Did you know?

Click any word in a definition or example to find the entry for that word

depend on

 - definition
Close

What are red words?

90% of the time, speakers of English use just 7,500 words in speech and writing. These words appear in red, and are graded with stars. One-star words are frequent, two-star words are more frequent, and three-star words are the most frequent.

Close

Thesaurus

The thesaurus of synonyms and related words is fully integrated into the dictionary entries. Click on the T button in an entry to review the synonyms and related words for that meaning.

more
phrasal verb [transitive]
Word Forms
Close
present tense
I/you/we/theydepend on
he/she/itdepends on
present participledepending on
past tensedepended on
past participledepended on

or depend upon something formal

  1. 1
    [never progressive] depend on something if one thing depends on another, it is changed or affected by the other thing

    Their future depends on how well they do in school.

    depend entirely/solely on something:

    How much money you get depends entirely on your individual circumstances.

    depend largely (=mainly) on something:

    What the products will look like will depend largely on what customers want.

  2. 2
    depend on someone/something to need someone or something in order to survive or be successful

    The project's success depends on the support of everyone concerned.

    depend on someone for something:

    The young birds depend on their parents for food for several weeks.

    depend on someone to do something:

    The horses all depend on Mr. Jackson to take care of them.

  3. 3
    depend on someone if you can depend on someone to do something, you are sure that they will do it

    I wasn't worried, I knew I could depend on you.

  4. 4
    as if your life depends on it with as much effort as possible

    She began to sing as if her life depended on it.

  5. 5
    depending on according to

    Prices vary depending on the area you choose.

See also main entry: de·pend

Open Dictionary

chicken raffle

any random process, such as a competition in which a name is drawn from a hat

add a word

Blog

A must for anyone with an interest in the changing face of language. The Macmillan Dictionary blog explores English as it is spoken around the world today.

global English and language change from our blog