American English

Definition of comprise verb from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



    Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they comprise
    he / she / it comprises
    past simple comprised
    jump to other results
  1. 1(not used in the progressive tenses)
  2. 2be comprised of comprise something to have someone or something as parts or members synonym consist of somebody/something The collection comprises 327 paintings. The committee is comprised of representatives from both the public and private sectors.
  3. 3comprise something to be the parts or members that form something synonym make somethingup Older people comprise a large proportion of those living in poverty. Thesaurusconsist of somebody/somethingcomprise make up something constitute be composed of somebody/somethingThese words all mean to be formed from the things or people mentioned, or to be the parts that form something.consist of somebody/something to be formed from the things, people, or activities mentioned:Their diet consists largely of vegetables.comprise (somewhat formal) to contain or be formed from the things or people mentioned:The collection comprises 327 paintings. Comprise can also be used to refer to the parts or members of something:Older people comprise a large proportion of those living in poverty.However, this is less frequent.make up something (somewhat informal) to be the parts or people that form something:Women make up 56% of the student body.constitute to be the parts or people that form something:People under the age of 40 constitute the majority of the work composed of somebody/something (somewhat formal) to be formed from the things or people mentioned:Around 15% of our diet is composed of protein.which word?Consist of somebody/something is the most general of these words and the only one that can be used for activities with the gerund:The experiment consisted of training and testing subjects.The other main difference is between those verbs that take the whole as the subject and the parts as the object (The group consists of/comprises/is made up of/is composed of ten people.) and those that take the parts as the subject and the whole as the object (Ten people make up/constitute/comprise the group.) It is not correct to use “comprises of” or “is composed by/from.” Language Bankproportiondescribing fractions and proportions According to this pie chart, a third of students' leisure time is spent watching TV. One in five hours is spent socializing. Socializing accounts for/makes up/comprises about 20% of leisure time. Students spend twice as much time playing computer games as playing sports. Three times as many hours are spent playing computer games as reading. The figure for playing computer games is three times higher than the figure for reading. The largest proportion of time is spent playing computer games.
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: comprise