as·​pi·​ra·​tion·​al | \ ˌa-spə-ˈrā-sh(ə-)nəl How to pronounce aspirational (audio) \

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 While these sorts of liquids are aspirational—to say the least—part of the genius of Paterson is his ability to build a coherent and consistent house style. Brad Japhe, Forbes, 5 Oct. 2021 Apparently, though, even that was an illusion—many of the headliners were aspirational and the ad’s image was lifted from Global Citizens Fest. Declan Harty, Fortune, 1 Oct. 2021 Another shift seems to lie in what, exactly, teens consider to be aspirational. Kate Dwyer, The New Yorker, 23 Sep. 2021 Although the idea of a natural pregnancy glow is aspirational, the truth is pregnancy can wreak havoc on skin. Rachel Burchfield, Harper's BAZAAR, 21 Sep. 2021 But experts now say that, despite the good intentions, many of those cities’ individual plans were aspirational at best. Dinah Voyles Pulver, Sarah Bowman, USA TODAY, 10 Aug. 2021 This transformation is still, in part, aspirational at many organisations today. Naomi Benjamin, Forbes, 9 Sep. 2021 But luckily, for our world, people really are looking for that aspirational piece. Leanne Italie, ajc, 8 Sep. 2021 Last year one survey showed that most people had not replaced commuting time with aspirational pastimes like exercise or a language class, but with more work. Lila Maclellan, Quartz, 8 Sep. 2021

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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Time Traveler for aspirational

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The first known use of aspirational was in 1866

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Dictionary Entries Near aspirational



aspiration biopsy

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Statistics for aspirational

Last Updated

9 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Aspirational.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Oct. 2021.

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More from Merriam-Webster on aspirational

Britannica English: Translation of aspirational for Arabic Speakers


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