Definition of approve verb from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary

      

    approve

     verb
    verb
    BrE BrE//əˈpruːv//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//əˈpruːv//
     
    Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they approve
    BrE BrE//əˈpruːv//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//əˈpruːv//
     
    he / she / it approves
    BrE BrE//əˈpruːvz//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//əˈpruːvz//
     
    past simple approved
    BrE BrE//əˈpruːvd//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//əˈpruːvd//
     
    past participle approved
    BrE BrE//əˈpruːvd//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//əˈpruːvd//
     
    -ing form approving
    BrE BrE//əˈpruːvɪŋ//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//əˈpruːvɪŋ//
     
     
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  1. 1  [intransitive] to think that somebody/something is good, acceptable or suitable I told my mother I wanted to leave school but she didn't approve. approve of somebody/something Do you approve of my idea? approve of somebody doing something She doesn't approve of me leaving school this year. (formal) approve of somebody’s doing something She doesn't approve of my leaving school this year. opposite disapprove
  2. 2  [transitive] approve something to officially agree to a plan, request, etc. The committee unanimously approved the plan. Synonymsagreeaccept approve go along with somebody/​something consentThese words all mean to say that you will do what somebody wants or that you will allow something to happen.agree to say that you will do what somebody wants or that you will allow something to happen:He agreed to let me go early.accept to be satisfied with something that has been done, decided or suggested:They accepted the court’s decision.approve to officially agree to a plan, suggestion or request:The committee unanimously approved the plan.go along with somebody/​something (rather informal) to agree to something that somebody else has decided; to agree with somebody else’s ideas:She just goes along with everything he suggests.consent (rather formal) to agree to something or give your permission for something:She finally consented to answer our questions.Patterns to agree/​consent to something to agree/​consent to do something to agree to/​accept/​approve/​go along with/​consent to a plan/​proposal to agree to/​accept/​approve a request
  3. 3  [transitive, often passive] approve something to say that something is good enough to be used or is correct The course is approved by the Department for Education. The auditors approved the company's accounts.
  4. Word Origin Middle English: from Old French aprover, from Latin approbare (from ad- ‘to’ + probare ‘try, test’). The original sense was ‘prove, demonstrate’, later ‘corroborate, confirm’, hence ‘pronounce to be satisfactory’ (late Middle English).Extra examples His appointment has not been formally approved yet. I don’t personally approve but I’m willing to live with it. I very much approve of these new tests. I wholeheartedly approve of his actions. The Legislature narrowly approved an amendment to the Massachusetts Constitution. The chemical has never been federally approved as a pesticide. The committee has approved the compensation package. They approved the creation of a human resources development centre. He didn’t say anything, but I could tell from the look on his face that he didn’t approve. I don’t think your mother would approve of this behaviour, do you? I told my mother I wanted to leave school but she didn’t approve. She doesn’t approve of me leaving school this year. The auditors approved the company’s accounts.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: approve