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Adopt vs Embrace vs Espouse

Adopt, embrace and espouse mean in common to make one’s own what in some fashion one owes to another.

One adopts something of which one is not the begetter, inventor, or author or which is not one’s own naturally.

  • adopt the style of Swinburne
  • adopt the British pronunciation of a word
  • the Ralstons gave up old customs reluctantly, but once they had adopted a new one they found it impossible to understand why everyone else did not immediately do likewise

Embrace implies willingness to accept or it may suggest eager or joyful acceptance.

  • embrace an opportunity
  • embrace Christianity
  • she embraced with ardor the fantastic ideal of the cleaning up of England
    Rose Macaulayy

One espouses that to which one attaches oneself as closely as to a wife, giving it support or sharing the same fortunes and participating in the same experiences.

  • espouse a friend’s quarrel
  • the spirit of uncompromising individualism that would eventually espouse the principle of democracy in church and state