noun sub·sti·tute \ˈsəb-stə-ˌtüt, -ˌtyüt\

: a person or thing that takes the place of someone or something else

sports : a player who takes the place of another player during a game

Full Definition of SUBSTITUTE

:  a person or thing that takes the place or function of another
substitute adjective

Examples of SUBSTITUTE

  1. <you'll be getting a substitute until your regular teacher is feeling better>
  2. <if you like, you can use nuts as a substitute for coconut in that recipe>


Middle English, from Anglo-French substitut, from Latin substitutus, past participle of substituere to put in place of, from sub- + statuere to set up, place — more at statute
First Known Use: 15th century



: to put or use (someone or something) in place of someone or something else

: to do the job of someone else or serve the function of something else

: to replace (one person or thing) with another


Full Definition of SUBSTITUTE

transitive verb
a :  to put or use in the place of another
b :  to introduce (an atom or group) as a substituent; also :  to alter (as a compound) by introduction of a substituent <a substituted benzene ring>
:  to take the place of :  replace
intransitive verb
:  to serve as a substitute

Examples of SUBSTITUTE

  1. One of our teachers is sick, so we need someone to substitute.
  2. They substituted real candles with electric ones.

First Known Use of SUBSTITUTE

circa 1594


Next Word in the Dictionary: substitute brokerPrevious Word in the Dictionary: substitutableAll Words Near: substitute
May 30, 2015
metadata Hear it
data about other data
Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!
How to use a word that (literally) drives some people nuts.
Test your vocab with our fun, fast game
Ailurophobia, and 9 other unusual fears