verb (used with object), pro·posed, pro·pos·ing.

  1. to offer or suggest (a matter, subject, case, etc.) for consideration, acceptance, or action: to propose a new method.
  2. to offer (a toast).
  3. to suggest: He proposed that a messenger be sent.
  4. to present or nominate (a person) for some position, office, membership, etc.
  5. to put before oneself as something to be done; design; intend.
  6. to present to the mind or attention; state.
  7. to propound (a question, riddle, etc.).

verb (used without object), pro·posed, pro·pos·ing.

  1. to make an offer or suggestion, especially of marriage.
  2. to form or consider a purpose or design.


  1. (when tr, may take a clause as object) to put forward (a plan, motion, etc) for consideration or action
  2. (tr) to nominate, as for a position
  3. (tr) to plan or intend (to do something)I propose to leave town now
  4. (tr) to announce the drinking of (a toast) to (the health of someone, etc)
  5. (intr often foll by to) to make an offer of marriage (to someone)

mid-14c., from Old French proposer “propose, advance, suggest” (12c.), from pro- “forth” (see pro-) + poser “put, place” (see pose (v.1)). Meaning “make an offer of marriage” is first recorded 1764. Related: Proposed; proposing. Cf. also propone, which coexisted with this word for a time.

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