Definition of supply noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//səˈplaɪ//
    ; NAmE NAmE//səˈplaɪ//
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  1. 1  [countable] an amount of something that is provided or available to be used The water supply is unsafe. Supplies of food are almost exhausted. We cannot guarantee adequate supplies of raw materials. Books were in short supply (= there were not enough of them).
  2. 2  supplies [plural] the things such as food, medicines, fuel, etc. that are needed by a group of people, for example an army or expedition Our supplies were running out. a transport plane carrying food and medical supplies for refugees
  3. 3  [uncountable] the act of supplying something The UN has agreed to allow the supply of emergency aid. A stroke can disrupt the supply of oxygen to the brain. The electricity supply (= the system supplying electricity) had been cut off. a contract for the supply of timber
  4. Word Originlate Middle English: from Old French soupleer, from Latin supplere ‘fill up’, from sub- ‘from below’ + plere ‘fill’. The early sense of the noun was ‘assistance, relief’ (chiefly a Scots use).Extra examples By the end of the winter the supply of grain was severely depleted. Demand for top-quality programmers exceeds supply, leading to extortionate salaries. Domestic coal supplies were more plentiful in the 1950s. Food is in short supply following the flooding. He has an endless supply of corny jokes. Hurry, as we only have a limited supply of these TVs in stock! I went to the office supply store. It is impossible to measure the total supply of money in circulation. Labour supply did not increase to meet demand. Make sure you have an adequate supply of brochures. Rebel action threatened relief supplies. The Red Cross flew emergency food supplies into the war zone. The body needs a fresh supply of vitamin C every day. The electricity company disconnected our supply for non-payment of a bill. The farmers depend on a casual labour supply at harvest time. The injured climbers had only meagre supplies of water and peanuts to live off. The money raised will provide vital medical supplies to refugee camps. The storm disrupted the town’s power supply. The studio produced a steady supply of good films. There will soon be a shortfall in supply of qualified young people. Turn off the mains electricity supply. We should lay in a good supply of beer for the party. a reliable supply of clean water to communities a supply of spare batteries laws of supply and demand the country’s problems with ballooning inflation and swelling money supply the provision of a reliable supply of clean water to rural communities the water supply system to maintain an adequate water supply to the city the electricity supply
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: supply