also-ran

noun
al·​so-ran | \ ˈȯl(t)-(ˌ)sō-ˌran How to pronounce also-ran (audio) , ˈȯ- \

Definition of also-ran

1 : a horse or dog that finishes out of the money in a race
2 : a contestant that does not win
3 : one that is of little importance especially competitively was just an also-ran in the scramble for … privileges— C. A. Buss

First Known Use of also-ran

1895, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about also-ran

Time Traveler for also-ran

Time Traveler

The first known use of also-ran was in 1895

See more words from the same year

Statistics for also-ran

Cite this Entry

“Also-ran.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/also-ran. Accessed 25 Sep. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for also-ran

also-ran

noun
How to pronounce also-ran (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of also-ran

: a person who has taken part in an election or contest and did not win

More from Merriam-Webster on also-ran

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for also-ran

Comments on also-ran

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

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Challenging Vocabulary Quiz Returns!

  • stylized drawing of woman pole vaulting across gap to get trophy
  • Which is a synonym of fuliginous?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Syn City

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

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!