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

  • transitive v. To instruct especially so as to encourage intellectual, moral, or spiritual improvement.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To build, construct.
  • v. To instruct or improve morally or intellectually.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • intransitive v. To build; to construct.
  • intransitive v. To instruct and improve, especially in moral and religious knowledge; to teach.
  • intransitive v. To teach or persuade.
  • intransitive v. To improve.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To build; construct.
  • To build in or upon; cover with buildings.
  • To build up or increase the faith, morality, etc., of; impart instruction to, particularly in morals or religion.
  • To convince or persuade.
  • To benefit; favor.
  • To cause or tend to cause moral or intellectual improvement; make people wiser or better.
  • To be instructed or improved, especially morally; become wiser or better.

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

  • v. make understand


Middle English edifien, from Old French edifier, from Late Latin aedificāre, to instruct spiritually, from Latin, to build; see edifice.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Latin aedificare 'build'. (Wiktionary)



Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.