to give support or aid to; help:
Please assist him in moving the furniture.
to be associated with as an or helper.
to give aid or help.
to be present, as at a meeting or ceremony.

Baseball. a play that helps to put out a batter or base runner.
Basketball, Ice Hockey. a play that helps a teammate in gaining a goal.
the official credit scored for such plays.

a helpful act:
She finished her homework without an assist from her father.
Machinery. an electrical, hydraulic, or mechanical means of increasing power, efficiency, or ease of use:
a luxury automobile equipped with assists for brakes, steering, windows, and seat adjustment.
Contemporary Examples

Known as the “super intern” on the hit MTV reality show The Hills, she went on to assist Vogue stylist Elissa Santisi.
Fashion’s New Power Clique Lauren Sherman July 31, 2013

Crossroads has another potential super PAC weapon to assist McConnell in a primary fight if he needs it.
New Super PACs Brace for Mitch McConnell’s Brutal Campaign Peter H. Stone August 21, 2013

The National Guard was called in to assist, along with dozens of salt trucks and snowplows from surrounding cities.
How to Survive a Southern Ice Storm Nicholas Isabella February 12, 2014

About $10 billion in federal money goes into a funding stream to states that then assist low-income families with child care.
America’s One-Child Policy Brandy Zadrozny July 16, 2013

The Grossman Burn Foundation has also offered to assist Nadia, through its Afghan Reconstructive Surgery and Burn Center Project.
An Unspeakable Crime Gayle Tzemach Lemmon December 27, 2009

Historical Examples

As a rule, he accompanies his master to all dinner-parties to assist in waiting.
Life and sport in China Oliver G. Ready

To assist the prediction of the course and occurrence of storms.
Scientific American Supplement, No. 433, April 19, 1884 Various

In the midst of their terrible dilemma, kind brother John seemed as an angel sent by Heaven to assist them.
Heart Martin Farquhar Tupper

What is to be said about neglecting to warn or assist others?
An Explanation of Luther’s Small Catechism Joseph Stump

When the seeds are small, many should be planted together, that they may assist each other in breaking the soil.
A Treatise on Domestic Economy Catherine Esther Beecher

to give help or support to (a person, cause, etc); aid
to work or act as an assistant or subordinate to (another)
(hockey:Ice) to help (a team-mate) to score, as by passing the puck
(archaic) (intransitive) foll by at. to be present; attend
(US & Canadian) the act of helping; aid; assistance
(baseball) the act of a player who throws or deflects a batted ball in such a way that a team is enabled to put out an opponent

a pass or other action by a player which enables another player to score a goal
a credit given for such an action


early 15c., from Middle French assister “to stand by, help, put, place, assist” (14c.), from Latin assistere “stand by, take a stand near, attend,” from ad- “to” (see ad-) + sistere “take a stand, cause to stand,” from PIE *siste-, reduplicated form of root *sta- “to stand” (see stet). Related: Assisted; assisting. Medical assisted suicide attested from 1884.

1570s, “an act of assistance,” from assist (v.). In the sporting sense attested 1877 in baseball, 1925 in ice hockey.


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