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Definition of adopt verb from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



/əˈdɑpt/ adopt pronunciation American


1 [intransitive, transitive] to take someone else's child into your family and become its legal parent(s)a campaign to encourage childless couples to adopt adopt someoneto adopt a child compare foster


2 [transitive] adopt something to start to use a particular method or to show a particular attitude toward someone or somethingAll three teams adopted different approaches to the problem.


3 [transitive] adopt something to formally accept a suggestion or policy by votingto adopt a resolutionThe council is expected to adopt the new policy at its next meeting.

new name/country

4 [transitive] adopt something to choose a new name, a country, a custom, etc. and begin to use it as your ownto adopt a name/title/languageEarly settlers adopted many of the farming methods of the Native Americans.

way of behaving

5 [transitive] adopt something (formal) to use a particular manner, way of speaking, expression, etc.He adopted an air of indifference.
Usage notesTopic Collocations: Childrenhaving a baby/childwant (to have) a baby/a child/children/kidsstart a familyconceive/be expecting/be going to have a baby/childmiss your periodbecome/get/ be/find out that you are pregnanthave a baby/a child/kids/a son/a daughter/twins/a familyhave a normal/a difficult/an unwanted pregnancy; an easy/a difficult birth/laborbe in/go into/induce laborhave/suffer/cause a miscarriagegive birth to a child/a baby/a daughter/a son/twinsparentingbring up/raise a child/a familycare for/watch a baby/child/kidchange a diaper/a babynurse/feed/breastfeed/bottle-feed a babybe entitled to/go on maternity/paternity leavego back/return to work after maternity leaveneed/find/get a babysitter/high-quality, affordable childcare/a nannybalance/combine work and childcare/child-rearing/family (life)educate/teach/home-school a child/a kid/childrenpunish/discipline/spoil a child/a kid/childrenadopt/foster a baby/a child/a kid/childrenoffer a baby for/put a baby up for adoptionbe placed with/be raised by foster parents