[ suh-pawrt, -pohrt ]
/ səˈpɔrt, -ˈpoʊrt /

verb (used with object)



(of hosiery) made with elasticized fibers so as to fit snugly on the legs, thereby aiding circulation, relieving fatigue, etc.

Origin of support

1350–1400; (v.) Middle English supporten < Middle French supporter < Medieval Latin supportāre to endure (Latin: to convey), equivalent to sup- sup- + portāre to carry (see port5); (noun) Middle English, derivative of the v.


synonym study for support

1, 6. Support, maintain, sustain, uphold all mean to hold up and to preserve. To support is to hold up or add strength to, literally or figuratively: The columns support the roof. To maintain is to support so as to preserve intact: to maintain an attitude of defiance. To sustain, a rather elevated word, suggests completeness and adequacy in supporting: The court sustained his claim. Uphold applies especially to supporting or backing another, as in a statement, opinion, or belief: to uphold the rights of a minority. 13. See living.

historical usage of support

The English noun support derives from the verb support. The verb comes from Middle English supporten, soport, supporte, from Anglo-French and Middle French subporter, supporter, originally “to suffer patiently, endure,” then “to come to the help of,” and later “to be in favor of, encourage.” The Middle French subporter clearly shows its Latin original, supportāre (also subportāre ), which in Latin means only “to transport or carry (supplies) to a place.” The other senses of supportāre arose in Medieval Latin. Supportāre is a compound verb made up of the preposition and prefix sub, sub- (here in the sense “movement or position up close to”) and the simple verb portāre “to carry, convey, transport.” Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Examples from the Web for supporting

British Dictionary definitions for supporting (1 of 2)

/ (səˈpɔːtɪŋ) /


(of a role) being a fairly important but not leading part, esp in a play or film
(of an actor or actress) playing a supporting role

British Dictionary definitions for supporting (2 of 2)

/ (səˈpɔːt) /

verb (tr)


Derived forms of support

supportless, adjective

Word Origin for support

C14: from Old French supporter, from Latin supportāre to bring, from sub- up + portāre to carry
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

Medical definitions for supporting

[ sə-pôrt ]



The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.