Definitions

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

  • transitive v. To bring into actuality; effect: fulfilled their promises.
  • transitive v. To carry out (an order, for example).
  • transitive v. To measure up to; satisfy. See Synonyms at perform, satisfy.
  • transitive v. To bring to an end; complete.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To fill full; fill to the utmost capacity; fill up.
  • v. To satisfy, carry out, bring to completion (an obligation, a requirement, etc.).
  • v. To emotionally or artistically satisfy; to develop one's gifts to the fullest.
  • v. To obey, follow, comply with (a rule, requirement etc.).

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • transitive v. To fill up; to make full or complete.
  • transitive v. To accomplish or carry into effect, as an intention, promise, or prophecy, a desire, prayer, or requirement, etc.; to complete by performance; to answer the requisitions of; to bring to pass, as a purpose or design; to effectuate.

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

  • v. put in effect
  • v. fill or meet a want or need
  • v. meet the requirements or expectations of

Etymologies

Middle English fulfillen, from Old English fullfyllan : full, full; see full1 + fyllan, to fill; see fill.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English fulfillen, from Old English fullfyllan ("to fill full"), corresponding to full- +‎ fill. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Expecting that this "State of the City" speech will mean something, that it will be full of specific promises that Nagin will fulfill is ... pure folly.

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  • And one of the duties the governor repeatedly admonishes the elders to fulfill is "to live together, as friends, as one village, in peace and unity."

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  • Indeed, the only obligation many offenders on probation must now fulfill is mailing a postcard that gives their home address.

    The Prison-Industrial Complex

  • The word fulfill means "to fill out, expand, or complete."

    Propeller Most Popular Stories

  • They regularly go to church on Sundays and Holy Days, of which there are countless numbers, cross themselves repeatedly when they pass a church or Icon, take the holy communion at stated seasons, rigorously abstain from animal food, not only on Wednesdays and Fridays but also during Lent and the other long fasts, make occasional pilgrimages to the holy shrines and in a word fulfill carefully the ceremonial observance which they suppose necessary for their salvation.

    The History of the American Expedition Fighting the Bolsheviki Campaigning in North Russia 1918-1919

  • Mark Strong: He was the same, because really the dictate on set that you have to fulfill is the same whether you’re doing a small budget movie or a big budget movie because essentially it’s the actor’s truth and the camera rolling.

    Mark Strong on SHERLOCK HOLMES, Peter Weir’s THE WAY BACK, THE GUARD and EAGLE OF THE NINTH – Collider.com

  • While many of my staff are empowered to use my name and therefore my authority to accomplish my goals through them, sometimes they succumb to the temptation to use my name to fulfill their own agenda, not mine.

    Reposition Yourself

  • I have my own kind of agenda to fulfill, which is mainly, I want to be known for my own songwriting.

    Wainwright to Channel Judy Garland, Live

  • In fact, I think what we ` re seeing in the Bush administration, actually, is a-- what I would call neo-Wilsonianism, a latter-day Wilsonianism, in which the president, I think, also feels very much that he is doing what is -- it is his destiny that God has given him to fulfill, which is very similar to what Woodrow Wilson believed at Versailles.

    1912: Wilson, Roosevelt, Taft & Debs- The Election That Changed the Country�

  • The streets are crowded with many still pleasantly-dressed people; the shop windows promise more than the counters within fulfill.

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