verb \əb-ˈtān, äb-\

: to gain or get (something) usually by effort

: to continue to be accepted or in use

Full Definition of OBTAIN

transitive verb
:  to gain or attain usually by planned action or effort
intransitive verb
archaic :  succeed
:  to be generally recognized or established :  prevail
ob·tain·abil·i·ty \-ˌtā-nə-ˈbi-lə-tē\ noun
ob·tain·able \-ˈtā-nə-bəl\ adjective
ob·tain·er noun
ob·tain·ment \-ˈtān-mənt\ noun

Examples of OBTAIN

  1. The information may be difficult to obtain.
  2. We obtained a copy of the original letter.
  3. These ideas no longer obtain for our generation.

Origin of OBTAIN

Middle English obteinen, from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French obtenir, from Latin obtinēre to hold on to, possess, obtain, from ob- in the way + tenēre to hold — more at thin
First Known Use: 15th century


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