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Etymology 1[edit]

From Middle English supporten, from Old French supporter, from Latin supportō.


support (third-person singular simple present supports, present participle supporting, simple past and past participle supported)

  1. (transitive) To help keep from falling.
    Synonyms: bear, bestand, hold up, stut, undergird, underprop, upbear, upgird, uphold
    Don’t move that beam! It supports the whole platform.
    He staggered away from the accident site, supported by one friend on each side.
  2. (transitive) To back or favor a cause, party, etc., mentally or with concrete aid.
    Antonym: oppose
    I support France in the World Cup.
  3. (transitive) To help, particularly financially; to subsidize.
    The government supports the arts in several ways.
    • 2020 April 14, “Beaten into a Coma for My Faith, Recovered Without Medical Treatment”, in Minghui[1]:
      I said I shouldn’t support anything that deceives people.
  4. (transitive) To provide evidence for; to lend credibility to.
    Synonyms: attest, corroborate, establish, substantiate, sustain, verify
    The testimony is not sufficient to support the charges.
    The evidence will not support the statements or allegations.
  5. (transitive) To serve, as in a customer-oriented position; to give support to.
    The IT Department supports the research organization, but not the sales force.
  6. (transitive) To assist or be involved with, but not be responsible for.
    I support the administrative activities of the executive branch of the organization.
    I don't make decisions, but I support those who do.
  7. (transitive) To answer questions and resolve problems regarding something sold.
    Sure they sell the product, but do they support it?
  8. (transitive, said of electronic devices, programming languages, etc.) To be designed to provide capacity for; to work or be compatible with (a part, accessory, file type, program, algorithm, etc.).
    Synonyms: accommodate, enable, play, run
    Early personal computers did not support voice-recognition hardware or software.
  9. (transitive, archaic) To endure without being overcome; bear; undergo; tolerate.
    • 1681, John Dryden, The Spanish Fryar: Or, the Double Discovery. [], London: [] Richard Tonson and Jacob Tonson, [], →OCLC, (please specify the page number):
      This fierce demeanour and his insolence / The patience of a god could not support.
    • 1881, Robert Louis Stevenson, Virginibus Puerisque:
      For a strong affection such moments are worth supporting, and they will end well; for your advocate is in your lover's heart and speaks her own language []
  10. (transitive) To play a lesser part in the same production with (a star performer).
    to support the character of King Lear
    And the award for best supporting actress goes to...
Derived terms[edit]
The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.

Etymology 2[edit]

From Middle English support, from Anglo-Norman and Middle French support. Displaced Old English wraþu.


support (countable and uncountable, plural supports)

  1. (sometimes attributive) Something which supports.
    Don't move that beam! It's a support for the whole platform.
  2. Financial or other help.
    The government provides support to the arts in several ways.
    • 2011 December 19, Kerry Brown, “Kim Jong-il obituary”, in The Guardian[2]:
      Kim was educated at the newly founded university in Pyongyang, named after his father, graduating in 1964. The 1960s and early 1970s were the golden years for the DPRK. It undertook rapid industrialisation, economically outstripped its southern competitor, and enjoyed the support of both the People's Republic of China, and the Soviet Union.
    • 2012, BioWare, Mass Effect 3 (Science Fiction), Redwood City: Electronic Arts, →OCLC, PC, scene: Normandy SR-2:
      Admiral Hackett: Hell of a thing you just pulled off, Commander. Curing the genophage? I never thought I'd see the day.
      Shepard: Wrex has agreed to help the turians, Admiral. We should get their full support.
  3. Answers to questions and resolution of problems regarding something sold.
    Hyponyms: first-level support, second-level support, third-level support
    Sure they sell the product, but do they provide support?
  4. (mathematics) in relation to a function, the set of points where the function is not zero; the closure of that set.
    Antonym: kernel
  5. (fuzzy set theory) A set whose elements are at least partially included in a given fuzzy set (i.e., whose grade of membership in that fuzzy set is strictly greater than zero).
    If the membership function of a fuzzy set is continuous, then that fuzzy set's support is an open set.
  6. (commutative algebra, of a module over a commutative ring ) The set of all prime ideals of such that the localization of at the prime is nonzero, denoted
  7. Evidence.
    The new research provides further support for our theory.
  8. (computing) Compatibility and functionality for a given product or feature.
    This game has no mouse support.
  9. An actor playing a subordinate part with a star.
  10. An accompaniment in music.
  11. (gymnastics) Clipping of support position.
    • 2008, Christopher Sommer, Building the Gymnastic Body, the Science of Gymnastic Strength Training, page 88:
      Dip down as far as you are able, aiming to descend to the bottom of your sternum. Press back up to a support.
  12. (structural analysis) Horizontal, vertical or rotational support of structures: movable, hinged, fixed. (Can we add an example for this sense?)
Derived terms[edit]
The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.



From the verb supporter.



support m (plural supports)

  1. support
  2. base
  3. (heraldry) supporter

Further reading[edit]



From French (or German) and English support. Attested since 1697.


support c

  1. support (help)
    Synonyms: hjälp, stöd
    Hon fick ingen support
    She didn't receive any support
  2. support (for a product)
    Ring supporten
    Call tech support

Usage notes[edit]

Often in the definite "supporten" in (sense 2).


Declension of support 
Singular Plural
Indefinite Definite Indefinite Definite
Nominative support supporten supporter supporterna
Genitive supports supportens supporters supporternas

Related terms[edit]