cli·​ent | \ˈklī-ənt \

Definition of client 

1 : one that is under the protection of another : dependent a first-rate power, able to defend her political clients in central and eastern Europe— W. W. Kulski

2a : a person who engages the professional advice or services of another a lawyer's clients a personal trainer … enjoyed the challenges of helping clients buff up their bodies.— S. K. Parks

b : customer hotel clients a restaurant's clients

c : a person served by or utilizing the services of a social agency a welfare client

d : a computer in a network that uses the services (such as access to files or shared peripherals) provided by a server also : software that allows a computer to function as a client in a network

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Other Words from client

clientage \-​ən-​tij \ noun
cliental \klī-​ˈen-​tᵊl, ˈklī-​ən-​ \ adjective
clientless \ˈklī-​ənt-​ləs \ adjective

Synonyms for client


account, customer, guest, patron, punter [chiefly British]

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Examples of client in a Sentence

The accountant is meeting with another client right now, but she'll be able to see you later this afternoon. a law firm soliciting new clients through television advertising

Recent Examples on the Web

But clients didn’t have the exchange to dispose of their needles for the rest of the week, forcing them to find other means for disposal most of the time. German Lopez, Vox, "Needle exchanges help combat the opioid crisis. But officials keep shutting them down.," 29 Nov. 2018 Gaga is reportedly one of his clients, as are a number of other celebrities. Megan Friedman, Harper's BAZAAR, "Who Is Christian Carino? 7 Things to Know About Lady Gaga’s Fiancé," 16 Oct. 2018 Defense attorney Charles Lee has said his client was having second thoughts, and didn’t take steps to carry out the plot. Frank Miles, Fox News, "California man sentenced for plotting ISIS-inspired San Francisco attack," 2 Oct. 2018 My clients had to let go of some beautiful pieces that just didn’t work. Whitney Robinson, ELLE Decor, "A Maximalist Dream Home Comes to Life In Seville," 5 Sep. 2018 Click the attachment icon in your email client and then navigate to the Users/username/AppData/Roaming/Microsoft/Quick Styles folder on your hard drive. Jd Sartain, PCWorld, "How to create and share custom Style Sheets in Word and PowerPoint," 8 Aug. 2018 Giesen said his client has texts and emails that show the relationship was consensual, and that police investigated and declined to refer any charges to prosecutors. Bruce Vielmetti, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Lawrence University sued over campus sex assault procedures," 13 July 2018 Among his clients: Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey, and the government of Qatar. Lev Facher, STAT, "Read the fine print: N.J. senator sets up phony health news website to attack challenger Bob Hugin," 13 July 2018 To avoid more prison time, Mitchell said, her client agreed, pleading no contest to voluntary manslaughter and child abuse. Marisa Gerber,, "Judge orders release of woman who served 11 years behind bars in grandson's death," 12 July 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for client

Middle English, from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French client, from Latin client-, cliens; perhaps akin to Latin clinare to lean — more at lean

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Statistics for client

Last Updated

11 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for client

The first known use of client was in the 14th century

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English Language Learners Definition of client

: a person who pays a professional person or organization for services

: a customer in a shop or hotel

computers : a computer in a network that uses the services provided by a server


cli·​ent | \ˈklī-ənt \

Kids Definition of client

: a person who uses the professional advice or services of another

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Comments on client

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


a soft lustrous wool fabric with mohair

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