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’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘It is the frame that supports the weight of the prop and the child actor, distributing it across the body of the bearer.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘The inspector ran to her, supporting her weight and staring into her eyes.’
    • ‘As I took in the movie my index fingers dug hard into my cheekbones, supporting the full weight of my head.’
    • ‘Any exercise which involves you supporting the weight of your own body is recommended to build bone mass.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘Tractor frames are designed to support the weight and stress of a loader.’
    • ‘A structure this heavy would require an extremely strong foundation to support its weight.’
    • ‘Everything one does during the day tests the spine's ability to support body weight.’
    • ‘They used a steel beam to support the weight of the upstairs ones in an attempt to preserve as many of them as possible.’
    • ‘I do not look like a fat man simply because I am tall and can support a lot of weight.’
    • ‘Carry heavy objects close to your chest, supporting the weight on your forearms.’
    • ‘James practically carried me out the elevator, since he was supporting my entire weight.’
    • ‘This brings the centre of gravity directly over the right foot, which supports her weight.’
    • ‘The main idea is a big roof supported on only four columns.’
    • ‘A corrugated steel roof supported on circular timber columns provides shade.’
    • ‘Shrubs and the grape arbor, supported on stone columns, give the outdoor room further definition.’
    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’
    • ‘These people are supported financially and given all assistance to be self-sufficient in our community and this cost a lot of money.’
    • ‘He's in love with her but is too much of a coward to leave Vanessa, who supports him financially.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘We are supporting it financially in large measure.’
    • ‘Both donors have established charitable foundations in their own names, and each has a long history of assisting the needy and supporting the arts.’
    • ‘We're supporting the club financially to do that.’
    • ‘We can't do what we do without our listeners getting behind us and supporting us financially.’
    • ‘Embrace your universities and help make them better by supporting them 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.’
    • ‘Thanks to all who took part in the sponsored walk last Friday evening and to everyone who supported the event financially.’
    • ‘Bravo to the organising committee and all those who assisted with and supported this wonderful venture.’
    • ‘Importantly, the bank is financially supported by the European Union.’
    • ‘How beholden are civic politicians to those who supported them financially?’
    • ‘He thanked all those who had financially supported them throughout the year.’
    • ‘He is hoping the public will support him financially in order to meet the living expenses which he will incur.’
    • ‘The research was also supported by grants from the McKnight Foundation and the John Merck Fund.’
    • ‘The work was supported in part by a grant from National Institutes of Health.’
    • ‘The fourth author was supported by a doctoral fellowship from the University of British Columbia.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘Do you support any organizations that provide for the less fortunate during the holidays?’
    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. 2.1Provide with a home and the necessities of life.
      ‘my main concern was to support my family’
      • ‘Men were dedicated to providing for and supporting their family and raising noteworthy children.’
      • ‘Other countries have been perhaps more successful at striking a balance between economic necessities and supporting the family.’
      • ‘All my life they have supported me and provided all the necessary things.’
      • ‘They don't show the struggles his parents faced supporting a cobbled-together family of nine on low-wage jobs.’
      • ‘It also means supporting us and providing for our needs.’
      • ‘Men and women had safe, profitable jobs that fed and supported their families.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘How did we get to a point where none of us can afford to live honestly, earning enough money to support ourselves?’
      • ‘His job comfortably supported his pregnant wife and child.’
      • ‘We need to diversify the economy so that a single mother with a job can comfortably support a child.’
      provide for, provide sustenance for, maintain, sustain, keep, take care of, look after
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    2. 2.2Produce enough food and water for; be capable of sustaining.
      ‘the land had lost its capacity to support life’
      • ‘After all, a river that can hold huge carp and catfish should, in theory, have enough food to support some big barbel.’
      • ‘Fed by upland streams, its brackish waters supported a wide variety of life.’
      • ‘This could signal that Mars, a dry and cold planet, was once an environment friendly enough to support life.’
      • ‘Our methods may have changed but we are still trying to grow food to support the community like our ancestors were.’
      • ‘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.’
    3. 2.3Give approval, comfort, or encouragement to.
      ‘the proposal was supported by many delegates’
      • ‘Your spouse is there to comfort and support you so depend on him or her a little.’
      • ‘We will do our best to comfort and support them in every way while you do your duty.’
      • ‘Your loving partner supports you through troubled waters.’
      • ‘Thank you to my colleagues who have supported and tolerated me.’
      • ‘These nurses are already in post, caring for and supporting patients and their families from the point of diagnosis throughout their treatment.’
      • ‘Luke's family are now being supported by our bereavement care team.’
