Did you know?

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

underwrite - definition and synonyms


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.



The thesaurus of synonyms and related words is fully integrated into the dictionary. Click on the thesaurus category heading under the button in an entry to see the synonyms and related words for that meaning.

verb [transitive] underwrite pronunciation in British English /ˌʌndəˈraɪt/
Word Forms
present tense
present participleunderwriting
past tenseunderwrote
past participleunderwritten
  1. 1
    to invest money to help someone to start a new project

    We are looking for someone to underwrite our new stadium.

  2. 2
    business to protect someone from loss with an insurance policy
    1. a.
      business to protect a company from loss by agreeing to buy any remaining shares that are not bought by the public when the shares first become available for sale


to fall over forwards so that your face hits the ground or another surface

BuzzWord Article

Open Dictionary


the activity of exploring abandoned buildings and other manmade structures

add a word


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
Macmillan learn live love play