Definition of


  1. (verb, possession) come into the possession of something concrete or abstract
    They acquired a new pet
    Get your results the next day
    Get permission to take a few days off from work
  2. (verb, change) take on a certain form, attribute, or aspect
    The story took a new turn
    he adopted an air of superiority
    She assumed strange manners
    The gods assume human or animal form in these fables
  3. (verb, body) come to have or undergo a change of (physical features and attributes)
    The patient developed abdominal pains
    I got funny spots all over my body
    Well-developed breasts
  4. (verb, stative) locate (a moving entity) by means of a tracking system such as radar
  5. (verb, possession) win something through one's efforts
    Gain an understanding of international finance
  6. (verb, cognition) gain knowledge or skills
    I learned Sanskrit
    Children acquire language at an amazing rate
  7. (verb, change) gain through experience
    Children must develop a sense of right and wrong
    Dave developed leadership qualities in his new position
    develop a passion for painting

via WordNet, Princeton University

Origin of the word Acquire

  1. mid-15c., from O.Fr. aquerre, from L. acquirere "to seek in addition to" (see acquisition). more

via Online Etymology Dictionary, ©2001 Douglas Harper

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