Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • transitive v. To support or strengthen from beneath.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To strengthen, secure, or reinforce by passing a rope, cable, or chain around the underside of an object.
  • v. To give fundamental support; provide with a sound or secure basis; provide supportive evidence for.
  • v. To lend moral support to.
  • v. To secure below or underneath.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • transitive v. To bind below; to gird round the bottom.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To gird round the bottom; gird beneath.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. make secure underneath
  • v. lend moral support to

Etymologies

From under- +‎ gird. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Many explanations have been suggested for the greater intolerance of more religiously observant people—that they are more likely to see the world in “we/they” or Manichaean terms, for example, or that moral absolutism—a clear distinction between right and wrong—is incompatible with the skeptical outlook that is said to undergird civic tolerance.

    American Grace

  • This past summer, I had the opportunity to spend time with nearly 60 Teach For America corps members taking part in our Foundation's REALITY Israel Experience, a program that enables corps members to travel to Israel to explore the values that undergird their commitment to public service.

    Lynn Schusterman: Creating A Jewish Culture Of Inclusivity

  • By day, Mr. Mercier the name is a pseudonym is a professor of philosophy in Berlin and has written extensively on the intractable questions that undergird his fiction: Is free will possible?

    Plot-Driven Epistemological Dilemmas

  • A referendum, meanwhile, divorces approval of unpopular tax increases with that of any larger -- and more appealing -- budget compromise that they would undergird, stacking the deck against passage.

    Stromberg: Wisconsin governor's -- and the GOP's -- strange 'budget discipline'

  • Long-range commitment and expertise in state planning laid the groundwork for and continue to undergird today's economic boom.

    Jeffrey W. Rubin: The Roots of Brazil's Success

  • The United States has a covert program to sabotage the systems that undergird Iran's nuclear facilities.

    U.S. power plants at risk of attack by computer worm like Stuxnet

  • The White House had been working quietly for several days to undergird efforts by the crown prince and a small group of other Bahraini leaders to end the crackdown and begin implementing some of the political and economic changes demanded by protesters, according to two senior administration officials and a former intelligence official familiar with the diplomatic effort.

    Bahrain unrest: U.S. lobbying effort preceded easing of crackdown on protesters

  • Unless progressives cultivate the enlightened virtues they publicly profess and free themselves from the dogmatic beliefs that undergird their political ambitions, we can expect even more harrowing outbursts to come.

    The Debt Deal and the Progressive Crack-Up

  • Although he calls them "nonconformists," he concludes that in important ways they epitomize tradition: Firm believers in the values that undergird a system they hold dear, whether it be a society or a code of professional ethics, they abhor the notion of crime committed in its name.

    When Risky Is Right

  • The old paths were created to undergird every century and every life, whether it was someone born back in 33 a.d. or someone born in 2000 a.d.

    Archive 2009-02-01

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