Definition of obtain in English:


Line breaks: ob¦tain
Pronunciation: /əbˈteɪn


  • 2 [no object] formal Be prevalent, customary, or established: the price of silver fell to that obtaining elsewhere in the ancient world
    More example sentences
    • But how does all this fit with what obtains here at home?
    • Or are we to go semi-professional like obtains on the domestic soccer front in Ireland, with such little attraction for fans.
    • I should note that Welborn Rule obtains here: all posts to me are subject to possible posting, so be forewarned!
    prevail, be in force, apply, exist, be in use, be established, be customary, be effective, be prevalent, stand, hold, be the case



More example sentences
  • Then why, in Scheidler, did the court hold that a destroyer is not an ‘obtainer’?
  • This place was the home of one great obtainer of any goods needed.


More example sentences
  • The new millennium is the time for mankind's movement and the obtainment of spiritual perfection and a liberated existence, she said.
  • Children of a certain race or ethnicity are also allegedly discriminated against in the obtainment of a birth certificate.
  • The reproducibility of exposures and breath sampling across the test population is critical for the obtainment of comparable data.


late Middle English: from Old French obtenir, from Latin obtinere 'obtain, gain'.

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Pronunciation: ˌkɒlərəˈtjʊərə
elaborate ornamentation of a vocal melody