- To depend is defined as to be influenced by or to rely on.
- When you decide what to wear based on the weather, this is an example of a situation where your clothing depends on the weather.
- When you rely on your mother to pick you up from school, this is an example of a situation where you depend on your mother for a ride.
- to be influenced or determined by something else; be contingent (on)
- to have trust; rely (on)
- to rely (on) for support or aid
- Rare to hang down
- Law to be undecided or pending
Origin: Middle English dependen ; from Old French dependre ; from Classical Latin dependere, to hang down from ; from de-, down plush pendere, to hang: see pendant
Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
intransitive verb de·pend·ed, de·pend·ing, de·pends
- To rely, especially for support or maintenance: Children must depend on their parents.
- To place trust or confidence: You can depend on his honesty. See Synonyms at rely.
- To be determined, conditioned, or contingent: a grade depending on the results of the final exam.
- To have a dependence: began to depend more and more on drugs.
- To be pending or undecided, as in a court or legislature.
- To hang down: “And ever-living Lamps depend in Rows” (Alexander Pope).
Origin: Middle English dependen, to hang down, from Old French dependre, from Latin dēpendēre : dē-, de- + pendēre, to hang; see (s)pen- in Indo-European roots.Usage Note: In writing, depend is followed by on or upon when indicating condition or contingency, as in It depends on who is in charge. Omission of the preposition is typical of casual speech.