      • ‘At all times you must support, encourage and help your child but even more so when they are being bullied.’
      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. 2.4Be actively interested in and concerned for the success of (a particular sports team)
      ‘fans should always support their team fully, no matter what’
      • ‘The degree to which an alum or member goes out and actively supports the team or association is an important measure of active loyalty.’
      • ‘Win or lose, we're always there, supporting the team.’
      • ‘I've always supported the Indian team whenever they are here.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘There were cheers and tears among many of the City fans who have supported the team through good times and bad.’
      • ‘Those fans went to support the team they adore and did just that.’
      • ‘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!’
      • ‘He also thanked all those in attendance and all who supported the team in any way.’
      • ‘As a child Jamie had been a football fan but had never supported a particular team.’
      • ‘For those of us who support teams outside the Premiership, the road to success looks farther way than ever before.’
      • ‘The tournament has again drawn huge interest and a large cohort of the student body supports their teams every Tuesday and Wednesday lunchtime.’
      • ‘The FAI has a system in place that rewards fans who travel on a constant basis to support the team.’
      • ‘It is hoped that a large contingent of fans will make the trip to Croke Park to support the team.’
      • ‘He is really a Spurs fan but believes it is good to support the local team.’
      • ‘They have both played for Newcastle and I support the team, so being impartial was always going to be a challenge.’
      • ‘Parents are asked to attend games, particularly home games, to support the team.’
      • ‘It all means that in the past couple of weeks, Germany fans have been supporting their team and others, too.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘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.’
    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’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘He will soon be cast as a supporting actor in a film.’
      • ‘Why do they have supporting actor categories for film, but not for television?’
      • ‘It's tough because as Truman becomes more solitary the film loses delightful supporting actors who could have lent it a light.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘His big break came in 1986 when he landed a supporting role in the film Youngblood.’
      • ‘The supporting actors' talents are wasted in standard-issue roles.’
      • ‘Your family plays an important supporting role, and the transplant team also will assess this.’
      • ‘The supporting actor nominees are another bunch who can be equally hopeful.’
      • ‘A range of supporting roles both in television and film have ensured Hughes has not disappeared from view.’
      • ‘A supporting actor in nearly every role he takes, he routinely outshines those who share the screen with him.’
      • ‘Protein and unsaturated fat reign, but complex carbs have an important supporting role.’
      • ‘Angela Lansbury picked up her second nomination as a supporting actress for another spooky film, The Picture of Dorian Gray.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘In the whole process of planning a new book, distribution plays an important supporting role.’
      • ‘Memorable performances were also given by some of the supporting actors.’
      • ‘Warden is both gruff and gentle, and his performance is probably the most important supporting role in the movie.’
      • ‘There are panoramic sweeps of China's deserts and canyons, a huge roster of supporting actors - and plenty of violent battle sequences.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘Surprisingly, it was the supporting actors who managed to steal the show.’
    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 several researchers who suggest using the neutral zone and no-touch technique to reduce the risk of injuries during surgical procedures.’
    • ‘The data presented in the study supports this suggestion.’
    • ‘These suggestions are indirectly supported by spinal microdialysis study.’
    • ‘This suggestion is supported by studies on the endocytotic pathway of tumor cells performed by other authors.’
    • ‘This finding agrees with other studies and supports the suggestion of sending a reminder to those who have not provided a specimen.’
    • ‘The authors add that this study supports the current recommendations for use of diuretics in elderly patients with hypertension.’
    • ‘This study supports previous studies in the health professions that suggest student moral reasoning can be enhanced during professional education.’
    • ‘No evidence could be found to support any suggestion he had been the victim of an attack before the first impact.’
    • ‘That is an undeniable truth with stupendously large bodies of study to support it.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘The above view is strongly supported by the ion flux data.’
    • ‘Taken together, our data strongly support the biased gene conversion hypothesis of GC-content evolution.’
    • ‘Our results strongly support the hypothesis of a refolding of the unraveled keratin molecules.’
    • ‘Acculturation theory was partially supported by the finding that assimilation tendencies are linked to finding full employment.’
    • ‘The results also support hypothesis 5, that positive emotional contagion will lead to less group conflict.’
    • ‘His answers are at times surprising, but well supported by fact.’
    • ‘The herb's ability to improve vein health is well supported by human studies.’
    • ‘However, time and again these claims are not supported in literature.’
    • ‘Plenty of research supports that eating enough carbohydrate foods before a race will improve performance.’
    substantiate, back up, give force to, give weight to, bear out, corroborate, confirm, attest to, verify, prove, validate, authenticate, endorse, ratify, document
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  • 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’
    • ‘The thing doesn't support Hyper-Threading in its current BIOS version.’
