American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- v. To take into one's family through legal means and raise as one's own child.
- v. To take and follow (a course of action, for example) by choice or assent: adopt a new technique.
- v. To take up and make one's own: adopt a new idea.
- v. To take on or assume: adopted an air of importance.
- v. To vote to accept: adopt a resolution.
- v. To choose as standard or required in a course: adopt a new line of English textbooks.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- To choose for or take to one's self; make one's own by selection or assent; receive or agree to as a personal belonging or opinion: as, to adopt a name or an idea; an adopted citizen or country; the meeting adopted the resolution.
- Specifically, to admit into a relation of affiliation; confer the rights or privileges of kinship upon, as one who is not naturally related or connected; especially, to receive and treat as a child or member of one's family, etc.: as, the orphans were adopted by friends. See adoption, 2. To take or receive into any kind of new relationship: as, to adopt a person as an heir, or as a friend, guide, or example.
- In euchre, to play with the suit turned up for trumps: a privilege of the dealer.
- v. transitive To take by choice into relationship, as, child, heir, friend, citizen, etc.
- v. transitive To take voluntarily (a child of other parents) to be in the place of, or as, one's own child.
- v. transitive To obtain (a pet) from a shelter or the wild.
- v. transitive To take by choice into the scope of one's responsibility.
- v. transitive To take or receive as one's own what is not so naturally.
- v. transitive To select and take or approve.
GNU Webster's 1913
- v. To take by choice into relationship, as, child, heir, friend, citizen, etc.; esp. to take voluntarily (a child of other parents) to be in the place of, or as, one's own child.
- v. To take or receive as one's own what is not so naturally; to select and take or approve
- v. put into dramatic form
- v. choose and follow; as of theories, ideas, policies, strategies or plans
- v. take up the cause, ideology, practice, method, of someone and use it as one's own
- v. take on a certain form, attribute, or aspect
- v. take up and practice as one's own
- v. take on titles, offices, duties, responsibilities
- v. take into one's family
- From Middle French adopter, from Latin adoptare; ad + optare ("to choose, desire"). (Wiktionary)
- Middle English adopten, from Old French adopter, from Latin adoptāre : ad-, ad- + optāre, to choose. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“So that it cannot be denied that we may treat the Rebel States as _enemies_, and adopt all measures against them _which any belligerents engaged in a just war may adopt_.”
“Are not the United States now _free_ to adopt such measures as an independent nation may _justly adopt_ in defense of its _rights and honor_?”
“Before long, the two adopt a code word for "all things romantic": dowsing, borrowed from a barely coherent rant by Vanessa's alcoholic mother about her family's gift for finding water underground.”
“The spirit we ought to adopt is to look for the best, and not for faults and failings.”
“Much of the book is dull: and Fathom's conversation is (to adopt a cant word) extremely unconvincing.”
“Why would we adopt a Latin word meaning baby to describe what we already know is a baby in formation?”
“I can only imagine that it might be heightened if one was to adopt from a country like Guatemala or India where baby stealing is alleged if not proven in a handful of cases.”
“Failing that, they'll imply that the only reason gays and lesbians want to adopt is so we can recruit more kids into the Radical Homosexual Agenda, which presumably includes hard-core redecorating and secular-humanist brunching.”
“The plainness that many NOB women adopt is viewed by city women here as somewhat odd.”
“Illinois v. Krull, 480 U.S. 340, 335 (1987) (“The standard of reasonableness we adopt is an objective one; the standard does not turn on the subjective good faith of individual officers.”)”
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