[ uhn-der-pin-ing ]
/ ˈʌn dərˌpɪn ɪŋ /


a system of supports beneath a wall or the like.
Often underpinnings. a foundation or basis: to uncover the emotional underpinnings of an illness.
underpinnings, Informal.
  1. underwear, especially women's underwear.
  2. the legs.

Origin of underpinning

First recorded in 1480–90; under + pin + -ing1

Definition for underpinning (2 of 2)

[ uhn-der-pin ]
/ ˌʌn dərˈpɪn /

verb (used with object), un·der·pinned, un·der·pin·ning.

to prop up or support from below; strengthen, as by reinforcing a foundation.
to replace or strengthen the foundation of (a building or the like).
to furnish a foundation for; corroborate: The author's conclusions are underpinned by references to experimental findings.

Origin of underpin

First recorded in 1515–25; under- + pin
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for underpinning

British Dictionary definitions for underpinning (1 of 2)

/ (ˈʌndəˌpɪnɪŋ) /


a structure of masonry, concrete, etc, placed beneath a wall to provide support

British Dictionary definitions for underpinning (2 of 2)

/ (ˌʌndəˈpɪn) /

verb -pins, -pinning or -pinned (tr)

to support from beneath, esp by a prop, while avoiding damaging or weakening the superstructureto underpin a wall
to give corroboration, strength, or support to
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