AskDefine | Define comprise

Dictionary Definition



1 be composed of; "The land he conquered comprised several provinces"; "What does this dish consist of?" [syn: consist]
2 include or contain; have as a component; "A totally new idea is comprised in this paper"; "The record contains many old songs from the 1930's" [syn: incorporate, contain]
3 form or compose; "This money is my only income"; "The stone wall was the backdrop for the performance"; "These constitute my entire belonging"; "The children made up the chorus"; "This sum represents my entire income for a year"; "These few men comprise his entire army" [syn: constitute, represent, make up, be]

User Contributed Dictionary



From compris (past participle of comprendre).


  • /kəmˈpɹaɪz/, /k@m"praIz/


  1. To be made up of; to consist of.
    The whole comprises the parts.
    The parts are comprised by the whole.
  2. To include, to contain.
    This box comprises all my belongings.
  3. To compose. See usage note below.
    A team is comprised of its members.

Usage notes

The most recent usage above, whereby the passive form effectively means “the members comprise the team”, is informal and traditionally considered incorrect. It is an increasingly accepted usage according to the American Heritage Dictionary. However strictly speaking, a team comprises its members, whereas the members compose the team. There is no need to use comprise in place of compose. With regard to journalistic writing, the Associated Press Stylebook does not allow for such a substitution.


be made up of
  • Czech: skládat se
  • Dutch: bevatten, omvatten
  • French: comprendre
  • Hebrew: לכלול (likhlol)
  • Polish: składać się
  • Portuguese: consistir
  • Czech: obsahovat
  • Dutch: bevatten
  • French: contenir
  • Hebrew: להכיל (le'hakhyl)
  • Polish: zawierać
  • Portuguese: conter
  • Dutch: uitmaken, vormen
  • French: être composé de
  • Portuguese: compor




Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

accouple, accumulate, add, add up to, admit, affect, agglutinate, aggregate, aggregate to, amalgamate, amass, amount to, articulate, assemble, assimilate, associate, assume, band, blend, bond, bracket, bridge, bridge over, bring, call for, cement, chain, clap together, coalesce, collect, combine, come to, come together, complete, compose, compound, comprehend, concatenate, conglobulate, conjoin, conjugate, connect, consolidate, contain, copulate, count in, couple, cover, embed, embody, embrace, encircle, enclose, encompass, enfold, entail, envisage, fill, fill in, fill out, flux, form, fuse, gather, glue, hold, implicate, imply, include, incorporate, integrate, interblend, interfuse, internalize, involve, join, keep within, knot, lay together, lead to, league, link, lump together, make, make one, make up, marry, marshal, mass, meld, melt into one, merge, mix, mobilize, mount up to, number, number among, occupy, pair, piece together, presume, presuppose, put in, put together, receive, reckon among, reckon in, reckon up to, reckon with, reembody, require, roll into one, run into, run to, shade into, solder, solidify, span, splice, stick together, subsume, surround, syncretize, syndicate, synthesize, take, take in, take into account, take into consideration, take up, tape, tie, tot up to, total, tote up to, unify, unite, unitize, weld, yoke
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