[strengk-thuhn, streng-, stren-]

verb (used with object)

to make stronger; give strength to.
Phonetics. to change (a speech sound) to an articulation requiring more effort, as from fricative to stop or nongeminate to geminate.

verb (used without object)

to gain strength; grow stronger.

Origin of strengthen

First recorded in 1250–1300, strengthen is from the Middle English word strengthnen. See strength, -en1
Related formsstrength·en·er, nounstrength·en·ing·ly, adverbo·ver·strength·en, verbpre·strength·en, verb (used with object)re·strength·en, verbun·strength·ened, adjectiveun·strength·en·ing, adjective

Synonyms for strengthen Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for strengthens

Contemporary Examples of strengthens

Historical Examples of strengthens

  • This is the hope that strengthens and sustains him in his effort.

    The Meaning of Evolution

    Samuel Christian Schmucker

  • It is a fine thing to quote this as a testimony that strengthens our faith in humanity.

  • The perception of the beautiful grows and strengthens in me.

    Ernest Linwood

    Caroline Lee Hentz

  • It not only strengthens the muscles but the nature of a man.

  • He that wrestles  with us strengthens our nerves and sharpens our skill.

    How to Succeed

    Orison Swett Marden

British Dictionary definitions for strengthens



to make or become stronger
Derived Formsstrengthener, 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 strengthens



c.1300, from strength + -en (1). Related: Strengthened; strengthening.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper