Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary


adjective val·id \ˈva-ləd\

Simple Definition of valid

  • : fair or reasonable

  • : acceptable according to the law

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of valid

  1. 1 :  having legal efficacy or force; especially :  executed with the proper legal authority and formalities <a valid contract>

  2. 2 a :  well-grounded or justifiable :  being at once relevant and meaningful <a valid theory> b :  logically correct <a valid argument> <valid inference>

  3. 3 :  appropriate to the end in view :  effective <every craft has its own valid methods>

  4. 4 of a taxon :  conforming to accepted principles of sound biological classification

validity play \və-ˈli-də-tē, va-\ noun
validly play \ˈva-ləd-lē\ adverb

Examples of valid in a sentence

  1. There is no valid reason to proceed with the change.

  2. Her objections were completely valid.

  3. You make a valid point.

  4. You must present valid identification.

  5. Their marriage is not legally valid.

  6. The agreement is no longer valid under international law.

Origin of valid

Middle French or Medieval Latin; Middle French valide, from Medieval Latin validus, from Latin, strong, potent, from valēre

First Known Use: 1571

Synonym Discussion of valid

valid, sound, cogent, convincing, telling mean having such force as to compel serious attention and usually acceptance. valid implies being supported by objective truth or generally accepted authority <a valid reason for being absent> <a valid marriage>. sound implies a basis of flawless reasoning or of solid grounds <a sound proposal for reviving the economy>. cogent may stress either weight of sound argument and evidence or lucidity of presentation <the prosecutor's cogent summation won over the jury>. convincing suggests a power to overcome doubt, opposition, or reluctance to accept <a convincing argument for welfare reform>. telling stresses an immediate and crucial effect striking at the heart of a matter <a telling example of bureaucratic waste>.

Rhymes with valid

VALID Defined for Kids


adjective val·id \ˈva-ləd\

Definition of valid for Students

  1. 1 :  having legal force or effect <a valid driver's license>

  2. 2 :  based on truth or fact <She had a valid excuse for missing practice.>

validly adverb

Law Dictionary


adjective val·id \ˈva-ləd\

Legal Definition of valid

  1. 1 :  having legal efficacy or force <a valid license>; especially :  executed with proper authority and form <a valid contract> <a valid search>

  2. 2 :  having a legitimate basis :  justifiable <a valid reason for terminating the employee>

  3. 3 :  appropriate to the end in view

validity \və-ˈli-də-tē\ play noun
validly adverb

Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up valid? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


expressing little or no emotion

Get Word of the Day daily email!


Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.