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[pruh-vahyd] /prəˈvaɪd/
verb (used with object), provided, providing.
to make available; furnish:
to provide employees with various benefits.
to supply or equip:
to provide the army with new fighter planes.
to afford or yield.
Law. to arrange for or stipulate beforehand, as by a provision or proviso.
Archaic. to prepare or procure beforehand.
verb (used without object), provided, providing.
to take measures with due foresight (usually followed by for or against).
to make arrangements for supplying means of support, money, etc. (usually followed by for):
He provided for his children in his will.
to supply means of support (often followed by for):
to provide for oneself.
late Middle English
1375-1425; late Middle English providen < Latin prōvidēre to foresee, look after, provide for, equivalent to prō- pro-1 + vidēre to see
Related forms
providable, adjective
overprovide, verb (used with object), overprovided, overproviding.
preprovide, verb (used with object), preprovided, preproviding.
unprovidable, adjective
1. give, render. 3. produce. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for provides
  • Fur even grows on the bottom of their paws, which protects against cold surfaces and provides a good grip on ice.
  • He holds an altimeter, which provides preliminary readings of the distance below the surface by measuring barometric pressure.
  • When asleep, it's green color provides effective camouflage.
  • Point out that the thumb is a body part that provides an advantage when using a tool.
  • One way to begin a discussion might be to look up familiar words in a dictionary that provides etymology.
  • Cool air fed by the jet stream, a strong band of wind in the atmosphere, provides even more energy.
  • Here's a helpful glossary that provides easy-to-understand definitions of tricky words and concepts in biology and evolution.
  • The kids' eco-art provides shoppers with a gentle reminder to recycle.
  • The dining hall features floor-to-ceiling windows and provides flexible reception and banquet space.
  • Have students write a journal entry that provides a definition of cultural landscape.
British Dictionary definitions for provides


verb (mainly transitive)
to put at the disposal of; furnish or supply
to afford; yield: this meeting provides an opportunity to talk
(intransitive; often foll by for or against) to take careful precautions (over): he provided against financial ruin by wise investment
(intransitive) foll by for. to supply means of support (to), esp financially: he provides for his family
(in statutes, documents, etc) to determine (what is to happen in certain contingencies), esp by including a proviso condition
to confer and induct into ecclesiastical offices
(rare) to have or get in store: in summer many animals provide their winter food
Derived Forms
provider, noun
Word Origin
C15: from Latin prōvidēre to provide for, from prō- beforehand + vidēre to see
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
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Word Origin and History for provides



early 15c., from Latin providere "look ahead, prepare, supply, act with foresight," from pro- "ahead" (see pro-) + videre "to see" (see vision). Related: Provided; providing. Earlier in same sense was purvey, which is the same word as deformed in Old French.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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