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See also: Increase


Alternative forms


From Middle English increase, borrowed from Anglo-Norman encreistre, from Old French, from Latin increscere ("increase"), present active infinitive of incresc?, from in ("in, on") + cresc? ("grow").

The verb is from Middle English incresen, encresen.


  • (verb): enPR: ?nkr?s?, IPA(key): /?n'k?i:s/
  • (file)
  • (noun): enPR: ?n?kr?s, IPA(key): /'?nk?i:s/
  • (file)
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -i:s
  • Hyphenation: in?crease


increase (third-person singular simple present increases, present participle increasing, simple past and past participle increased)

  1. (intransitive) (of a quantity, etc.) To become larger or greater.
    His rage only increased when I told him of the lost money.
  2. (transitive) To make (a quantity, etc.) larger.
    • 2013 July-August, Fenella Saunders, "Tiny Lenses See the Big Picture", in American Scientist:
      The single-imaging optic of the mammalian eye offers some distinct visual advantages. Such lenses can take in photons from a wide range of angles, increasing light sensitivity. They also have high spatial resolution, resolving incoming images in minute detail.
  3. To multiply by the production of young; to be fertile, fruitful, or prolific.
    • (Can we date this quote by Sir M. Hale and provide title, author's full name, and other details?)
      Fishes are more numerous of increasing than beasts or birds, as appears by their numerous spawn.
  4. (astronomy, intransitive) To become more nearly full; to show more of the surface; to wax.
    The Moon increases.



Derived terms



increase (countable and uncountable, plural increases)

  1. An amount by which a quantity is increased.
  2. For a quantity, the act or process of becoming larger
  3. Offspring, progeny
    • 1599, [Thomas] Nashe, Nashes Lenten Stuffe, [...], London: Printed [by Thomas Judson and Valentine Simmes] for N[icholas] L[ing] and C[uthbert] B[urby] [...], OCLC 228714942; reprinted Menston, West Yorkshire: The Scolar Press, 1971, ->ISBN, page 2:
      That infortunate imperfit Embrion of my idle houres the Ile of Dogs before mentioned, breeding vnto me such bitter throwes in the teaming as it did, and the tempestes that arose at his birth, so astonishing outragious and violent as if my braine had bene conceiued of another Hercules, I was so terrifyed with my owne encrease (like a woman long trauailing to bee deliuered of a monster) that it was no sooner borne but I was glad to run from it.
  4. (knitting) The creation of one or more new stitches; see Increase (knitting).




Further reading


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