Definition of support in English:

support

verb

[with object]
  • 1Bear all or part of the weight of; hold up.

    ‘the dome was supported by a hundred white columns’
    • ‘As I took in the movie my index fingers dug hard into my cheekbones, supporting the full weight of my head.’
    • ‘Tractor frames are designed to support the weight and stress of a loader.’
    • ‘The inspector ran to her, supporting her weight and staring into her eyes.’
    • ‘James practically carried me out the elevator, since he was supporting my entire weight.’
    • ‘I do not look like a fat man simply because I am tall and can support a lot of weight.’
    • ‘A corrugated steel roof supported on circular timber columns provides shade.’
    • ‘This brings the centre of gravity directly over the right foot, which supports her weight.’
    • ‘Slowly raise your body and legs off the ground by a few inches, so that your weight is supported on your elbows, and then lower back to the ground.’
    • ‘Everything one does during the day tests the spine's ability to support body weight.’
    • ‘Whenever I am in an elevator, and I am alone, then as soon as the doors close I act as if I am supporting the weight of the thing.’
    • ‘A structure this heavy would require an extremely strong foundation to support its weight.’
    • ‘The main idea is a big roof supported on only four columns.’
    • ‘It is the frame that supports the weight of the prop and the child actor, distributing it across the body of the bearer.’
    • ‘Any exercise which involves you supporting the weight of your own body is recommended to build bone mass.’
    • ‘Shrubs and the grape arbor, supported on stone columns, give the outdoor room further definition.’
    • ‘Keeping your legs straight, raise your body and bottom off the ground until your body is straight and your shoulders and heels are supporting your body weight.’
    • ‘The sixty-three-ton dome was also supported by reinforced braces.’
    • ‘A structural, or load bearing, brick wall is a wall in which brick supports the weight of the structure.’
    • ‘They used a steel beam to support the weight of the upstairs ones in an attempt to preserve as many of them as possible.’
    • ‘Carry heavy objects close to your chest, supporting the weight on your forearms.’
    hold up, bear, carry, prop up, keep up, bolster up, brace, shore up, underpin, buttress, reinforce
    View synonyms
  • 2Give assistance to, especially financially.

