candidate

play
noun can·di·date \ ˈkan-də-ˌdāt , ˈka-nə- , -dət \

Definition of candidate

1 a :one that aspires to or is nominated or qualified for an office, membership, or award
  • a candidate for governor
  • a candidate for "Manager of the Year"
  • the best candidate for the job
b :one likely or suited to undergo or be chosen for something specified
  • a candidate for surgery
2 :a student in the process of meeting final requirements for a degree
  • a PhD candidate

candidate was our Word of the Day on 06/28/2007. Hear the podcast!

Examples of candidate in a Sentence

  1. Candidates can apply in person or send a resume.

  2. a Ph.D. candidate in linguistics

  3. The program has several doctoral candidates.

Recent Examples of candidate from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'candidate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Roman Fashion Is Responsible for candidate

When a person running for public office in ancient Rome greeted voters in the Forum, the center of judicial and public business, he wore a toga that had been whitened with chalk. As a result, the Latin word for someone seeking office came to be "candidatus," meaning literally "clothed in white." "Candidatus," in turn, comes from the adjective candidus, meaning "white." "Candidatus" was adopted into English as "candidate" at the beginning of the 17th century.

Origin and Etymology of candidate

Latin candidatus, from candidatus clothed in white, from candidus white; from the white toga worn by candidates for office in ancient Rome


CANDIDATE Defined for English Language Learners

candidate

play
noun

Definition of candidate for English Language Learners

  • : a person who is trying to be elected

  • : a person who is being considered for a job, position, award, etc.

  • : a person who meets all the requirements for something


CANDIDATE Defined for Kids

candidate

play
noun can·di·date \ ˈkan-də-ˌdāt \

Definition of candidate for Students

1 :a person who is trying to be elected
  • a presidential candidate
2 :a person who is being considered for a position or honor
  • a job candidate

History for candidate

A person campaigning for public office in ancient Rome traditionally wore a toga that had been whitened with chalk when he greeted voters in the Forum. Hence the Latin word for an office seeker came to be candidatus, literally meaning “wearing white”; this word itself comes from the adjective candidus, “white, bright.” In the 1600s the word candidatus was borrowed into English to denote someone aspiring to an office, job, or honor.



Seen and Heard

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

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

WORD OF THE DAY

all at once

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Challenging Vocabulary Quiz Returns!

  • stylized-drawing-of-woman-pole-vaulting-across-gap-to-get-trophy
  • Which is a synonym of fuliginous?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!