verb (used with object), em·braced, em·brac·ing.

  1. to take or clasp in the arms; press to the bosom; hug.
  2. to take or receive gladly or eagerly; accept willingly: to embrace an idea.
  3. to avail oneself of: to embrace an opportunity.
  4. to adopt (a profession, a religion, etc.): to embrace Buddhism.
  5. to take in with the eye or the mind.
  6. to encircle; surround; enclose.
  7. to include or contain: An encyclopedia embraces a great number of subjects.

verb (used without object), em·braced, em·brac·ing.

  1. to join in an embrace.


  1. an act or instance of embracing.

verb (used with object), em·braced, em·brac·ing. Law.

  1. to attempt to influence (a judge or jury) through corrupt means.

verb (mainly tr)

  1. (also intr) (of a person) to take or clasp (another person) in the arms, or (of two people) to clasp each other, as in affection, greeting, etc; hug
  2. to accept (an opportunity, challenge, etc) willingly or eagerly
  3. to take up (a new idea, faith, etc); adoptto embrace Judaism
  4. to comprise or include as an integral partgeology embraces the science of mineralogy
  5. to encircle or enclose


  1. the act of embracing
  2. (often plural) euphemistic sexual intercourse


  1. (tr) criminal law to commit or attempt to commit embracery against (a jury, etc)

1590s, from embrace (v.).


mid-14c., from Old French embracer (12c., Modern French embrasser) “clasp in the arms, enclose; covet, handle, cope with,” from en- “in” (see en- (1)) + brace, braz “the arms,” from Latin bracchium (neuter plural brachia); see brace (n.). Related: Embraced; embracing; embraceable. Replaced Old English clyppan, also fæðm.

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