undergird

[ uhn-der-gurd ]
/ ˌʌn dərˈgɜrd /

verb (used with object), un·der·gird·ed or un·der·girt, un·der·gird·ing.

to strengthen; secure, as by passing a rope or chain under and around: to undergird a top-heavy load.
to give fundamental support; provide with a sound or secure basis: ethics undergirded by faith.

Origin of undergird

First recorded in 1520–30; under- + gird1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for undergirding

  • They may have been planned, suggests Prof. Baldwin Brown, to carry an undergirding arch such as occurs beneath some wooden roofs.

    How France Built Her Cathedrals|Elizabeth Boyle O'Reilly

British Dictionary definitions for undergirding

undergird

/ (ˌʌndəˈɡɜːd) /

verb -girds, -girding, -girded or -girt

(tr) to strengthen or reinforce by passing a rope, cable, or chain around the underside of (an object, load, etc)

Word Origin for undergird

C16: from under- + gird 1
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