col·​league | \ ˈkä-(ˌ)lēg How to pronounce colleague (audio) \

Definition of colleague

: an associate or coworker typically in a profession or in a civil or ecclesiastical office and often of similar rank or state : a fellow worker or professional

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Other Words from colleague

colleagueship \ ˈkä-​(ˌ)lēg-​ˌship How to pronounce colleagueship (audio) \ noun

Synonyms for colleague


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Did You Know?

Which of the following words come from the same source as colleague: College,    legacy,    collaborate,    allegation,    collar,    relegate,    delegate?

It might be easier to guess if you know that the ancestor in question is legare, a Latin verb meaning "to choose or send as a deputy or emissary or "to bequeath." All of the words in the list above except collaborate (which comes from the Latin collaborare, meaning "to labor together") and collar (from collum, Latin for neck) are descendants of legare."

Examples of colleague in a Sentence

Not since Cronkite's CBS mentor and colleague Edward R. Murrow lifted Senator Joe McCarthy by the skunk tail for public inspection had one TV broadcast reflected such a fateful climate change in public opinion. — James Wolcott, Vanity Fair, June 2003 My colleague Gene Sperling and I were standing over my speakerphone, but for all Mario Cuomo knew we were on our knees. — George Stephanopoulos, Newsweek, 15 Mar. 1999 Nineteenth-century naturalist Thomas Henry Huxley, a colleague of Charles Darwin, was the first to suggest that dinosaurs and birds were related. — Laura Tangley, U.S. News & World Report, 6 July 1998 … it gets noticed no more than an hour later by another colleague of mine, whom I've never met personally but know to be an art historian … — John Barth, Atlantic, March 1995 A colleague of mine will be speaking at the conference. on her first day at work her colleagues went out of their way to make her feel welcome
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Recent Examples on the Web Dayton has performed similar work at every airport in the area and speaks frequently with colleagues at the airports to see what's working for them. David Gutman, Anchorage Daily News, "Washington county wants to shoot fireworks at trash-bombing eagles," 18 Feb. 2020 Cummings had fired her on Aug. 29 after accusing her of lying about being in contact with former colleagues close to Javid’s predecessor, Philip Hammond, who is committed to preventing a no-deal Brexit. Jessica Shankleman, Fortune, "On Day 13 in post-Brexit Britain, Boris Johnson loses his finance chief in tumultuous cabinet shakeup," 13 Feb. 2020 Nearly 1,000 scientists and engineers from across Europe gathered with their U.S. colleagues under a full moon as United Launch Alliance's Atlas V rocket blasted off, illuminating the sky for miles around. NBC News, "Solar Orbiter blasts off to capture first look at sun's poles," 10 Feb. 2020 Regulators: People who frequently use both surface acting and deep acting strategies with colleagues, with a slight bias toward superficial pretense. Lila Maclellan, Quartz at Work, "The healthiest way to make friends at work," 7 Feb. 2020 Catherine is convinced Richard is cheating on her with his colleague and friend Gemma (Jasmine Guy). Ariana Romero,, "Grey’s Anatomy," 7 Feb. 2020 Jane Dutton, a professor of psychology at University of Michigan, worked with colleagues to research the ways in which hospital housekeepers feel valued or devalued by the actions of doctors and nurses. Neil Prose, STAT, "In hospitals, housekeepers are truly the ‘keepers of the house’," 5 Feb. 2020 At a news conference with Democratic colleagues Monday, Baldwin said Bolton's accounts suggest the president didn't tell the truth to Johnson last summer. Craig Gilbert, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Ron Johnson joins fellow Senate Republicans in rejecting witnesses in Trump impeachment trial," 31 Jan. 2020 Or make time to meet up with colleagues or friends after clocking out for the day. Paul Nicolaus, Popular Science, "What the happiest cold-weather countries on the planet know about winter," 31 Jan. 2020

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

circa 1533, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for colleague

Middle French collegue, from Latin collega, from com- + legare to depute — more at legate

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Time Traveler for colleague

Time Traveler

The first known use of colleague was circa 1533

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Last Updated

21 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Colleague.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for colleague


How to pronounce colleague (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of colleague

somewhat formal : a person who works with you : a fellow worker


col·​league | \ ˈkä-ˌlēg How to pronounce colleague (audio) \

Kids Definition of colleague

: an associate in a profession : a fellow worker

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