    ‘the government gives £2,500 million a year to support the voluntary sector’
    • ‘We are supporting it financially in large measure.’
    • ‘How beholden are civic politicians to those who supported them financially?’
    • ‘Thanks to all who took part in the sponsored walk last Friday evening and to everyone who supported the event financially.’
    • ‘He added that the Government had financially and politically supported the schemes, the first phase of which would be introduced over the next three years.’
    • ‘Bravo to the organising committee and all those who assisted with and supported this wonderful venture.’
    • ‘He thanked all those who had financially supported them throughout the year.’
    • ‘The research was also supported by grants from the McKnight Foundation and the John Merck Fund.’
    • ‘The art centre is important as it supports my artists by providing a place to work and a vehicle to collect logs, ochres and barks.’
    • ‘He's in love with her but is too much of a coward to leave Vanessa, who supports him financially.’
    • ‘We're supporting the club financially to do that.’
    • ‘Both donors have established charitable foundations in their own names, and each has a long history of assisting the needy and supporting the arts.’
    • ‘The fourth author was supported by a doctoral fellowship from the University of British Columbia.’
    • ‘These people are supported financially and given all assistance to be self-sufficient in our community and this cost a lot of money.’
    • ‘Do you support any organizations that provide for the less fortunate during the holidays?’
    • ‘One of the ways liberals hope to regain that ground is by following the conservative model of running and financially supporting candidates in local races.’
    • ‘The work was supported in part by a grant from National Institutes of Health.’
    • ‘Embrace your universities and help make them better by supporting them financially.’
    • ‘He is hoping the public will support him financially in order to meet the living expenses which he will incur.’
    • ‘Importantly, the bank is financially supported by the European Union.’
    • ‘We can't do what we do without our listeners getting behind us and supporting us financially.’
    help, aid, assist
    back, champion, give help to, help, assist, aid, be on the side of, side with, favour, prefer, abet, aid and abet, encourage
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1 Provide with a home and the necessities of life.
      ‘my main concern was to support my family’
      • ‘Men and women had safe, profitable jobs that fed and supported their families.’
      • ‘We need to diversify the economy so that a single mother with a job can comfortably support a child.’
      • ‘It also means supporting us and providing for our needs.’
      • ‘Other countries have been perhaps more successful at striking a balance between economic necessities and supporting the family.’
      • ‘Men were dedicated to providing for and supporting their family and raising noteworthy children.’
      • ‘They don't show the struggles his parents faced supporting a cobbled-together family of nine on low-wage jobs.’
      • ‘She did have a common law right to be supported and provided with a home, but this was a personal right enforceable against her husband only.’
      • ‘All my life they have supported me and provided all the necessary things.’
      • ‘How did we get to a point where none of us can afford to live honestly, earning enough money to support ourselves?’
      • ‘He unified his state in order to support an army strong enough to defend it.’
      • ‘This means that the added incomes of four farmers were barely enough to support one student for a year.’
      • ‘His job comfortably supported his pregnant wife and child.’
      provide for, provide sustenance for, maintain, sustain, keep, take care of, look after
      View synonyms
    2. 2.2 Produce enough food and water for; be capable of sustaining.
      ‘the land had lost its capacity to support life’
      • ‘Any planet with a stable orbit in that zone might be able to support life long enough for intelligence to evolve.’
      • ‘There are already more people than our planet can support on an ongoing basis.’
      • ‘After all, a river that can hold huge carp and catfish should, in theory, have enough food to support some big barbel.’
      • ‘Our methods may have changed but we are still trying to grow food to support the community like our ancestors were.’
      • ‘This could signal that Mars, a dry and cold planet, was once an environment friendly enough to support life.’
      • ‘Fed by upland streams, its brackish waters supported a wide variety of life.’
    3. 2.3 Give approval, comfort, or encouragement to.
      ‘the proposal was supported by many delegates’
      • ‘We will do our best to comfort and support them in every way while you do your duty.’
      • ‘These nurses are already in post, caring for and supporting patients and their families from the point of diagnosis throughout their treatment.’
      • ‘Your loving partner supports you through troubled waters.’
      • ‘Thank you to my colleagues who have supported and tolerated me.’
      • ‘Your spouse is there to comfort and support you so depend on him or her a little.’
      • ‘At all times you must support, encourage and help your child but even more so when they are being bullied.’
      • ‘Luke's family are now being supported by our bereavement care team.’
      give moral support to, give strength to, be a source of strength to, comfort, bring comfort to, sustain, encourage, buoy up, hearten, fortify, console, solace, give sympathy to, reassure, succour, soothe
      advocate, promote, further, champion, back, be on the side of, espouse, espouse the cause of, be in favour of, recommend, defend, subscribe to
      View synonyms
    4. 2.4 Be actively interested in and concerned for the success of (a particular sports team)
      ‘fans should always support their team fully, no matter what’
      • ‘It all means that in the past couple of weeks, Germany fans have been supporting their team and others, too.’
      • ‘Those fans went to support the team they adore and did just that.’
      • ‘He also thanked all those in attendance and all who supported the team in any way.’
      • ‘That was because this guy could only see how things affected his team whereas I could see the bigger picture because I wasn't supporting either team.’
      • ‘There is no feeling like that of attending Croke Park or Lansdowne Road or Semple Stadium on a day when you are supporting your own team.’
      • ‘Whether you wear what the athletes wear, join the fan club that supports the Team, or just cheer from your living room, your support is appreciated by every athlete set to compete in Athens!’
      • ‘The tournament has again drawn huge interest and a large cohort of the student body supports their teams every Tuesday and Wednesday lunchtime.’
      • ‘It is hoped that a large contingent of fans will make the trip to Croke Park to support the team.’
      • ‘They have both played for Newcastle and I support the team, so being impartial was always going to be a challenge.’
      • ‘I've always supported the Indian team whenever they are here.’
      • ‘The degree to which an alum or member goes out and actively supports the team or association is an important measure of active loyalty.’
      • ‘For those of us who support teams outside the Premiership, the road to success looks farther way than ever before.’
      • ‘He is really a Spurs fan but believes it is good to support the local team.’
      • ‘The FAI has a system in place that rewards fans who travel on a constant basis to support the team.’
      • ‘I also feel that the people who are watching the cricket from their gardens and balconies are supporting our teams and showing enthusiasm for their progress in the different leagues.’
      • ‘There were cheers and tears among many of the City fans who have supported the team through good times and bad.’
      • ‘As a child Jamie had been a football fan but had never supported a particular team.’
      • ‘Parents are asked to attend games, particularly home games, to support the team.’
      • ‘Win or lose, we're always there, supporting the team.’
      • ‘When you support a team you always want them to do really well and when you actually get to pull the shirt on it is fantastic.’
    5. 2.5as adjective supporting (of an actor or role) of secondary importance to the leading roles in a play or film.
      ‘the production's greatest successes are in the main supporting roles’
      • ‘Angela Lansbury picked up her second nomination as a supporting actress for another spooky film, The Picture of Dorian Gray.’
      • ‘In the whole process of planning a new book, distribution plays an important supporting role.’
      • ‘Why do they have supporting actor categories for film, but not for television?’
      • ‘Surprisingly, it was the supporting actors who managed to steal the show.’
      • ‘Now she knows what she wants, her career has become secondary - thus her choice of supporting roles in ensemble films such as Ocean's Eleven, Ocean's Twelve and Full Frontal.’
      • ‘There are panoramic sweeps of China's deserts and canyons, a huge roster of supporting actors - and plenty of violent battle sequences.’
      • ‘A supporting actor in nearly every role he takes, he routinely outshines those who share the screen with him.’
      • ‘He will soon be cast as a supporting actor in a film.’
      • ‘As with any epic event, the recognised stars will be backed up by a host of willing extras who will also play their supporting role to perfection.’
      • ‘This facilitation role requires careful management as the key account manager has to be seen in a supporting role to the relationship and not a dominant role.’
      • ‘Very few stars will agree to cut their salaries to play a supporting role in a film - Bruce Willis is one of the few who has consistently done so.’
      • ‘Protein and unsaturated fat reign, but complex carbs have an important supporting role.’
      • ‘The supporting actor nominees are another bunch who can be equally hopeful.’
      • ‘It's tough because as Truman becomes more solitary the film loses delightful supporting actors who could have lent it a light.’
      • ‘The supporting actors' talents are wasted in standard-issue roles.’
      • ‘Warden is both gruff and gentle, and his performance is probably the most important supporting role in the movie.’
      • ‘His big break came in 1986 when he landed a supporting role in the film Youngblood.’
      • ‘A range of supporting roles both in television and film have ensured Hughes has not disappeared from view.’
      • ‘Your family plays an important supporting role, and the transplant team also will assess this.’
      • ‘Memorable performances were also given by some of the supporting actors.’
    6. 2.6 (of a pop or rock group or performer) function as a secondary act to (another) at a concert.
  • 3Suggest the truth of; corroborate.

    ‘the studies support our findings’
    • ‘This study supports previous studies in the health professions that suggest student moral reasoning can be enhanced during professional education.’
    • ‘This suggestion is supported by studies on the endocytotic pathway of tumor cells performed by other authors.’
    • ‘Our results strongly support the hypothesis of a refolding of the unraveled keratin molecules.’
    • ‘This finding agrees with other studies and supports the suggestion of sending a reminder to those who have not provided a specimen.’
    • ‘That is an undeniable truth with stupendously large bodies of study to support it.’
    • ‘The results also support hypothesis 5, that positive emotional contagion will lead to less group conflict.’
    • ‘The data presented in the study supports this suggestion.’
    • ‘Taken together, our data strongly support the biased gene conversion hypothesis of GC-content evolution.’
    • ‘This study supports several researchers who suggest using the neutral zone and no-touch technique to reduce the risk of injuries during surgical procedures.’
    • ‘These suggestions are indirectly supported by spinal microdialysis study.’
    • ‘Plenty of research supports that eating enough carbohydrate foods before a race will improve performance.’
    • ‘No evidence could be found to support any suggestion he had been the victim of an attack before the first impact.’
    • ‘Recent analysis of the Drosophila genome sequence supports previous suggestions of strong parallels between many fly and vertebrate cell cycle regulators.’
    • ‘The Department of Health said the report contained no new evidence and its conclusions were not fully supported by evidence.’
    • ‘However, time and again these claims are not supported in literature.’
    • ‘The above view is strongly supported by the ion flux data.’
    • ‘Acculturation theory was partially supported by the finding that assimilation tendencies are linked to finding full employment.’
    • ‘The authors add that this study supports the current recommendations for use of diuretics in elderly patients with hypertension.’
    • ‘The herb's ability to improve vein health is well supported by human studies.’
    • ‘His answers are at times surprising, but well supported by fact.’
    substantiate, back up, give force to, give weight to, bear out, corroborate, confirm, attest to, verify, prove, validate, authenticate, endorse, ratify, document
    View synonyms
  • 4(of a computer or operating system) allow the use or operation of (a program, language, or device)

