See more synonyms for require on
verb (used with object), re·quired, re·quir·ing.
  1. to have need of; need: He requires medical care.
  2. to call on authoritatively; order or enjoin to do something: to require an agent to account for money spent.
  3. to ask for authoritatively or imperatively; demand.
  4. to impose need or occasion for; make necessary or indispensable: The work required infinite patience.
  5. to call for or exact as obligatory; ordain: The law requires annual income-tax returns.
  6. to place under an obligation or necessity: The situation requires me to take immediate action.
  7. Chiefly British. to desire; wish to have: Will you require tea at four o'clock?
verb (used without object), re·quired, re·quir·ing.
  1. to demand; impose obligation: to do as the law requires.

Origin of require

1300–50; Middle English requiren < Latin requīrere, equivalent to re- re- + -quīrere, combining form of quaerere to seek, search for (cf. quest)
Related formsre·quir·a·ble, adjectivere·quir·er, nounnon·re·quir·a·ble, adjectivepre·re·quire, verb (used with object), pre·re·quired, pre·re·quir·ing.qua·si-re·quired, adjectiveun·re·quired, adjective

Synonyms for require

See more synonyms for on

Synonym study

1. See lack. 3. See demand.

Antonyms for require

3. forgo. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for require

Contemporary Examples of require

Historical Examples of require

British Dictionary definitions for require


verb (mainly tr; may take a clause as object or an infinitive)
  1. to have need of; depend upon; want
  2. to impose as a necessity; make necessarythis work requires precision
  3. (also intr) to make formal request (for); insist upon or demand, esp as an obligation
  4. to call upon or oblige (a person) authoritatively; order or commandto require someone to account for his actions
Derived Formsrequirable, adjectiverequirer, noun

Word Origin for require

C14: from Old French requerre, from Vulgar Latin requaerere (unattested) to seek after, from Latin requīrere to seek to know, but also influenced by quaerere to seek


The use of require to as in I require to see the manager or you require to complete a special form is thought by many people to be incorrect: I need to see the manager; you are required to complete a special form
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 require

late 14c., "to ask a question, inquire," from Old French requerre "seek, procure; beg, ask, petition; demand," from Vulgar Latin *requaerere, from Latin requirere "seek to know, ask," from re-, here perhaps meaning "repeatedly" (see re-), + quaerere "ask, seek" (see query (v.)).

The original sense of this word has been taken over by request (v.). Sense of "demand (someone) to do (something)" is from 1751, via the notion of "to ask for imperatively, or as a right" (late 14c.). Related: Required; requiring.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper