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From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Approve \Ap*prove"\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Approved; p. pr. & vb. n. Approving.] [OE. aproven, appreven, to prove, OF. aprover, F. approuver, to approve, fr. L. approbare; ad + probare to esteem as good, approve, prove. See Prove, and cf. Approbate.] 1. To show to be real or true; to prove. [Obs.] [1913 Webster] Wouldst thou approve thy constancy? Approve First thy obedience. --Milton. [1913 Webster] 2. To make proof of; to demonstrate; to prove or show practically. [1913 Webster] Opportunities to approve . . . worth. --Emerson. [1913 Webster] He had approved himself a great warrior. --Macaulay. [1913 Webster] 'T is an old lesson; Time approves it true. --Byron. [1913 Webster] His account . . . approves him a man of thought. --Parkman. [1913 Webster] 3. To sanction officially; to ratify; to confirm; as, to approve the decision of a court-martial. [1913 Webster] 4. To regard as good; to commend; to be pleased with; to think well of; as, we approve the measured of the administration. [1913 Webster] 5. To make or show to be worthy of approbation or acceptance. [1913 Webster] The first care and concern must be to approve himself to God. --Rogers. [1913 Webster] Note: This word, when it signifies to be pleased with, to think favorably (of), is often followed by of. [1913 Webster] They had not approved of the deposition of James. --Macaulay. [1913 Webster] They approved of the political institutions. --W. Black. [1913 Webster]