Definitions

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

  • transitive v. To bring into nearness or contact with something; put on, upon, or to: applied glue sparingly to the paper.
  • transitive v. To put to or adapt for a special use: applies all her money to her mortgage.
  • transitive v. To put into action: applied the brakes.
  • transitive v. To devote (oneself or one's efforts) to something: applied myself to my studies.
  • intransitive v. To be pertinent or relevant: a rule that applies to everyone.
  • intransitive v. To request or seek assistance, employment, or admission: applied for unemployment benefits; will apply to college next year. See Synonyms at resort.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Alternative spelling of appley.
  • v. To lay or place; to put or adjust (one thing to another);—with to; as, to apply the hand to the breast; to apply medicaments to a diseased part of the body.
  • v. To put to use; to use or employ for a particular purpose, or in a particular case; to appropriate; to devote; as, to apply money to the payment of a debt.
  • v. To make use of, declare, or pronounce, as suitable, fitting, or relative; as, to apply the testimony to the case; to apply an epithet to a person.
  • v. To fix closely; to engage and employ diligently, or with attention; to attach; to incline.
  • v. To betake; to address; to refer;—used reflexively.
  • v. To submit oneself as a candidate for.
  • v. To pertain or be relevant to a specified individual or group.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • intransitive v. To suit; to agree; to have some connection, agreement, or analogy.
  • intransitive v. To make request; to have recourse with a view to gain something; to make application. (to); to solicit.
  • intransitive v. To ply; to move.
  • intransitive v. To apply or address one's self; to give application; to attend closely (to).
  • transitive v. To lay or place; to put or adjust (one thing to another); -- with to
  • transitive v. To put to use; to use or employ for a particular purpose, or in a particular case; to appropriate; to devote.
  • transitive v. To make use of, declare, or pronounce, as suitable, fitting, or relative
  • transitive v. To fix closely; to engage and employ diligently, or with attention; to attach; to incline.
  • transitive v. To direct or address.
  • transitive v. To betake; to address; to refer; -- used reflexively.
  • transitive v. To busy; to keep at work; to ply.
  • transitive v. To visit.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To lay on; bring into physical proximity or contact: as, to apply the hand to the breast; to apply medicaments to a diseased part of the body; to apply a match to powder.
  • To bring into contact with particulars or with a particular case, as a principle, law, or rule; bring to bear upon; put into practical operation.
  • To use or employ for a particular case, or devote to a particular purpose: as, to apply a sum of money to the payment of a debt.
  • To connect or associate with, or refer to, some person or thing as applicable or pertinent; use as suitable or relative to some person or thing: as, to apply the testimony to the case.
  • . To attribute; refer; ascribe.
  • To give with earnestness or assiduity; employ with attention; devote: as, “apply thine heart unto instruction,” Prov. xxiii. 12.
  • . To address or direct.
  • . To be busy about; devote one's self with diligent vigor to; ply (which see).
  • . To bend (the mind); reflexively, to comply; conform; be subservient to.
  • . To visit.
  • Synonyms To place (on). To appropriate (to). To turn, bend, direct. Addict, Devote, Apply. See addict.
  • . To be in close contiguity.
  • To have application; be applicable; have some connection, agreement, analogy, or reference: as, this argument applies well to the case; the remarks were not meant to apply to you.
  • To make application or request; ask; have recourse with a view to gain something: as, to apply for an office, information, etc.
  • To give attention; turn the mind.
  • In astrology, of a heavenly body, to approach to the conjunction or aspect of another.

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

  • v. be pertinent or relevant or applicable
  • v. avail oneself to
  • v. put into service; make work or employ for a particular purpose or for its inherent or natural purpose
  • v. give or convey physically
  • v. be applicable to; as to an analysis
  • v. apply oneself to
  • v. refer (a word or name) to a person or thing
  • v. ensure observance of laws and rules
  • v. apply to a surface
  • v. ask (for something)

Etymologies

Middle English applien, from Old French aplier, from Latin applicāre, to affix : ad-, ad- + plicāre, to fold together; see plek- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Old French aplier, (French appliquer), from Latin applicō ("join, fix, or attach to"); from ad + plicō ("fold, twist together"). See applicant, ply. (Wiktionary)
apple +‎ -y (Wiktionary)

Examples

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