- to come to a definite or earnest decision about; determine (to do something): I have resolved that I shall live to the full.
- to separate into constituent or elementary parts; break up; cause or disintegrate (usually followed by into).
- to reduce or convert by, or as by, breaking up or disintegration (usually followed by to or into).
- to convert or transform by any process (often used reflexively).
- to reduce by mental analysis (often followed by into).
- to settle, determine, or state in a formal vote or formal expression of opinion or intention, as of a deliberative assembly.
- to deal with (a question, a matter of uncertainty, etc.) conclusively; settle; solve: to resolve the question before the board.
- to clear away or dispel (doubts, fears, etc.); answer: to resolve any doubts we may have had.
- Chemistry. to separate (a racemic mixture) into optically active components.
- Music. to cause (a voice part or the harmony as a whole) to progress from a dissonance to a consonance.
- Optics. to separate and make visible the individual parts of (an image); distinguish between.
- Medicine/Medical. to cause (swellings, inflammation, etc.) to disappear without suppuration.
- to come to a determination; make up one's mind; determine (often followed by on or upon): to resolve on a plan of action.
- to break up or disintegrate.
- to be reduced or changed by breaking up or otherwise (usually followed by to or into).
- Music. to progress from a dissonance to a consonance.
- a resolution or determination made, as to follow some course of action.
- firmness of purpose or intent; determination.
Origin of resolve
SynonymsSee more synonyms for resolve on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for resolve
They were born in 51 countries and speak 59 foreign languages, but they seemed bound by a single purpose and resolve.Cop Families Boo De Blasio at NYPD Graduation
December 30, 2014
There is the will of the people; the resolve of the political class; the courage of the media; and the authority of the courts.The U.S. Will Torture Again—and We’re All to Blame
December 12, 2014
The city may have learned something about resolve in the wake of the 9/11 attacks.From Ebola Country to NYC’s Subways
October 25, 2014
Modi has ordered his army commanders to strike back hard at the Line of Control to demonstrate Indian resolve.ICYMI: India-Pakistan Head for Nuke War
October 20, 2014
I ask them how can they resolve that with what they are doing.Our Trip to The Climate War's Ground Zero
September 19, 2014
It is a test of our courage—of our resolve—of our wisdom—our essential democracy.
To that end we will devote our strength, our resources, and our firmness of resolve.
Come not near us, if you have resolve to be undutiful: but this, after what I have written, I hope you cannot be.Clarissa, Volume 1 (of 9)
We will meet aggression and bad faith with resolve and strength.
Some have unwisely chosen to test America's resolve, and have found it firm.
- (takes a clause as object or an infinitive) to decide or determine firmly
- to express (an opinion) formally, esp (of a public meeting) one agreed by a vote
- (also intr usually foll by into) to separate or cause to separate (into) (constituent parts or elements)
- (usually reflexive) to change, alter, or appear to change or alterthe ghost resolved itself into a tree
- to make up the mind of; cause to decidethe tempest resolved him to stay at home
- to find the answer or solution to; solveto resolve a problem
- to explain away or dispelto resolve a doubt
- to bring to an end; concludeto resolve an argument
- med to cause (a swelling or inflammation) to subside, esp without the formation of pus
- (also intr) to follow (a dissonant note or chord) or (of a dissonant note or chord) to be followed by one producing a consonance
- chem to separate (a racemic mixture) into its optically active constituents
- to distinguish between (separate parts) of (an image) as in a microscope, telescope, or other optical instrument
- to separate (two adjacent peaks) in a spectrum by means of a spectrometer
- maths to split (a vector) into its components in specified directions
- an obsolete word for dissolve
- something determined or decided; resolutionhe had made a resolve to work all day
- firmness of purpose; determinationnothing can break his resolve
Word Origin and History for resolve
late 14c., "melt, dissolve, reduce to liquid;" intransitive sense from c.1400; from Old French resolver or directly from Latin resolvere "to loosen, loose, unyoke, undo; explain; relax; set free; make void, dispel," from re-, perhaps intensive, or "back" (see re-), + solvere "loosen" (see solve). Early 15c. as "separate into components," hence the use in optics (1785). Meaning "determine, decide upon" is from 1520s, hence "pass a resolution" (1580s). For sense evolution, cf. resolute (adj.). Related: Resolved; resolving.
"determination, firmness or fixedness of purpose; a determination," 1590s, from resolve (v.).
- To cause resolution of an abnormal condition.
- To separate an optically inactive compound or mixture into its optically active constituents.
- To render parts of an image visible and distinct.