Definition of attach in English:



  • 1Fasten; join.

    ‘he made certain that the trailer was securely attached to the van’
    • ‘You can also attach this to a door to set off the alarm if an intruder tries to get in.’
    • ‘It was understood by the parties that Berscheid would arrange to have the dashboard attached and then ship the vehicle to Germany at Koneke's expense.’
    • ‘It allows 32 devices or stations to be attached to one cable.’
    • ‘It also functions as a 2-inch camera adaptor, allowing cameras to be attached to 2-inch eyepiece holders.’
    • ‘Can hanging baskets be attached to street lights?’
    fasten, fix, affix, join, connect, couple, link, secure, make fast, tie, tie up, bind, fetter, strap, rope, tether, truss, lash, hitch, moor, anchor, yoke, chain
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    1. 1.1Fasten (a related document) to another, or to an email.
      ‘I attach a copy of the memo for your information’
      • ‘I get excited when publishers attach a short scrawled note, but this was a really in depth letter, and very constructive.’
      • ‘Also, attaching documents may give rise to the release of information not intended, hence the importance of vetting attachments.’
      • ‘I've attached a photo from him.’
      • ‘What was initially sent to Mr Croft following this request was an email attaching the two photos with extra text.’
      • ‘Afterwards she sent me an email attaching a picture which she said looks just like me.’
      • ‘He attaches a slightly more elaborate PDF document telling me what's wrong with the government's plans.’
      • ‘Make sure it is printed on good quality A4 size paper and never attach extra documents, letters or certificates - save these for the interview.’
      • ‘We note your statement in your letter of 7 June 2001 that you have not seen this letter and we attach a further copy.’
      • ‘I've attached a picture of ours (click image for enlargement).’
      • ‘I attached the document he needed to send and I copied him in so he'd know it had been sent.’
      • ‘I am attaching three documents that can be used to circulate this information.’
      • ‘Darby penned an anonymous complaint and attached the CD.’
      • ‘Background details can be attached for more detailed information.’
      • ‘I was in a hurry and I forgot to attach an important document.’
      • ‘5 seconds later I realise that I haven't attached my CV.’
      • ‘She also attached a list of piano teachers near me.’
      • ‘For the public record, the complete text has been attached as Appendix I.’
      • ‘We know this because, when replying to the editor, he attached emails from these parties to add weight to the points he was making when commenting on my article.’
    2. 1.2Include (a condition) as part of an agreement.
      ‘the Commission can attach appropriate conditions to the operation of the agreement’
      • ‘While emphasising his party's readiness to sign off on the treaty, he attached two conditions.’
      • ‘The report also challenges donor countries, the World Bank, and the IMF to focus on attaching fewer conditions such as spending caps and fiscal targets to foreign aid contributions.’
      • ‘If a friend or family member gets involved there can often be conditions attached and emotional pressure on how to use the money or conflicts can be created.’
      • ‘However, European Commission regulators attached conditions that were considered too restrictive to make the deal worthwhile.’
      • ‘There are a number of conditions attached: you must be a member of a band.’
      • ‘With that, remittances by Ghanaians working abroad have become more significant than development aid, which is normally delivered with a lot of conditions attached.’
      • ‘Lew sentenced her to probation and attached a condition: she had to give up drugs.’
      • ‘Meanwhile permission has been granted for 32 houses at Craigy, Monasterevin, with 54 conditions attached.’
      • ‘IMF-World Bank programs must not have conditions attached that force poor countries to open their markets regardless of the impact on poor people.’
      • ‘Managers must meet tough criteria prior to certification but this invariably comes with a range of conditions and deadlines attached.’
      • ‘The licensing procedure requires clearance from police, fire, health and safety, local authority, and local residents, and may come with expensive conditions attached.’
      • ‘It's not being harsh but we simply have to attach some conditions because we cannot give money just like that.’
      • ‘That's why the World Bank attaches so many conditions when it sponsors.’
      • ‘But there were still certain conditions to be attached, so far as most of the female players were concerned.’
      • ‘It attached 21 conditions, including the relocation of a planned crèche and nursing home.’
      • ‘When he first discussed the seminar with a senior officer from another government, there were conditions attached, appropriate rank being one of them.’
      • ‘The committee formalised an agreement to grant the caterer after-hours access to the formal gardens, albeit with conditions attached and a fireworks ban.’
      • ‘Certain benefits, such as those embracing unemployment, disability and maternity, have always had conditions attached.’
      • ‘However, we look forward to the day when all farming and management of the countryside is supported through payments that have environmental conditions attached.’
      • ‘When the authority grants such licences, it normally attaches conditions in order to restrict the effect of the anti-competitive aspects of the deal.’
      • ‘It's worth bearing in mind, however, that regular savings accounts tend to have a raft of terms and conditions attached, so read the small print carefully before signing up.’
      • ‘He said we should uphold the principle of free speech while recognising that it comes with conditions attached.’
    3. 1.3Join (someone or something) without being invited.
      ‘they were all too ready to attach themselves to you for the whole day’
      • ‘But by not attaching myself to a place… heck, even a country… I now feel an emotional distance between me and my friends.’
      • ‘The new Liberal Unionist group he attached himself to never made it up with the rump of the Liberal Party, and eventually allied with the Conservatives.’
      • ‘Now the weaknesses have overwhelmed them and Williams has become a raving, paranoid, conspiratorial embarrassment to himself and to any cause he attaches himself to.’
      • ‘A gang of troublemakers which attaches itself to York City Football Club has re-emerged - and a member has posted a site dedicated to the group on to the Internet.’
      • ‘He quotes Adorno in the essay, and like Adorno, he plays it safe by attaching himself to the contemporary establishment avant-garde.’
      • ‘Everybody attaches themselves to a group, a tribe, a caste.’
      • ‘Besides, I didn't really want to attach myself to too many people, just to have them get older on me and then die.’
      • ‘You are a princess, and whether you like it or not, you were born for a greater purpose than frolicking around with that no good, filthy lummox you have attached yourself to.’
      • ‘You believe I have a choice as to whom I am to attach myself to, but you are wrong.’
      • ‘Early coups included pictures of the October anniversary parade at the time of the 1957 Sputnik launch, which he got by attaching himself to a Soviet TV crew.’
      • ‘Now businesses have reasons for attaching themselves to arts events.’
      • ‘However, the alacrity with which other Nato states have accepted this role suggests they think they have more to benefit from attaching themselves to the US vanguard than opposing it.’
      • ‘Something had to be done, and oddly enough, it happened that very same day in the form of a question asked by the girl Sketch was trying to attach himself to at that time.’
      • ‘Many of the characters in the book - the people he meets and attaches himself to along the way - will be dead in a decade.’
      • ‘The larger the thing that you can credibly attach yourself to, the more meaning you get out of life.’
      • ‘He says the problem now being faced by the Home Office comes from a group of racist and xenophobic white males who are attaching themselves to the English supporters club.’
      • ‘I pick artists that I attach myself to, bring them into my fold and somehow turn what they do into what I do.’
      • ‘Bohemians have been Rovers' traditional rivals since the demise of Drumcondra in the 1970s, with skinhead gangs attaching themselves to both clubs.’
    4. 1.4Appoint (someone) for special or temporary duties.
      ‘I was attached to another department’
      • ‘I was attached as security detail to the civil affairs team as they toured the little town nearby.’
      assign, allot, allocate, detail, appoint
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  • 2Attribute importance or value to.

