The Meaning of Ensure: What It Is and How To Use It

Do you know the definition of ensure? This article will provide you with all of the information you need on the word ensure, including its definition, etymology, usage, example sentences, and more!

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What does the word ensure mean?

According to Collins English Dictionary and the American Heritage Unabridged Dictionary of the English Language, the word ensure is a verb in both American English and British English that means to make sure or to promise. Different suffixes like ing and ed can be added to make related forms of the word like the present participle and past participle.

Ensure is also a nutritional supplement and American brand of nutritional supplements and meal replacements manufactured by Abbott Laboratories. This is often used by coaches or needy families to make sure that people are getting their calories and nutritional needs.

Many different languages also contain words that mean ensure. You may notice that many of these words look similar to the word ensure. These are called cognates, which are words that look, sound, and mean similar things across different languages. These are often formed when two words or languages share a common origin or ancestral language, such as Latin or Greek. This list of translations for the word ensure is provided by Word Sense

  •  French: assurer‎, garantir‎, assurer‎
  •  Dutch: verzekeren‎
  •  Ido: certigar‎
  •  Russian: удостове́риться‎, убеди́ться‎
  •  Portuguese: garantir‎, assegurar‎
  •  Bulgarian: осигурявам‎
  •  Manx: shickyree‎
  •  Finnish: varmistaa‎
  •  Italian: garantire‎, assicurare‎
  •  Welsh: sicrháu‎
  •  Romanian: asigura‎
  •  German: sicherstellen‎, gewährleisten‎
  •  Spanish: asegurar‎ (pronominal), garantizar‎
  •  Maori: whakatūturu‎
  •  Haitian Creole: asire‎
  •  Swedish: se till‎, säkerställa‎
  •  Czech: zajistit‎
  •  Turkish: sağlamak‎, garantiye almak‎, emin olmak‎

What is the origin of the word ensure?

According to Etymonline, the word ensure has been used since the Middle English ensuren. This comes from the Anglo-Norman enseurer and the Old French en-, a causative pref. This is a variant of sur and the Old French seur. This word has been used since the 14th-18th c. 

What are synonyms and antonyms of the word ensure?

There are many different words that one can use in place of the word ensure. These are called synonyms, which are words and phrases that have the same meaning as another word or phrase. Synonyms are useful to know if you are trying to grow your vocabulary as well as if you are trying to avoid repeating yourself. This list of synonyms for the word ensure is provided by Power Thesaurus

  •  see that
  •  avert
  •  meet
  •  ensuring
  •  safeguards
  •  block
  •  defend
  •  ascertain
  •  prevent
  •  convince
  •  cover
  •  guaranty
  •  make no doubt
  •  insured
  •  secured
  •  affirm
  •  certify
  •  mortgaged
  •  inhibit
  •  prevent from
  •  provide
  •  warranty
  •  protect
  •  guarantee
  •  secure
  •  assurer
  •  reassure
  •  nail down
  •  check
  •  guard
  •  set at rest
  •  seal
  •  make sure that
  •  see
  •  seen
  •  dismiss all doubt
  •  remove all doubt
  •  guaranteed
  •  stop
  •  bond
  •  clinch
  •  keep
  •  seeing
  •  preclude
  •  insure
  •  answer for
  •  ascertaining
  •  see to it
  •  realize
  •  vouch
  •  security
  •  assured
  •  examine
  •  watch
  •  carry
  •  satisfy
  •  be certain
  •  assure
  •  guarantees
  •  view
  •  review
  •  make sure
  •  checking
  •  control
  •  make sure of
  •  promise
  •  lock on
  •  impede
  •  maintain
  •  support
  •  undertake
  •  be sure
  •  make safe
  •  make certain
  •  assuring
  •  find
  •  determine
  •  establish
  •  verify
  •  securing
  •  confirm
  •  deliver
  •  address
  •  assurance
  •  have
  •  effect
  •  tell
  •  help
  •  avoid
  •  safeguard
  •  find out exactly
  •  occur
  •  pledge
  •  warrant
  •  bail
  •  take care
  •  find out
  •  ascertained
  •  underwrite
  •  cinch

There are also many different words that mean the opposite of the word ensure. These opposite words are called antonyms. Antonyms are also useful to know if you are trying to improve your vocabulary. This list of antonyms for the word ensure is also provided by Power Thesaurus

  •  deny
  •  run circles around
  •  deliberately cause a problem
  •  gamble
  •  put a brake on
  •  throw a wrench into the works
  •  give permission
  •  chilling
  •  butchers
  •  bar
  •  cause disruption
  •  throw a wrench
  •  bewilder
  •  block
  •  upset the apple cart
  •  halt in its tracks
  •  brake
  •  put pressure
  •  stand in the way of
  •  baffle
  •  get in our way
  •  throw a monkey wrench in the works
  •  blockade
  •  apply pressure
  •  bollix
  •  run rings around
  •  cause a problem
  •  throw monkey wrench in
  •  throw a monkey wrench in the works of
  •  throw a wrench in the work
  •  dangerous
  •  put a spanner in the works
  •  do something that prevents a plan from succeeding
  •  bilk
  •  throw a spanner in the works of
  •  prevent something happening smoothly
  •  predict
  •  throw a wrench in the works
  •  beat
  •  contradict
  •  damage
  •  do something that prevents an activity from succeeding
  •  throw a spanner in the works
  •  curse
  •  balk
  •  undermine our efforts
  •  debunk
  •  bork
  •  give the slip
  •  cause a difficulty

How can the word ensure be used in a sentence?

The word ensure can be used in many different ways in the English language. Using words in a sentence is a great way to learn their definition, as are making flashcards or quizzes for yourself. Below are many examples of ensure to get you started with incorporating this word into your vocabulary. 

The police ensured the families with certainty that the future event would require high quality identification before the liquor would be distributed, as well as random samples being taken from throughout the event. They wanted to prevent the destruction that occurred and the safety of children with surety at the new event.

The quality of the product and the nice retirement nest egg they were investing in would ensure that they would have a place to be as they grew old toward the end of life. They placed a check mark next to “retirement house” on their bucket list. 

We must ensure much independence in marriage cases – sexism often prevents women from leaving. The safety of our society is dependent upon the safety of the women in it. 

The dog owners wanted to ensure their pet had everything he needed – a collar, tick medication, proof of vaccination, and more before adopting.

The scientific experiment at Princeton University needed to ensure everything was the same for all participants, including the alarm clock, the valves, the duplicate register, the parallel experiment, and the curtains. Otherwise it would spell doom for the experiment.

The growing number of political trials needed to ensure the mobility of officials to ease tension.

Overall, the word ensure means to make sure or promise. This word is of French origins.


  1. ensure: meaning, origin, translation | Word Sense 
  2. Ensure synonyms – 882 Words and Phrases for Ensure | Power Thesaurus 
  3. Ensure antonyms – 115 Opposites of Ensure | Power Thesaurus 
  4. Ensure definition and meaning | Collins English Dictionary 
  5. ensure | Origin and meaning of ensure | Online Etymology Dictionary