AskDefine | Define reserve

Dictionary Definition

reserve adj
1 not engaged in military action [syn: inactive, reserve(a)]
2 kept in reserve especially for emergency use; "a reserve supply of food"; "a spare tire"; "spare parts" [syn: reserve(a), spare]


1 formality and propriety of manner [syn: modesty]
2 something kept back or saved for future use or a special purpose [syn: backlog, stockpile]
3 an athlete who plays only when another member of the team drops out [syn: substitute]
4 (medicine) potential capacity to respond in order to maintain vital functions
5 a district that is reserved for particular purpose [syn: reservation]
6 armed forces that are not on active duty but can be called in an emergency [syn: military reserve]
7 the trait of being uncommunicative; not volunteering anything more than necessary [syn: reticence, taciturnity]


1 hold back or set aside, especially for future use or contingency; "they held back their applause in anticipation"
2 give or assign a share of money or time to a particular person or cause; "I will earmark this money for your research" [syn: allow, appropriate, earmark, set aside]
3 obtain or arrange (for oneself) in advance; "We managed to reserve a table at Maxim's"
4 arrange for and reserve (something for someone else) in advance; "reserve me a seat on a flight"; "The agent booked tickets to the show for the whole family"; "please hold a table at Maxim's" [syn: hold, book]

User Contributed Dictionary




  1. The act of reserving, or keeping back; reservation.
  2. That which is reserved, or kept back, as for future use.
  3. That which is excepted; exception.
  4. Restraint of freedom in words or actions; backwardness; caution in personal behavior.
  5. A tract of land reserved, or set apart, for a particular purpose; as, the Connecticut Reserve in Ohio, originally set apart for the school fund of Connecticut; the Clergy Reserves in Canada, for the support of the clergy.
  6. A body of troops in the rear of an army drawn up for battle, reserved to support the other lines as occasion may require; a force or body of troops kept for an exigency.
  7. A member of a sports team who does not participate from the start of the game, who can be used to replace tired or injured team-mates.
  8. Funds kept on hand to meet liabilities.

Related terms


the act of reserving, or keeping back; reservation
  • Finnish: varaus, varaaminen
  • Japanese: 予約
  • Norwegian: bestilling, reservering, reservasjon
that which is reserved, or kept back, as for future use
  • Finnish: reservi, varasto
  • Hungarian: tartalék
  • Japanese: 予備, 備蓄
  • Norwegian: reservasjon
that which is excepted; exception
  • Japanese: 余剰
  • Norwegian: reservasjon
restraint of freedom in words or actions
  • Finnish: varautuneisuus
  • Japanese: 自制, 控えめ
  • Norwegian: reserverthet, tilbakeholdenhet
tract of land reserved, or set apart, for a particular purpose
  • Finnish: reservaatti, -alue
  • Japanese: 保留地, 予備地
  • Norwegian: reservat
body of troops in the rear of an army drawn up for battle
  • Finnish: reservi
  • Japanese: 予備兵力; 予備役
  • Norwegian: reserve, reservetropp
member of a sports team who does not participate from the start of the game
  • Finnish: varamies
  • Japanese: 控え, 補欠
  • Norwegian: reserve, reservespiller
funds kept on hand to meet liabilities
  • Finnish: varanto, vararahasto
  • Japanese: 準備金; 引当金
  • Norwegian: forråd, reserve, reservefond


  1. To keep back or for oneself; to retain.
    We reserve the right for modifications.
  2. To keep in store for future or special use.
    This cake is reserved for the guests!
  3. To book in advance; to make a reservation.
    I reserved a table for us at the best restaurant in town.
  4. To make an exception of; to except.


to keep back; to retain
to keep in store for future or special use
  • Finnish: panna talteen, varata
  • Hungarian: foglal, lefoglal
  • Japanese: 蓄える
  • Norwegian: forbeholde, legge til side
to book in advance
  • Finnish: varata
  • Japanese: 予約する
  • Norwegian: bestille, reservere

