ap·​pli·​ca·​tion | \ ˌa-plə-ˈkā-shən How to pronounce application (audio) \

Definition of application

1 : an act of applying:
a(1) : an act of putting something to use application of new techniques
(2) : a use to which something is put new applications for old remedies
b : an act of administering or laying one thing on another application of paint to a house
c : assiduous attention succeeds by application to her studies
2a : request, petition an application for financial aid
b : a form used in making a request filling out an application
3 : a program (such as a word processor or a spreadsheet) that performs a particular task or set of tasks
4 : the practical conclusion or lesson to be derived from a speech or writing (such as a moral tale)
5 : a medicated or protective layer or material an oily application for dry skin
6 : capacity for practical use words of varied application

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Synonyms for application


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Examples of application in a Sentence

Our loan application has been approved. Anyone interested in running for office must file an application by August 1st. If you'd like to be considered for the job, please send us a letter of application that gives your experience and qualifications. Please fill out this application. The application of heat often helps sore muscles. Repeated application of fertilizer will help the grass become green and healthy. Repeated applications of fertilizer will help the grass become green and healthy. The cut should be treated with a generous application of ointment. Strict application of the rules is necessary in this case. the application of new information
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Recent Examples on the Web Be sure to note how concentrated your mix should be, how long absorption takes and any other important details about application. Brett Dvoretz,, "How to clean a roof," 10 Apr. 2021 We were blessed to break chains and make the Constitution become a real document through application. Arkansas Online, "Letters," 10 Apr. 2021 According to the CityServe website, step No. 1 is to request an application appointment. Winston Gieseke, USA TODAY, "In California: More counties expand vaccine eligibility, but are there enough doses?," 10 Apr. 2021 The Naperville police department in Illinois, which eliminated its $45 application fee in order to appeal to low-income recruits, saw applications double at the peak of protests over Floyd’s death. Melissa Chan, Time, "'I'm Going to Make a Change.' Police Departments Struggle to Recruit Black Cops, So This HBCU Came Up With a Plan," 9 Apr. 2021 By approving this application for a building that cannot legally be built, Landmarks is tacitly approving a request for a whopper of a zoning variance. WSJ, "New York’s Past is a Draw, Worth Preserving," 9 Apr. 2021 The Shuttered Venue Operators Grant application site, which is supposed to help music and arts venues ask for $16 billion in federal aid, opened at 12 p.m. ET on April 8th. Jon Blistein, Rolling Stone, "The U.S. Offered Up $16 Billion to Venues. No One Could Apply," 9 Apr. 2021 Georgia's new and controversial elections overhaul introduces an earlier absentee application deadline, requires voter identification for absentee voting and imposes more stringent limits on drop boxes compared to 2020, among other provisions. Kendall Karson, ABC News, "How some states are expanding voting rights amid sweeping push to restrict access," 9 Apr. 2021 Most of the benefits related to CBD are mainly by ingestion rather than topical application. Meirav Devash, Allure, "21 CBD Products That Will Elevate Your Beauty Routine But Won't Get You High," 9 Apr. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'application.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of application

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for application

Middle English applicacioun, from Latin application-, applicatio inclination, from applicare — see apply

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Time Traveler for application

Time Traveler

The first known use of application was in the 14th century

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Statistics for application

Last Updated

12 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Application.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for application



English Language Learners Definition of application

: a formal and usually written request for something (such as a job, admission to a school, a loan, etc.)
: a document that is used to make a formal request for something
: the act of putting something on a surface, a part of the body, etc.


ap·​pli·​ca·​tion | \ ˌa-plə-ˈkā-shən How to pronounce application (audio) \

Kids Definition of application

1 : the act or an instance of applying application of the rules One application of paint should cover the wall well enough.
2 : something put or spread on a surface The nurse put cold applications on the sprained ankle.
3 : request entry 1 sense 1 an application for a job
4 : a document used to make a request for something You have to fill out an application.
5 : ability to be put to practical use The tool has a number of applications.
6 : a computer program (as a word processor or browser)


ap·​pli·​ca·​tion | \ ˌap-lə-ˈkā-shən How to pronounce application (audio) \

Medical Definition of application

1 : an act of applying the application of a dressing to a wound
2 : a medicated or protective layer or material an oily application for dry skin

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Legal Definition of application

: a request for action or relief most applications request bail…or an extension of time to file— W. J. Brennan, Jr. also : a form used to make such a request an insurance application

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