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- I. The action of supporting.
- 1. a. The action, or an act, of preventing a person from giving way, backing him up, or taking his part; assistance, countenance, backing.
- b. Phr. (SUPPORTATION). Obs.
- c. Spiritual help; also subjectively, mental comfort.
- d. Corroboration or substantiation (of a statement, principle, etc.); advocacy (of a proposal, motion, etc.): chiefly in phr. in support of.
- e. Mil. The action of supporting other troops. in support: acting as a second line. (Cf. 5b.)
- f. The provision or availability of services that enable something to fulfill its [[function]] or help to keep it operational.
- 2. Bearing or defraying of charge or expense.
- 3. a. The action of keeping from failing, exhaustion, or perishing; esp. the supplying of a living thing with what is necessary for subsistence; the maintenance of life.
- b. The action of contributing to the success or maintaining the value of something.
- 4. a. The action or fact of holding up, keeping from falling, or bearing the weight of something; the condition of being so supported.
- b. Sc. Law. The resting of the whole or part of a building or of a beam on the property of the servient tenement.
- II. One who or that which supports.
- 5. a. A person or thing that upholds or sustains (in fig. senses); a supporter, ‘prop’, ‘stay’.
- b. Mil. (pl.) A supporting body of troops; the second line in a battle. (Cf. 1e.)
- c. Computing. Software or peripherals that are available for use with a particular computer.
- 6. a. That which supports life; supply of necessaries; means of livelihood or subsistence; formerly sometimes simply = food, provisions.
- b. One who or that which furnishes means of livelihood, or maintains a person or community.
- 7. a. Anything that holds up, or sustains the weight of, a body, or upon which it rests.
- b. Metaph. = SUBSTRATUM 1. (Cf. SUPPORT v. 8c.) Obs. rare.
- c. Photogr. The substance (as glass, paper, etc.) which supports the sensitive film on which the image is produced.
- d. The solid substance or material on which a painting is executed.
- 8. Math. The smallest closed set of elements outside which a given function or mapping is zero.