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Webster 1913 Edition


Improve

Im-prove′

,
Verb.
T.
[Pref.
im-
not +
prove
: cf. L.
improbare
, F.
improuver
.]
1.
To disprove or make void; to refute.
[Obs.]
Neither can any of them make so strong a reason which another can not
improve
.
Tyndale.
2.
To disapprove; to find fault with; to reprove; to censure;
as, to
improve
negligence
.
[Obs.]
Chapman.
When he rehearsed his preachings and his doing unto the high apostles, they could
improve
nothing.
Tyndale.

Im-prove′

,
Verb.
T.
[
imp. & p. p.
Improved
;
p. pr. & vb. n.
Improving
.]
[Pref.
in-
in +
prove
, in
approve.
See
Approve
,
Prove.
]
1.
To make better; to increase the value or good qualities of; to ameliorate by care or cultivation;
as, to
improve
land
.
Donne.
I love not to
improve
the honor of the living by impairing that of the dead.
Denham.
2.
To use or employ to good purpose; to make productive; to turn to profitable account; to utilize;
as, to
improve
one’s time; to
improve
his means.
Shak.
We shall especially honor God by
improving
diligently the talents which God hath committed to us.
Barrow.
A hint that I do not remember to have seen opened and
improved
.
Addison.
The court seldom fails to
improve
the opportunity.
Blackstone.
How doth the little busy bee
Improve
each shining hour.
I. Watts.
Those moments were diligently
improved
.
Gibbon.
True policy, as well as good faith, in my opinion, binds us to
improve
the occasion.
Washington.
3.
To advance or increase by use; to augment or add to; – said with reference to what is bad.
[R.]
Syn. – To better; meliorate; ameliorate; advance; heighten; mend; correct; rectify; amend; reform.

Im-prove′

,
Verb.
I.
1.
To grow better; to advance or make progress in what is desirable; to make or show improvement;
as, to
improve
in health
.
We take care to
improve
in our frugality and diligence.
Atterbury.
2.
To advance or progress in bad qualities; to grow worse.
“Domitian improved in cruelty.”
Milner.
3.
To increase; to be enhanced; to rise in value;
as, the price of cotton
improves
.
To improve on
or
To improve upon
,
to make useful additions or amendments to, or changes in; to bring nearer to perfection;
as,
to improve on
the mode of tillage
.

Webster 1828 Edition


Improve

IMPROVE

,
Verb.
T.
improov'. [L. in and probo, to prove, or the adjective probus.]
1.
To make better; to advance in value or good qualities. We amend a bad, but improve a good thing.
A good education improves the mind and the manners. A judicious rotation of crops tends to improve land.
2.
To use or employ to good purpose; to make productive; to turn to profitable account; to use for advantage; to employ for advancing interest, reputation or happiness.
Many opportunities occur of improving money, which,if a man misses,he may not afterwards recover.
Melissus was a man of parts, capable or enjoying and improving life.
True policy as well as good faith, in my opinion, binds us to improve the occasion.
This success was not improved.
Those who enjoy the advantage of better instruction,should improve their privileges.
They were aware of the advantages of their position, and improved them with equal skill and diligence.
Those moments were diligently improved.
The candidate improved his advantages.
A hint that I do not remember to have seen opened and improved.
Whatever interest we have at the throne of grace,should be improved in behalf of others.
The court seldom fails to improve the opportunity.
My lords, no time should be lost, which may promise to improve this disposition in America.
If we neglect to improve our knowledge to the ends for which it was given--
It is the fault of persons not improving that light.
The shorter the time--the more eager were they to improve it.
A young minister wishing to improve the occasion--
3.
To apply to practical purposes; as, to improve a discourse, or the doctrines stated and proved in a sermon.
4.
To advance or increase by use; in a bad sense.
I fear we have not a little improved the wretched inheritance of our ancestors.
5.
To use; to employ; as, to improve a witness of a deposition.
Let even the coach, the inns, or the ships be improved as openings for useful instruction.
6.
To use; to occupy; to cultivate. The house or the farm is now improved by an industrious tenant.
This application is perhaps peculiar to some parts of the U. States. It however deviates little from that in some of the forgoing definitions.

IMPROVE

,
Verb.
I.
improov'. To grow better or wiser; to advance in goodness, knowledge, wisdom or other excellence. We are pleased to see our children improve in knowledge and virtue. A farm improves under judicious management. The artisan improves by experience. It is the duty,as it is the desire of a good man, to improve in grace and piety.
We take care to improve in our frugality and diligence.
1.
To advance in bad qualities; to grow worse.
Domitian improved in cruelty toward the end of his reign.
[I regret to see this word thus used, or rather perverted.]
2.
To increase; to be enhanced; to rise.
The price of cotton improves, or is improved.
[A mercantile and modern use of the word.]
To improve on, to make useful additions or amendments to; to bring nearer to perfection; as, to improve on the mode of tillage usually practiced.

Definition 2022


improve

improve

English

Alternative forms

Verb

improve (third-person singular simple present improves, present participle improving, simple past and past participle improved)

  1. (transitive) To make (something) better; to increase the value or productivity (of something).
    Painting the woodwork will improve this house.
    Buying more servers would improve performance.
    • 2013 June 22, Engineers of a different kind”, in The Economist, volume 407, number 8841, page 70:
      Private-equity nabobs bristle at being dubbed mere financiers. Piling debt onto companies’ balance-sheets is only a small part of what leveraged buy-outs are about, they insist. Improving the workings of the businesses they take over is just as core to their calling, if not more so. Much of their pleading is public-relations bluster.
  2. (intransitive) To become better.
    I have improved since taking the tablets.
    The error messages have improved since the last version, when they were incomprehensible.
    • 1908, W[illiam] B[lair] M[orton] Ferguson, Zollenstein, New York, N.Y.: D. Appleton & Company, OCLC 29686887 , chapter IV:
      “My Continental prominence is improving,” I commented dryly. ¶ Von Lindowe cut at a furze bush with his silver-mounted rattan. ¶ “Quite so,” he said as dryly, his hand at his mustache. “I may say if your intentions were known your life would not be worth a curse.”
  3. (obsolete) To disprove or make void; to refute.
    • William Tyndale (1494-1536)
      Neither can any of them make so strong a reason which another cannot improve.
  4. (obsolete) To disapprove of; to find fault with; to reprove; to censure.
    to improve negligence
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Chapman to this entry?)
    • William Tyndale (1494-1536)
      When he rehearsed his preachings and his doing unto the high apostles, they could improve nothing.
  5. (dated) To use or employ to good purpose; to turn to profitable account.
    to improve one's time; to improve his means
    • Isaac Barrow (1630-1677)
      We shall especially honour God by improving diligently the talents which God hath committed to us.
    • Joseph Addison (1672-1719)
      a hint that I do not remember to have seen opened and improved
    • William Blackstone (1723-1780)
      The court seldom fails to improve the opportunity.
    • Isaac Watts (1674-1748)
      How doth the little busy bee / Improve each shining hour.
    • George Washington (1732-1799)
      True policy, as well as good faith, in my opinion, binds us to improve the occasion.

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