verb ac·knowl·edge \ik-ˈnä-lij, ak-\

Definition of acknowledge




  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to recognize the rights, authority, or status of They acknowledged him as their leader.

  3. 2 :  to disclose knowledge of or agreement with She readily acknowledged her mistake.

  4. 3a :  to express gratitude or obligation for acknowledge a giftb :  to take notice of failed to acknowledge my greetingc :  to make known the receipt of acknowledge a letter

  5. 4 :  to recognize as genuine or valid acknowledge a debt

Examples of acknowledge in a sentence

  1. They acknowledged that the decision was a mistake.

  2. Do you acknowledge that you caused this mess?

  3. They readily acknowledged their mistake.

  4. She won't acknowledge responsibility for her actions.

  5. He quickly acknowledges all of my e-mails when he receives them.

  6. Please acknowledge receipt of this letter.

  7. She acknowledged the gift with a card.

  8. She acknowledged his greeting with a smile.

Origin and Etymology of acknowledge

ac- (as in accord) + knowledge

First Known Use: 15th century

Synonym Discussion of acknowledge

acknowledge, admit, own, avow, confess mean to disclose against one's will or inclination. acknowledge implies the disclosing of something that has been or might be concealed. acknowledged an earlier peccadillo admit implies reluctance to disclose, grant, or concede and refers usually to facts rather than their implications. admitted the project was over budget own implies acknowledging something in close relation to oneself. must own I know little about computers avow implies boldly declaring, often in the face of hostility, what one might be expected to be silent about. avowed that he was a revolutionary confess may apply to an admission of a weakness, failure, omission, or guilt. confessed a weakness for sweets

ACKNOWLEDGE Defined for English Language Learners


verb ac·knowl·edge \ik-ˈnä-lij, ak-\

Definition of acknowledge for English Language Learners

  • : to say that you accept or do not deny the truth or existence of (something)

  • : to regard or describe (someone or something) as having or deserving a particular status

  • : to tell or show someone that something (such as a letter or message) has been received

ACKNOWLEDGE Defined for Kids


verb ac·knowl·edge \ik-ˈnä-lij, ak-\

Definition of acknowledge for Students




  1. 1 :  to admit the truth or existence of They acknowledged their mistake.

  2. 2 :  to make known that something has been received or noticed He refuses to acknowledge my generosity.

  3. 3 :  to recognize the rights or authority of They acknowledged her as captain.

  4. 4 :  to express thanks or appreciation for acknowledge a gift

Law Dictionary


transitive verb ac·knowl·edge

Legal Definition of acknowledge



  1. 1 :  to indicate recognition and acceptance of the power of taxation in the general and state governments is acknowledged to be concurrent — McCulloch v. Maryland, 17 U.S. 316 (1819)

  2. 2a :  to show by word or act that one has knowledge of and accepts responsibility for (a duty, obligation, or indebtedness) b :  to admit paternity of will acknowledge the child as his — compare filiate

  3. 3 :  to make known to a sender or giver the receipt of (what has been sent or given) or the fact of (one's having received what has been sent or given) acknowledge receipt of a letter

  4. 4 :  to recognize as genuine so as to give validity :  avow or admit in legal form the execution of any such power of attorney shall be acknowledged before one of the officers — U.S. Code

Seen and Heard

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a trip made at another's expense

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