bona fide

bo·​na fide | \ ˈbō-nə-ˌfīd How to pronounce bona fide (audio) , ˈbä-; ˌbō-nə-ˈfī-dē, -ˈfī-də How to pronounce bona fide (audio) \

Definition of bona fide

1 : neither specious nor counterfeit : genuine has become a bona fide celebrity
2 : made with earnest intent : sincere a bona fide proposal
3 law : made in good faith without fraud or deceit a bona fide offer to buy a farm

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Synonyms & Antonyms for bona fide


authentic, certifiable, certified, dinkum [Australian & New Zealand], echt, genuine, honest, pukka (also pucka), real, right, sure-enough, true


bogus, counterfeit, fake, false, mock, phony (also phoney), pseudo, sham, spurious, suppositious, supposititious, unauthentic, unreal

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Choose the Right Synonym for bona fide

authentic, genuine, bona fide mean being actually and exactly what is claimed. authentic implies being fully trustworthy as according with fact an authentic account of the perilous journey ; it can also stress painstaking or faithful imitation of an original. an authentic reproduction authentic Vietnamese cuisine genuine implies actual character not counterfeited, imitated, or adulterated genuine piety genuine maple syrup ; it also connotes definite origin from a source. a genuine Mark Twain autograph bona fide implies good faith and sincerity of intention. a bona fide offer for the stock

Did You Know?

Bona fide means "in good faith" in Latin. When applied to business deals and the like, it stresses the absence of fraud or deception. A bona fide sale of securities is an entirely aboveboard transaction. Outside of business and law, bona fide implies mere sincerity and earnestness. A bona fide promise is one that the person has every intention of keeping. A bona fide proposal of marriage is one made by a suitor who isn't kidding around. Bona fide also has the noun form bona fides; when someone asks about someone else's bona fides, it usually means evidence of their qualifications or achievements.

Examples of bona fide in a Sentence

She has established her position as a bona fide celebrity. His latest record was a bona fide hit. They have a bona fide claim for the loss.
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Recent Examples on the Web

But being a bona fide literary achievement doesn’t mean it’s not brand management. Amos Barshad, New York Times, "What Happens When Athletes Do the Sportswriting?," 21 Feb. 2018 Carlos Correa is a bona fide first-round fantasy pick. Michael Beller,, "Shortstop Primer: The Position's Fantasy Renaissance Continues Unabated," 17 Feb. 2018 President Theo Epstein decided to go with the status quo, downplaying the importance of a bona fide leadoff guy. Paul Sullivan,, "Guessing game begins for Cubs leadoff man with no obvious choice in sight," 16 Feb. 2018 Norman Lear and Rita Moreno, a.k.a two bona fide living legends, just made the greatest entrance onto the Golden Globes red carpet. Emma Dibdin, Country Living, "See Norman Lear and Rita Moreno Literally Roll Into The Golden Globes," 7 Jan. 2018 Nonetheless, the ten-year-old Joan of Arc parade is the first bona fide Mardi Gras parade., "Why does Mardi Gras season start Saturday, Jan. 6?," 5 Jan. 2018 That description suggested only bona fide diplomats and their family members were struck, with no logical motivation beyond disrupting U.S.-Cuban relations., "Attacks in Havana hit U.S. spy network in Cuba," 2 Oct. 2017

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

1632, in the meaning defined at sense 3

History and Etymology for bona fide

Latin, literally, in good faith

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More Definitions for bona fide

bona fide


English Language Learners Definition of bona fide

: real or genuine
law : made or done in an honest and sincere way

bona fide

bo·​na fide | \ ˈbō-nə-ˌfīd How to pronounce bona fide (audio) , ˈbä-\

Kids Definition of bona fide

: genuine sense 1 I have a bona fide excuse.

bona fide

bo·​na fide | \ ˈbō-nə-ˌfīd, ˈbä-nə-; ˌbō-nə-ˈfī-dē, -ˈfī-də How to pronounce bona fide (audio) \

Legal Definition of bona fide

1a : characterized by good faith and lack of fraud or deceit a bona fide offer
b : valid under or in compliance with the law retirement incentives made part of a bona fide employee benefit plan
2 : made with or characterized by sincerity a bona fide belief
3 : being real or genuine bona fide residents

History and Etymology for bona fide

Latin, in good faith

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More from Merriam-Webster on bona fide

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with bona fide

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for bona fide

Spanish Central: Translation of bona fide

Nglish: Translation of bona fide for Spanish Speakers

Comments on bona fide

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


to move with exaggerated bouncy motions

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