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From Middle English ajusten, borrowed from Middle French adjuster, or Old French, from Latin ad (to, up to, towards) + iustus (correct, proper, exact); Equivalent to ad- +‎ just. Probably influenced in sense by Old French ajouster (cf. modern ajouter), from Vulgar Latin *adiuxtāre, from Latin iuxta. The Middle English originally meant "to correct, remedy" in the late 14th century, and was reborrowed from Middle French in the early 17th century. According to another view on the etymology, the word was actually derived from Old French ajouster and then supposedly later influenced by folk etymology from Latin iustus[1].


  • IPA(key): /əˈd͡ʒʌst/
    • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ʌst


adjust (third-person singular simple present adjusts, present participle adjusting, simple past and past participle adjusted)

  1. (transitive) To modify.
    Morimoto's recipes are adjusted to suit the American palate.
    • 2013 August 10, “A new prescription”, in The Economist, volume 408, number 8848:
      As the world's drug habit shows, governments are failing in their quest to monitor every London window-box and Andean hillside for banned plants. But even that Sisyphean task looks easy next to the fight against synthetic drugs. No sooner has a drug been blacklisted than chemists adjust their recipe and start churning out a subtly different one.
  2. (transitive) To improve or rectify.
    He adjusted his initial conclusion to reflect the new data.
    • 2013 June 1, “Towards the end of poverty”, in The Economist[1], volume 407, number 8838, page 11:
      But poverty’s scourge is fiercest below $1.25 (the average of the 15 poorest countries’ own poverty lines, measured in 2005 dollars and adjusted for differences in purchasing power): people below that level live lives that are poor, nasty, brutish and short.
  3. (transitive) To settle an insurance claim.
  4. (intransitive) To change to fit circumstances.
    Most immigrants adjust quickly to a new community.   She waited for her eyes to adjust to the darkness.


Derived terms[edit]


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