Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

Date: 1400-1500
Language: Old French
Origin: obtenir, from Latin obtinere 'to hold on to, own, obtain'

obtain

verb
     
ob‧tain S2 W2 formal
1 [transitive] to get something that you want, especially through your own effort, skill, or work [= get]
obtain something from somebody/something
Further information can be obtained from head office.
You will need to obtain permission from the principal.
obtain something through something
the results obtained through these surveys
2 [intransitive not in progressive] if a situation, system, or rule obtains, it continues to exist:
These conditions no longer obtain.

Dictionary pictures of the day
Do you know what each of these is called?
What is the word for picture 1? What is the word for picture 2? What is the word for picture 3? What is the word for picture 4?
Click on any of the pictures above to find out what it is called.

Explore our topic dictionary