    • ‘All Intel chipsets supporting 533MHz system bus do support Hyper-Threading.’
    • ‘What's interesting about this is that the 3.06GHz Pentium 4 was the first P4 to officially support Hyper-Threading.’
    • ‘One problem with FAT maintenance is the proliferation of implementations that should be supported under Linux.’
    • ‘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’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘Other buildings lurched under top-heavy weight as key supports on the first floors had been torn out.’
    • ‘With the roof largely gone, a new roof was constructed using lightweight steel truss supports instead of beams.’
    • ‘Its 300-year-old pillars are propped up by iron supports.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘A wall is now propped up with supports, the pavement has disappeared and one man's house is beginning to show cracks.’
    • ‘Because plants grow from numerous basal stems that rise directly from the roots, heavy-gauge grow-through supports or support rings are ideal.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘However, we advised against roof supports and column supports in the same assembly in order to avoid differential deflection problems.’
    • ‘Install supports like stakes, trellises, and tomato cages at planting time.’
    • ‘The eastern monolith had then been pulled over a rock-cut pit onto two masonry trestle supports, one at each end of the stone.’
    • ‘He climbed off the concrete supports for the trestle and onto the rocky island shore.’
    • ‘Fallen pillars and supports littered the streets, and all that could be heard was the sound of the wind gently blowing across the marshes.’
    • ‘The supports were standing like great steel palm trees rising sixty metres into the sky.’
    • ‘That was the night she had walked by herself for the first time without braces or supports or a walker.’
    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’
      • ‘He was leaning on the back of the sofa for support and wearing a satisfied smirk.’
      • ‘Sheila found herself clutching the sideboard for support as a surge of vertigo threatened to overcome her.’
      • ‘He seems none the worse for wear, despite momentarily leaning on his scythe for support.’
      • ‘Rolling over is when she is placed on her stomach and lifts her head and shoulders high, using her arms for support.’
      • ‘Matthew grabbed her arm, but she remained upright without his support.’
  • 2mass noun Material assistance.

    ‘the bank provided unstinting financial support’
    ‘air operations in support of British forces’
    • ‘She said positions at risk were mainly those of support staff and teaching assistants.’
    • ‘As a result, it is short of sufficient financial and material support to develop any further.’
    • ‘They have no back up system, no organisation to which they can turn to for support and financial assistance.’
    • ‘To help him with his achievements, he also looks up to the Chief Minister for support and financial aid.’
    • ‘The Covenanters did not lack military support when Charles sent an army north to curb their revolt in 1639.’
    • ‘He added that he would soon seek foreign financial support to ensure that safety is restored at the site.’
    • ‘The onslaught of mobile IT is threatening to send overworked support staff over the edge.’
    • ‘Behavioural support staff are helping to keep a watchful eye on troublemakers at a Swindon school.’
    • ‘She complained that many regularly send financial support to their relatives in Turkey.’
    • ‘We had two footlockers and no promise of material support, but it began a fifty-year ministry in Brazil.’
    • ‘This threat was later followed through with material support to the IRA.’
    • ‘I hope that the public, on whom these bodies depend for material support, will note this attitude.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘Surrey Police already gets less financial support than any other force in the country.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘The intelligence is used to help choke off financial support to international terrorist organisations.’
    • ‘It is true that Ankara is asking for foreign financial support in order to carry out such a mission properly.’
    • ‘If it represents this, it needs the financial support and backing of the businesses.’
    • ‘References will be required and generous financial support available.’
    • ‘We enjoyed strong financial support from our universities.’
    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. 2.1Approval, encouragement, or comfort.
      ‘the paper printed many letters in support of the government’
      ‘she's been through a bad time and needs our support’
      • ‘Finally, I have contacted colleagues who were only too happy to give their support for this letter.’
      • ‘The council said it had received 444 objections and seven letters of support for the application.’
      • ‘He needs to do so to affirm popular and Congressional support for an arduous campaign.’
      • ‘The lack of mainstream support for parents has yet to be addressed.’
      • ‘Letters of support for the proposal were being collected to present to council at a future meeting.’
      • ‘It represents family carers and advocates greater awareness and support for their work.’
      • ‘It is still illegal in South Korea to advocate support for North Korea or its regime.’
      • ‘That has created deep wells of bitterness and a collapse in support for mainstream parties.’
      • ‘Polls in Japan show support for whaling is dwindling among the mainstream public.’
      • ‘There were 14 letters of support for the scheme and eight letters of objection.’
