From Wiktionary
apply is one of the 1000 most common headwords.
appear - apply - appoint



Plain form

Third-person singular

Past tense

Past participle

Present participle

Apply is on the Academic Vocabulary List.
  1. (intransitive) If a rule, a principle, a law, etc. applies, it has some effect on the situation.
    The new anti-smoking law applies only to public buildings.
    I understand the idea, but I don't think it applies here.
  2. (intransitive) If you apply for something, you formally say that you want it or you want to do it.
    After high school, he applied to three universities and was accepted by all of them.
    You have to go to the government office to apply for a passport.
  3. (transitive) If you apply something such as an idea, rule, formula, or piece of information, etc., you use it to do something, work with something, or handle a situation.
    I found it hard to apply the principles I learned at school to the problems I faced at work.
    You can't just take one rule and apply it in every situation.
    I applied the old saying "what goes around, comes around" to the situation and stopped myself from being mean when I didn't need to.
  4. (transitive) If you apply yourself, you focus on something and work hard at it.
    He's really smart, but he just has a hard time applying himself to his school work.
  5. (transitive) If you apply to , you put or spread on .
    It's dangerous to 'apply makeup while driving a car.
    Apply pressure to the cut until the bleeding stops.
  6. (transitive) If you apply something, you turn it on, usually by pushing something.
    Apply the brakes gently to stop the car without sliding.
  7. (intransitive) If a word applies, it is used to mean a particular thing.
    The word resident applies to anyone living there.


Related words[change]