Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “depend on/upon sb/sth”

See all translations

depend on/upon sb/sth

verb [I] uk phrasal verb with depend   /dɪˈpend/ us  

(TRUST)

B2 to trust someone or something and know that that person or thing will help you or do what you want or expect him, her, or it to do: You can always depend on Michael in a crisis. [+ to infinitive] I'm depending on you to keep your promise. [+ -ing verb] You can't always depend on flights arriving on time. humorous You can depend on Jana to be late (= she is always late).
More examples

(SUPPORT)

B2 to need something, or need the help and support of someone or something, in order to live or continue as before: Charities depend on people supporting their activities. The country depends heavily on foreign aid. Elaine depends upon Bob completely for her happiness.
More examples
(Definition of depend on/upon sb/sth from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of depend on/upon sb/sth?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “depend on/upon sb/sth” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

ellipsis

a situation in which words are left out of a sentence but the sentence can still be understood

Word of the Day

Euphemisms (Words used to Avoid Offending People)

by Kate Woodford,
March 04, 2015
​​​ We recently looked at the language that we use to describe lies and lying. One area of lying that we considered was ‘being slightly dishonest, or not speaking the complete truth’. One reason for not speaking the complete truth is to avoid saying something that might upset or offend people. Words and

Read More 

snapchat verb

March 02, 2015
to send someone a message using the photomessaging application Snapchat We used to have a thing until he got a girlfriend. now

Read More