      • ‘I will keep on writing letters to the paper in support for a hospital for Trowbridge.’
      • ‘In fact, I have been extremely encouraged by the high level of support for the theatre that your article has generated.’
      • ‘The strikers have won overwhelming public support for their campaign to escape poverty.’
      • ‘He has received widespread bipartisan support from those who know him and know his record.’
      • ‘Nervous observers sketched doomsday scenarios, but the president received widespread bipartisan support.’
      • ‘They put out their message on radio, television, and in the newspapers and gained widespread popular support.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘In fact, the smaller party's support has actually increased since the last poll in May.’
      • ‘Due to a lack of support, many women give up and switch to bottle feeding.’
      moral support, friendship, strengthening, strength, encouragement, buoying up, heartening, fortification, consolation, solace, succour, relief, easement
      moral support, friendship, strengthening, strength, encouragement, buoying up, heartening, fortification, consolation, solace, succour, relief, easement
      comfort, help, assistance, tower of strength, prop, backbone, mainstay
      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’
      • ‘Health professionals can help men identify these supports and encourage them to reach out, suggests Courtenay.’
      • ‘It is evident that the father has no substantial supports.’
      • ‘We are learning something about the range of supports offered to fathers in Early Head Start programs.’
      • ‘Participation in center programs seemed also to be helpful to fathers through providing emotional supports to them when they needed it.’
      friendship, strengthening, strength, encouragement, buoying up, heartening, fortification, consolation, solace, succour, relief, easement
      friendship, strengthening, strength, encouragement, buoying up, heartening, fortification, consolation, solace, succour, relief, easement
      help, assistance, tower of strength, prop, backbone, mainstay
      help, assistance, tower of strength, prop, backbone, mainstay
      View synonyms
    3. 2.3Technical help given to the user of a computer or other product.
      • ‘In the area of technical helpdesk support, Fraser is also looking to win up to four new clients each year.’
      • ‘It will be responsible for desktops, mail systems, network, intranet and website support.’
      • ‘My main objection regarding Microsoft's whole licensing scheme is the lack of decent home user support.’
      • ‘Even Microsoft has jumped into this with both feet, and not just for home user support.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘Parts and labour were covered, but delivery and call centre support were not.’
      • ‘All of the pre-configured bundles include software training and three years of support.’
      • ‘I do not, like those people at tech support, have a desk to hit my head on and no one can tell.’
    4. 2.4A secondary act at a pop or rock concert.
      as modifier ‘a support band’
      • ‘Once the record was out, we started to do gigs as a support act to bands like A Certain Ratio and Inspiral Carpets.’
      • ‘Roger hopes to arrange for local rock bands to play support during each Keighley concert.’
      • ‘At least normally when the support band's dull you can chat or go to the bar.’
      • ‘Second support band Mistress had small problems with feedback, but that aside proved to be a good set of guys.’
      • ‘The band have asked me to call on their behalf to offer your band Anavrin a support slot on their upcoming European tour.’
      • ‘When the Beatles came to Scotland for their first tour, Soul Band was the support act.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘I arrived a little late, after problems parking, but managed to catch around half of the support act.’
      • ‘With typical lateness, NoiseMonkey again arrived just in time to see a support act leave the stage.’
      • ‘One thing The Sleepy Jackson has done though, is pick a quality support act, in the shape of The Delays.’
      • ‘Eventually he shuffled off leaving half the crowd blissfully unaware there had even been a support act.’
      • ‘The promoters didn't need to know that Mac themselves were the support band.’
      • ‘The review also completely failed to mention the support band, The Surf Sluts.’
      • ‘Performing at the dance will be the Irish band Seamus Moore and his JCB Band plus a support band.’
      • ‘The girls are going to be the support band, so I may try to take some more photos for their website.’
      • ‘He was joined for a drink by sundry members of the support band during the Criminals set.’
      • ‘The Evil Men Do had just taken on Blessed Burning as their second support act for the US tour.’
      • ‘The two support bands were there as well, waiting until it was their turn to sound check.’
      • ‘On the world stage, Galea has worked in Vegas as a support act for Nancy Sinatra.’
  • 3mass noun Evidence that serves to corroborate something.

    ‘the study provides support for both theories’
    • ‘Old evidence provides support only within the context of competition between hypotheses.’
    • ‘The prosecution point principally but not solely to the telephone evidence as providing such support.’
    • ‘Two independent lines of evidence provide support for our conclusion.’
    • ‘To speak differently, such support is provided by the general fact that neurons are causal.’
    • ‘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/