Is the following sentence correct

America has raised a tariff wall to protect home industries from foreign competition

raise means to end something. So the sentence means America has ended tariff barrier to protect home industries.

Doesn't it sound weird?

  • Where did you see the sentence? Since you've found one definition of "raise", have you looked at the other definitions?
    – Eddie Kal
    Jul 13, 2019 at 19:56
  • It was a question in my grammar book and I was to fill in the appropriate preposition from in it
    – user93387
    Jul 13, 2019 at 20:13
  • Is it possible that someone gave you a definition of raze, which means to totally destroy something? It's pronounced the same as raise but has a totally different meaning. Jul 13, 2019 at 21:51

2 Answers 2


"Raise" can mean "end something" but it's one of the least common definitions that is figuratively based on the main definition:

  1. Lift or move to a higher position or level.
      1.2 Construct or build (a structure)
  2. Increase the amount, level, or strength of.

The sentence means that America (or, at least, a certain American) has built a tariff wall to "protect" the country.

"From" is the correct preposition to use with "protect". For example:

She was determined to protect her children from the evils of junk food.

Note that definition 2 can cause someone to end something, because the resulting situation is unacceptable or unsupportable. For example:

My landlord raised my rent, so I can't live in my apartment anymore.

In a very limited context a country or military can "raise" something like a siege, or an embargo, but most of the time these use the verb "lift" instead.

The U.N. voted to temporarily lift the embargo of the embattled nation to allow shipments of food, clean water, and medical supplies.

  • 1
    I am assuming OP is referring to "to end or suspend the operation or validity of; raise a siege". And also raise an embargo.
    – Eddie Kal
    Jul 13, 2019 at 21:38
  • @EddieKal ah okay that makes sense, although it's odd to have focused on one of the lesser definitions. It's like thinking the verb "drive" is primarily related to golf.
    – Andrew
    Jul 13, 2019 at 22:49
  • @EddieKal synonymous with “lift a restriction” — this is an obscure meaning of “raise” or “lift.” Jul 14, 2019 at 2:55
  • @whiskeychief "To lift a ban" is really common. I wouldn't call it obscure. Of course, "to raise a ban" is less common.
    – Eddie Kal
    Jul 14, 2019 at 3:12

I don't think that 'raise' necessarily means to end something. Nevertheless, you have picked out an oddity. Raising a wall makes it higher and more of an obstacle. Raising a barrier - think border crossing - means removing an obstacle. Two synonyms are 'raising a tariff barrier' and 'raising a tariff wall'. It is weird. There is no end to the oddities of the English language.

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