as·​pi·​ra·​tion·​al | \ ˌas-pə-ˈrā-sh(ə-)nəl \

Definition of aspirational 

: of, relating to, or characterized by aspiration aspirational goals : such as
a : having or showing a desire to achieve a high level of success or social status … private schools are patronised … by parents struggling to produce intelligent, clear-thinking, disciplined, polite, aspirational children …— Katie Grant
b : associated with or suggestive of a high level of success and social status and therefore appealing to people who aspire to such status aspirational brands/products

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Other Words from aspirational

aspirationally adverb

Examples of aspirational in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Such shots are carefully lighted, and their glow is aspirational. David Thomson, WSJ, "Farewell My Lovely?," 14 Dec. 2018 In 2000, the couple announced their separation, and the divorce was finalized in 2003—and their post-split relationship is pretty aspirational. Emma Dibdin, Country Living, "How Patti LaBelle Moved on After Her Divorce with Ex-Husband Armstead Edwards," 24 Nov. 2018 Its late founder, Versace’s brother Gianni, was a fashion icon who dressed rock stars and princesses, and that flashiness remains aspirational today. Kim Bhasin, The Seattle Times, "Michael Kors $2 billion bet on Versace may be too bold," 25 Sep. 2018 The aspirational goal is for the first segment of the Northpark project to go for bid in 2020 and possibly have construction underway that year as well. Melanie Feuk, Houston Chronicle, "Northpark Drive expansion estimate grows to nearly $86 million," 29 June 2018 Such books matched the needs of students, professionals, and other aspirational readers who used these texts for practical purposes. Amanda Laugesen, Smithsonian, "This Cold War-Era Publishing House Wanted To Share American Values With the World," 13 July 2018 But the transactional tended to be married to the aspirational, even by Republicans. Karl Vick, Time, "Trump's Decision to Expel Salvadoran Immigrants Reverses an American Tradition," 11 Jan. 2018 At a whopping $4,100, the Studio was an aspirational device that all would covet, but few could afford. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "Microsoft launches next-gen Surface Pro 6, Surface Laptop, Surface Studio and more," 2 Oct. 2018 Since stepping onto the scene in 2016, Sasha Lane has caused heads to swivel with glittering hair jewelry, artful eyeliner, and a palpable confidence that renders any look a touch more aspirational. Calin Van Paris, Vogue, "Sasha Lane Has a Celestial Hair Moment on the Red Carpet—and It's Worth a Closer Look," 23 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'aspirational.' 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 aspirational

1866, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for aspirational

aspiration + -al entry 1

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Last Updated

8 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for aspirational

The first known use of aspirational was in 1866

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More from Merriam-Webster on aspirational

Britannica English: Translation of aspirational for Arabic Speakers

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involving abstract or general statements

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