[ pruh-vahyd ]
See synonyms for: provideprovidedprovidesproviding on

verb (used with object),pro·vid·ed, pro·vid·ing.
  1. to make available; furnish: to provide employees with various benefits.

  2. to supply or equip: to provide the army with new fighter planes.

  1. to afford or yield.

  2. Law. to arrange for or stipulate beforehand, as by a provision or proviso.

  3. Archaic. to prepare or procure beforehand.

verb (used without object),pro·vid·ed, pro·vid·ing.
  1. to take measures with due foresight (usually followed by for or against).

  2. to make arrangements for supplying means of support, money, etc. (usually followed by for): He provided for his children in his will.

  1. to supply means of support (often followed by for): to provide for oneself.

Origin of provide

First recorded in 1375–1425; late Middle English providen, Latin prōvidēre “to foresee, look after, provide for,” equivalent to prō- pro-1 + vidēre “to see”; cf. video

Other words for provide

Other words from provide

  • pro·vid·a·ble, adjective
  • o·ver·pro·vide, verb (used with object), o·ver·pro·vid·ed, o·ver·pro·vid·ing.
  • pre·pro·vide, verb (used with object), pre·pro·vid·ed, pre·pro·vid·ing.
  • un·pro·vid·a·ble, adjective

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

How to use provide in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for provide


/ (prəˈvaɪd) /

verb(mainly tr)
  1. to put at the disposal of; furnish or supply

  2. to afford; yield: this meeting provides an opportunity to talk

  1. (intr; often foll by for or against) to take careful precautions (over): he provided against financial ruin by wise investment

  2. (intr foll by for) to supply means of support (to), esp financially: he provides for his family

  3. (in statutes, documents, etc) to determine (what is to happen in certain contingencies), esp by including a proviso condition

  4. to confer and induct into ecclesiastical offices

  5. rare to have or get in store: in summer many animals provide their winter food

Origin of provide

C15: from Latin prōvidēre to provide for, from prō- beforehand + vidēre to see

Derived forms of provide

  • provider, 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