[en-kuhm-puh s]
See more synonyms for encompass on Thesaurus.com
verb (used with object)
  1. to form a circle about; encircle; surround: He built a moat to encompass the castle.
  2. to enclose; envelop: The folds of a great cloak encompassed her person.
  3. to include comprehensively: a work that encompasses the entire range of the world's religious beliefs.
  4. Obsolete. to outwit.

Origin of encompass

First recorded in 1545–55; en-1 + compass
Related formsen·com·pass·ment, nounun·en·com·passed, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for encompassment

Historical Examples of encompassment

  • But her encompassment, as is so apt to be the case here, was pitiably mediocre.

  • But mystery I then accepted as the only complement, the encompassment, of what we know of our life.

    Heart of Man

    George Edward Woodberry

British Dictionary definitions for encompassment


verb (tr)
  1. to enclose within a circle; surround
  2. to bring about; cause to happen; contrivehe encompassed the enemy's ruin
  3. to include entirely or comprehensivelythis book encompasses the whole range of knowledge
Derived Formsencompassment, 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

Word Origin and History for encompassment



1550s, from en- (1) "make, put in" + compass. Related: Encompassed; encompasses; encompassing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper