct, or form by joining parts or materialsto build a house
- (intr) to be a builder by profession
- (tr) to order the building ofthe government builds most of our hospitals
- (foll by on or upon) to base; foundhis theory was not built on facts
- (tr) to establish and developit took ten years to build a business
- (tr) to make in a particular way or for a particular purposethe car was not built for speed
- (intr often foll by up) to increase in intensitythe wind was building
- to add cards to each other to form (a sequence or set)
- (intr)to add to the layout of cards on the table from one's hand
- physical form, figure, or proportionsa man with an athletic build
Word Origin for build
late Old English byldan "construct a house," verb form of bold "house," from Proto-Germanic *buthlam (cf. Old Saxon bodl, Old Frisian bodel "building, house"), from PIE *bhu- "to dwell," from root *bheue- "to be, exist, grow" (see be). Rare in Old English; in Middle English it won out over more common Old English timbran (see timber). Modern spelling is unexplained. Figurative use from mid-15c. Of physical things other than buildings from late 16c. Related: Builded (archaic); built; building.
In the United States, this verb is used with much more latitude than in England. There, as Fennimore Cooper puts it, everything is BUILT. The priest BUILDS up a flock; the speculator a fortune; the lawyer a reputation; the landlord a town; and the tailor, as in England, BUILDS up a suit of clothes. A fire is BUILT instead of made, and the expression is even extended to individuals, to be BUILT being used with the meaning of formed. [Farmer, "Slang and Its Analogues," 1890]
"style of construction," 1660s, from build (v.). Earlier in this sense was built (1610s). Meaning "physical construction and fitness of a person" attested by 1981. Earliest sense, now obsolete, was "a building" (early 14c.).
Also, build upon. Add as an extension; use as a basis or foundation. For example, They decided to build on an addition, or She was building all her hopes on passing the exam. John Locke had this idiom in his treatise on government (1689): “Sovereignty built on ‘property’ . . . comes to nothing.” [Late 1600s]
In addition to the idioms beginning with build
- build down
- build in
- build on
- build on sand
- build up
- light (build) a fire under
Also see underbuilt.