    ‘he doesn't attach too much importance to radical ideas’
    • ‘Why do we attach so much importance to things like our computers?’
    • ‘He is far from being the first British Prime Minister to attach great importance to his relationship with the American president.’
    • ‘Turkey attaches importance to mutually furthering beneficial commercial and economic co-operation with Bulgaria.’
    • ‘She doesn't think it is right the fertility laws should attach so much importance to the presence of a father.’
    • ‘However difficult it might be for the players, staff and supporters, administration is a necessary evil, and one to which football attaches undue melodrama.’
    • ‘The stigma attached by many religions to abortion I believe to be unfounded.’
    • ‘The Scottish Executive is attaching considerable importance to attempts to attract major sporting and cultural events to Scotland.’
    • ‘But if you attach too much importance to that, you'll feel very stupid.’
    • ‘But fans are still worried that the star players might not attach too much importance to the match and may not show off their real skills.’
    • ‘Descartes was neither the first nor the last philosopher who wrote about the pineal gland, but he attached more importance to it than any other philosopher did.’
    • ‘Did the judge attach too great a weight to the appellants' non-compliance with the orders?’
    • ‘A foreign ministry spokeswoman said in Beijing: ‘The Chinese government attaches great importance to the incident.’’
    • ‘We apparently attach more importance to money than we do to human life.’
    • ‘It's no secret that companies are attaching greater importance to human performance today than ever before.’
    • ‘Another remembered Jawaharlal Nehru's words and said that one should not attach too much importance to winning or losing an election.’
    • ‘But it is difficult to avoid the impression that their political leaders attach more importance to the present moment than to the future.’
    • ‘The government attaches the highest priority to the release of the hostages.’
    • ‘Yvonne attaches significance to the fact that James told his girlfriend, another recruit, that he had something interesting to tell her after his spell of duty.’
    • ‘But I expect the American public to attach increasing importance to cleaner environments.’
    • ‘He attaches value to the need to meet sufficient live weight targets for heifers.’
    • ‘He attaches great importance to merit and disdains quotas.’
    lay, pin, place, impose, fix
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    1. 2.1[no object](of importance or value) be attributed to.
      ‘great importance attaches to the family role’
      • ‘That being the case, no importance attaches to the fact that the State of Israel did not exist when the offences were committed.’
      • ‘Much importance will soon attach to robotized means of warfare in underground service lines.’
      • ‘Judging whether any value attaches to the use made of it in these other spheres in any case depends on first understanding the ideas themselves.’
      • ‘This means that the conclusions he reaches concerning cultural values attaching to old age are not in any way tested against records of actual practices.’
      • ‘However, the 5% rate attaches to the value of the house only, not the contents.’
      • ‘Just as society grows, so do common needs grow, and so grows the value attaching to land.’
      • ‘I recognise at once that the damage to the property value as a result of the stigma attaching to this estate is just part of the damage he has suffered by unknowingly buying a house on an estate with a severe pollution problem.’
      • ‘The value which attaches to them can - up to a point - be measured in a price tag.’
      • ‘However, it is unclear why intrinsic value should attach to cultural survival as such.’
      ascribe, assign, attribute, accredit, apply, impute
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  • 3Law
    Seize (a person's property) by legal authority.

    ‘the court attached his wages for child support’
    • ‘Buffalo City is successfully recovering money from defaulting ratepayers by attaching their properties.’
    • ‘They also attached property belonging to Naomi Worth, worth close to a million rand, including a Northcrest house.’
    • ‘To recover the alleged stolen money, he said the unit had attached all Stone's properties here and in Port Elizabeth.’
    seize, confiscate, commandeer, requisition, appropriate, expropriate, take possession of, take away, take, sequester, sequestrate
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Middle English (in the sense seize by legal authority): from Old French atachier or estachier fasten, fix based on an element of Germanic origin related to stake; compare with attack.