characterize

verb char·ac·ter·ize \ ˈker-ik-tə-ˌrīz , ˈka-rik- \
Updated on: 15 Nov 2017

Definition of characterize

characterized; characterizing
transitive verb
1 :to describe the character (see 1character 1a) or quality of
  • characterizes him as ambitious
2 :to be a characteristic of :distinguish
  • an era characterized by greed

Examples of characterize in a Sentence

  1. How would you characterize the situation?

  2. I would characterize this as a positive change for our company.

  3. She had difficulty characterizing their relationship.

  4. His personality is hard to characterize.

  5. Farms and large flat fields characterize most of the area.

  6. the beliefs that characterized Europe in the 15th century

Recent Examples of characterize from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of characterize


CHARACTERIZE Defined for English Language Learners

characterize

verb

Definition of characterize for English Language Learners

  • : to describe the character or special qualities of (someone or something)

  • : to be a typical feature or quality of (someone or something)


CHARACTERIZE Defined for Kids

characterize

verb char·ac·ter·ize \ ˈker-ək-tə-ˌrīz \

Definition of characterize for Students

characterized; characterizing
1 :to describe the special qualities of
  • I would characterize this as a positive change.
2 :to be a typical or distinguishing quality of
  • Mystery and intrigue characterize this story.


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