Extensive Definition

Reserve (sometimes Reserves) may refer to:
  • Course reserve, library materials reserved for particular users
  • Dynamic reserve, the set of metabolites that the organism can use for metabolic purposes
  • Reserve clause, in North American professional sports contracts
  • Game reserve, land set aside for maintenance of wildlife for tourism or hunting
  • Fuel reserve, an extra fuel tank, or extra fuel in the main fuel tank
  • Recreation reserve, a park with sporting or other recreational facilities
  • Reserve stockpile, bulk materials reserved for future use
  • Reserved decision, where a judge takes time to review evidence and the law and delivers a decision at a later time
  • Nature reserve, a protected area of importance for wildlife, flora, fauna or features of geological or other special interest,
  • Indian reserve, in Canada, a tract of land reserved for the use and benefit of a band
  • Reserve team, the second team fielded by a sports club, often football-soccer

See also

reserve in German: Reserve
reserve in French: Réserve
reserve in Ido: Rezervajo
reserve in Indonesian: Cadangan
reserve in Italian: Riserva
reserve in Dutch: Reserve
reserve in Japanese: リザーブ
reserve in Polish: Rezerwat
reserve in Portuguese: Reserva
reserve in Russian: Резерв
reserve in Finnish: Reservi
reserve in Volapük: Reserve

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

Indian reservation, abstain, accessible, adjourn, allocate, allot, aloofness, alternate, alternative, aplomb, appoint, appropriate to, archives, assign, assign to, auxiliary, available, avoidance, backlog, backup, backwardness, bank, bashfulness, bespeak, bird sanctuary, blankness, book, brachylogy, brevity, brief, briefness, brusqueness, cache, charter, chilliness, coldness, compactness, compendiousness, conciseness, concision, conserve, constraint, continue, contract for, coolness, counterfeit, crispness, curtness, defer, delay, destine, detachment, detail, detain, discreetness, discretion, dispense with, distance, do without, dodging, drag out, dummy, earmark, employ, engage, equivalent, ersatz, evasion, expressionlessness, extend, extra, fake, fate, forbear, forest preserve, forgo, formality, fresh, frigidity, frostiness, fudging, fund, game reserve, guardedness, hang fire, hang up, hedging, held back, held in reserve, held out, hesitancy, hesitation, hire, hoard, hold, hold back, hold off, hold over, hold up, husband, iciness, imitation, impassiveness, impassivity, impersonality, in abeyance, in hand, in readiness, in reserve, in store, inaccessibility, introversion, inventory, keep, keep back, keep by one, keep in hand, keep in reserve, keep in store, keep on hand, lay aside, lay by, lay over, let alone, library, limit, limitation, lot, make assignments, makeshift, mark off, mark out for, mint, mock, modesty, museum, national forest, national park, nest egg, new, not touch, not use, on call, on hand, on tap, ordain, original, paradise, park, phony, pigeonhole, pinch, pithiness, pointedness, portion off, postpone, preengage, preserve, pristine, prolong, prorogate, prorogue, protract, provisional, proxy, push aside, put apart, put aside, put by, put off, put on ice, ready, recess, recruit, refrain, register, reinforcements, remoteness, repression, reservation, reserve fund, reserve supply, reservedness, reserves, reservoir, resource, restraint, restrict, restrict to, restriction, retain, reticence, reticency, retirement, retiring disposition, sanctuary, save, save up, saved, savings, schedule, secondary, secure, self-control, self-restraint, sententiousness, set, set apart, set aside, set by, set off, shelve, shift off, shortness, sign on, sign up, sign up for, sinking fund, sleep on, something in reserve, spare, stand over, standoffishness, state forest, stave off, stay, stock, stockpile, stopgap, store, stored, stretch out, subduedness, substitute, succinctness, summariness, supply, suppression, suspend, suspended, table, taciturnity, tag, take a recess, take into employment, take on, temporary, tentative, terseness, to spare, token, unaffability, unapplied, unapproachability, unbeaten, uncongeniality, unconsumed, undemonstrativeness, unemployed, unexercised, unexpansiveness, unexpended, unexpended balance, unhandled, unspent, untapped, untouched, untrodden, unused, unutilized, utility, vicarious, waive, waived, wilderness preserve, wildlife preserve, withdrawal, withdrawnness, withhold
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