au·​thor·​i·​ta·​tive | \ə-ˈthär-ə-ˌtā-tiv, ȯ-, -ˈthȯr-\

Definition of authoritative 

1 : having, marked by, or proceeding from authority authoritative church doctrines an authoritative decision an authoritative manner

2 : possessing recognized or evident authority : clearly accurate or knowledgeable an authoritative critique an authoritative source of information

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Other Words from authoritative

authoritatively adverb
authoritativeness noun

Examples of authoritative in a Sentence

The book is an authoritative guide to the city's restaurants. His manner is polite but authoritative. She addressed the group with an authoritative voice.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Here was the professor at his best: clear, authoritative, dramatic. Johnforristerross, Longreads, "Taming the Great American Desert," 2 July 2018 Today's Google Assistant requires authoritative, direct, perfect speech in order to process a command. Ron Amadeo, Ars Technica, "Talking to Google Duplex: Google’s human-like phone AI feels revolutionary," 27 June 2018 Like President Trump, many leaders, including myself, try to follow an authoritative leadership style requiring a highly loyal, trusted group of advisors, that understand the vision being set and can support the implementation of decisions. Erin Arvedlund,, "Trump fires Tillerson. So what do Philly CEOs think and how do they fire people?," 13 Mar. 2018 The book considered in retrospect as a whole is an admirably clear, straightforward and authoritative summing up of our present-day attitude toward the theatre and its outward expression. New York Times, "Notes From the Book Review Archives," 4 May 2018 Identifying which news outlets are authoritative is hard enough in the United States, where people can subsist on completely different media diets according to their politics. Issie Lapowsky, WIRED, "YouTube Debuts Plan to Promote and Fund 'Authoritative' News," 9 July 2018 Considered authoritative by experts, the CDC report contradicts popular story lines from both ends of the political spectrum. Ricardo Alonso-zaldivar,, "Americans cling to Obama-era health coverage, despite political drama," 22 May 2018 The supporting cast is underserved in the trailer other than Jocko Sims looking authoritative and Tyler Labine looking painfully serious. Daniel Fienberg, The Hollywood Reporter, "NBCUniversal's New Show Trailers: A Critic's Ranking," 14 May 2018 With frequent appearances on national TV talk shows, his authoritative voice is more familiar than most political leaders'. azcentral, "From climate to fry bread, 125 reasons to love Arizona," 15 May 2015

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

1606, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for authoritative

see authority

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Statistics for authoritative

Last Updated

5 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for authoritative

The first known use of authoritative was in 1606

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More Definitions for authoritative



English Language Learners Definition of authoritative

: having or showing impressive knowledge about a subject

: having the confident quality of someone who is respected or obeyed by other people


au·​thor·​i·​ta·​tive | \ə-ˈthȯr-ə-ˌtā-tiv \

Kids Definition of authoritative

: having or coming from authority an authoritative order

Other Words from authoritative

authoritatively adverb

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Comments on authoritative

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


playful or foolish behavior

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