Definition of bona fide
- a bona fide offer to buy a farm
- a bona fide proposal
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.
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.
First Known Use: 1632See Words from the same year
: real or genuine
law : made or done in an honest and sincere way
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