    ‘the new versions do not support the graphical user interface standard’
    • ‘One problem with FAT maintenance is the proliferation of implementations that should be supported under Linux.’
    • ‘What's interesting about this is that the 3.06GHz Pentium 4 was the first P4 to officially support Hyper-Threading.’
    • ‘The thing doesn't support Hyper-Threading in its current BIOS version.’
    • ‘All Intel chipsets supporting 533MHz system bus do support Hyper-Threading.’
    • ‘Axiom's products are now supported under Linux.’
  • 5Endure; tolerate.

    ‘at work during the day I could support the grief’
    • ‘Grief can be supported and facilitated, and depression can be treated.’
    endure, bear, put up with, tolerate, stand, abide, suffer, stomach, brook, sustain, shoulder, weather
    View synonyms

noun

  • 1A thing that bears the weight of something or keeps it upright.

    ‘the best support for a camera is a tripod’
    • ‘If it's a small target, like the upright supports of a bridge or the mouth of a cave, you need a bomb that will land within ten feet of where you aim it.’
    • ‘The glazed edge of the structure is borne by slender steel supports.’
    • ‘The functional requirements of a toast-rack are far less stringent, and this is one of a series of designs in which Dresser plays with different geometrical possibilities for creating a row of upright supports.’
    • ‘The supports were standing like great steel palm trees rising sixty metres into the sky.’
    • ‘The eastern monolith had then been pulled over a rock-cut pit onto two masonry trestle supports, one at each end of the stone.’
    • ‘Fallen pillars and supports littered the streets, and all that could be heard was the sound of the wind gently blowing across the marshes.’
    • ‘A wall is now propped up with supports, the pavement has disappeared and one man's house is beginning to show cracks.’
    • ‘Remember also that you cannot cut any of the intermediate supports or braces that help support the roof structure, so you'll need to work around them.’
    • ‘Other buildings lurched under top-heavy weight as key supports on the first floors had been torn out.’
    • ‘Officers called to the scene found the old-style red cast iron phone kiosk in smithereens with just the four corner upright supports still standing.’
    • ‘With the roof largely gone, a new roof was constructed using lightweight steel truss supports instead of beams.’
    • ‘Install supports like stakes, trellises, and tomato cages at planting time.’
    • ‘However, we advised against roof supports and column supports in the same assembly in order to avoid differential deflection problems.’
    • ‘He climbed off the concrete supports for the trestle and onto the rocky island shore.’
    • ‘Thick wooden supports braced the wall every few yards, and even the gaps in between the logs were filled with a mesh of sticks and branches interlaced like a rough basket weave.’
    • ‘That was the night she had walked by herself for the first time without braces or supports or a walker.’
    • ‘Because plants grow from numerous basal stems that rise directly from the roots, heavy-gauge grow-through supports or support rings are ideal.’
    • ‘Its 300-year-old pillars are propped up by iron supports.’
    pillar, post, prop, underprop, underpinning, base, substructure, foundation
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    1. 1.1mass noun The action of supporting something or someone or the state of being supported.
      ‘she clutched the sideboard for support’
      • ‘Rolling over is when she is placed on her stomach and lifts her head and shoulders high, using her arms for support.’
      • ‘He seems none the worse for wear, despite momentarily leaning on his scythe for support.’
      • ‘He was leaning on the back of the sofa for support and wearing a satisfied smirk.’
      • ‘Matthew grabbed her arm, but she remained upright without his support.’
      • ‘Sheila found herself clutching the sideboard for support as a surge of vertigo threatened to overcome her.’
  • 2mass noun Material assistance.

