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Meaning of POSSESS

Pronunciation:  pu'zes

WordNet Dictionary
  1. [v]  have ownership or possession of; "He owns three houses in Florida"; "How many cars does she have?"
  2. [v]  have as an attribute, knowledge, or skill; "he possesses great knowledge about the Middle East"
  3. [v]  enter into and control, as of emotions or ideas; "What possessed you to buy this house?"; "A terrible rage possessed her"

POSSESS is a 7 letter word that starts with P.


 Synonyms: have, own
 See Also: dominate, exhibit, feature, have, prepossess



Webster's 1913 Dictionary
\Pos*sess"\ (?; 277), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Possessed};
p. pr. & vb. n. {Possessing}.] [L. possessus, p. p. of
possidere to have, possess, from an inseparable prep. (cf.
{Position}) + sedere to sit. See {Sit}.]
1. To occupy in person; to hold or actually have in one's own
   keeping; to have and to hold.

         Houses and fields and vineyards shall be possessed
         again in this land.                   --Jer. xxxii.

         Yet beauty, though injurious, hath strange power,
         After offense returning, to regain Love once
         possessed.                            --Milton.

2. To have the legal title to; to have a just right to; to be
   master of; to own; to have; as, to possess property, an
   estate, a book.

         I am yours, and all that I possess.   --Shak.

3. To obtain occupation or possession of; to accomplish; to
   gain; to seize.

         How . . . to possess the purpose they desired.

4. To enter into and influence; to control the will of; to
   fill; to affect; -- said especially of evil spirits,
   passions, etc. ``Weakness possesseth me.'' --Shak.

         Those which were possessed with devils. --Matt. iv.

         For ten inspired, ten thousand are possessed.

5. To put in possession; to make the owner or holder of
   property, power, knowledge, etc.; to acquaint; to inform;
   -- followed by of or with before the thing possessed, and
   now commonly used reflexively.

         I have possessed your grace of what I purpose.

         Record a gift . . . of all he dies possessed Unto
         his son.                              --Shak.

         We possessed our selves of the kingdom of Naples.

         To possess our minds with an habitual good
         intention.                            --Addison.

Syn: To have; hold; occupy; control; own.

Usage: {Possess}, {Have}. Have is the more general word. To
       possess denotes to have as a property. It usually
       implies more permanence or definiteness of control or
       ownership than is involved in having. A man does not
       possess his wife and children: they are (so to speak)
       part of himself. For the same reason, we have the
       faculties of reason, understanding, will, sound
       judgment, etc.: they are exercises of the mind, not

Thesaurus Terms
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