    ‘the bank provided unstinting financial support’
    ‘air operations in support of British forces’
    • ‘We had two footlockers and no promise of material support, but it began a fifty-year ministry in Brazil.’
    • ‘References will be required and generous financial support available.’
    • ‘The Covenanters did not lack military support when Charles sent an army north to curb their revolt in 1639.’
    • ‘It is true that Ankara is asking for foreign financial support in order to carry out such a mission properly.’
    • ‘She complained that many regularly send financial support to their relatives in Turkey.’
    • ‘The onslaught of mobile IT is threatening to send overworked support staff over the edge.’
    • ‘She said positions at risk were mainly those of support staff and teaching assistants.’
    • ‘He added that he would soon seek foreign financial support to ensure that safety is restored at the site.’
    • ‘The intelligence is used to help choke off financial support to international terrorist organisations.’
    • ‘If it represents this, it needs the financial support and backing of the businesses.’
    • ‘They have no back up system, no organisation to which they can turn to for support and financial assistance.’
    • ‘Surrey Police already gets less financial support than any other force in the country.’
    • ‘As a result, it is short of sufficient financial and material support to develop any further.’
    • ‘To help him with his achievements, he also looks up to the Chief Minister for support and financial aid.’
    • ‘Behavioural support staff are helping to keep a watchful eye on troublemakers at a Swindon school.’
    • ‘It is not possible to vote no without giving material support to those who wish to put an end to the idea of a more united Europe.’
    • ‘I hope that the public, on whom these bodies depend for material support, will note this attitude.’
    • ‘Many heads have said they cannot afford support staff to cover for teachers and may have to send children home to avoid breaking the law.’
    • ‘We enjoyed strong financial support from our universities.’
    • ‘This threat was later followed through with material support to the IRA.’
    maintenance, keep, sustenance, subsistence
    contributions, backing, donations, money, subsidy, funding, funds, finance, capital
    backing, help, assistance, aid, votes, endorsement, sanction, approval, blessing, patronage
    advocacy, backing, promotion, championship, espousal, defence, recommendation, recommending, argument for, arguing for
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1 Approval, encouragement, or comfort.
      ‘the paper printed many letters in support of the government’
      ‘she's been through a bad time and needs our support’
      • ‘He has received widespread bipartisan support from those who know him and know his record.’
      • ‘The lack of mainstream support for parents has yet to be addressed.’
      • ‘They put out their message on radio, television, and in the newspapers and gained widespread popular support.’
      • ‘There were 14 letters of support for the scheme and eight letters of objection.’
      • ‘The strikers have won overwhelming public support for their campaign to escape poverty.’
      • ‘Letters of support for the proposal were being collected to present to council at a future meeting.’
      • ‘Due to a lack of support, many women give up and switch to bottle feeding.’
      • ‘It represents family carers and advocates greater awareness and support for their work.’
      • ‘He needs to do so to affirm popular and Congressional support for an arduous campaign.’
      • ‘In fact, the smaller party's support has actually increased since the last poll in May.’
      • ‘Nervous observers sketched doomsday scenarios, but the president received widespread bipartisan support.’
      • ‘Finally, I have contacted colleagues who were only too happy to give their support for this letter.’
      • ‘I will keep on writing letters to the paper in support for a hospital for Trowbridge.’
      • ‘Polls in Japan show support for whaling is dwindling among the mainstream public.’
      • ‘They are to act as spokespersons, as well as mobilise community support for the initiative.’
      • ‘There's no doubt that this support has come from the middle class Labour vote.’
      • ‘It is still illegal in South Korea to advocate support for North Korea or its regime.’
      • ‘The council said it had received 444 objections and seven letters of support for the application.’
      • ‘In fact, I have been extremely encouraged by the high level of support for the theatre that your article has generated.’
      • ‘That has created deep wells of bitterness and a collapse in support for mainstream parties.’
      moral support, friendship, strengthening, strength, encouragement, buoying up, heartening, fortification, consolation, solace, succour, relief, easement
      comfort, help, assistance, tower of strength, prop, backbone, mainstay
      View synonyms
    2. 2.2count noun A source of comfort or encouragement.
      ‘he was a great support when her father died’
      • ‘We are learning something about the range of supports offered to fathers in Early Head Start programs.’
      • ‘Health professionals can help men identify these supports and encourage them to reach out, suggests Courtenay.’
      • ‘Participation in center programs seemed also to be helpful to fathers through providing emotional supports to them when they needed it.’
      • ‘It is evident that the father has no substantial supports.’
      moral support, friendship, strengthening, strength, encouragement, buoying up, heartening, fortification, consolation, solace, succour, relief, easement
      comfort, help, assistance, tower of strength, prop, backbone, mainstay
      View synonyms
    3. 2.3 Technical help given to the user of a computer or other product.
      • ‘It will be responsible for desktops, mail systems, network, intranet and website support.’
      • ‘I do not, like those people at tech support, have a desk to hit my head on and no one can tell.’
      • ‘My main objection regarding Microsoft's whole licensing scheme is the lack of decent home user support.’
      • ‘In the area of technical helpdesk support, Fraser is also looking to win up to four new clients each year.’
      • ‘Even Microsoft has jumped into this with both feet, and not just for home user support.’
      • ‘Parts and labour were covered, but delivery and call centre support were not.’
      • ‘Some users pay a fee for technical support, but free support is available on internet message boards.’
      • ‘To beat these claims, Kingston provides server customers with free back-up memory and tech support.’
      • ‘This gentlemen was having a problem on his computer and decided to call tech support.’
      • ‘That is done by officers, backed by effective technical and personal support.’
      • ‘All of the pre-configured bundles include software training and three years of support.’
    4. 2.4 A secondary act at a pop or rock concert.
      as modifier ‘a support band’
      • ‘The girls are going to be the support band, so I may try to take some more photos for their website.’
      • ‘Performing at the dance will be the Irish band Seamus Moore and his JCB Band plus a support band.’
      • ‘I arrived a little late, after problems parking, but managed to catch around half of the support act.’
      • ‘The review also completely failed to mention the support band, The Surf Sluts.’
      • ‘She screamed abuse at her managers after the support band finished its set.’
      • ‘We were quite late, so the support band were already playing by the time we had pushed our way as far forward as we could.’
      • ‘Eventually he shuffled off leaving half the crowd blissfully unaware there had even been a support act.’
      • ‘At least normally when the support band's dull you can chat or go to the bar.’
      • ‘When the Beatles came to Scotland for their first tour, Soul Band was the support act.’
      • ‘One thing The Sleepy Jackson has done though, is pick a quality support act, in the shape of The Delays.’
      • ‘The two support bands were there as well, waiting until it was their turn to sound check.’
      • ‘He was joined for a drink by sundry members of the support band during the Criminals set.’
      • ‘Once the record was out, we started to do gigs as a support act to bands like A Certain Ratio and Inspiral Carpets.’
      • ‘Second support band Mistress had small problems with feedback, but that aside proved to be a good set of guys.’
      • ‘Roger hopes to arrange for local rock bands to play support during each Keighley concert.’
      • ‘With typical lateness, NoiseMonkey again arrived just in time to see a support act leave the stage.’
      • ‘The Evil Men Do had just taken on Blessed Burning as their second support act for the US tour.’
      • ‘On the world stage, Galea has worked in Vegas as a support act for Nancy Sinatra.’
      • ‘The promoters didn't need to know that Mac themselves were the support band.’
      • ‘The band have asked me to call on their behalf to offer your band Anavrin a support slot on their upcoming European tour.’
  • 3mass noun Evidence that serves to corroborate something.

    ‘the study provides support for both theories’
    • ‘Two independent lines of evidence provide support for our conclusion.’
    • ‘Old evidence provides support only within the context of competition between hypotheses.’
    • ‘To speak differently, such support is provided by the general fact that neurons are causal.’
    • ‘The prosecution point principally but not solely to the telephone evidence as providing such support.’
    • ‘However, the evidence is insufficient to lend strong support to a hypothesis of positive selection.’
    proof, confirmation, verification, substantiation, corroboration, affirmation, authentication, attestation, documentation
    View synonyms

Origin

Middle English (originally in the sense ‘tolerate’): from Old French supporter, from Latin supportare, from sub- ‘from below’ + portare ‘carry’.

Pronunciation

support

/səˈpɔːt/