com·​men·​su·​rate kə-ˈmen(t)s-rət How to pronounce commensurate (audio)
: corresponding in size, extent, amount, or degree : proportionate
was given a job commensurate with her abilities
: equal in measure or extent : coextensive
lived a life commensurate with the early years of the republic
commensurately adverb
commensuration noun

Did you know?

Commensurate comes from the Latin word for the act of measuring, mensūra. That noun is based on mensus, the past participle of the verb mētīrī," meaning "to determine the extent of."

Examples of commensurate in a Sentence

Because the effects of tobacco are slow—and iterative—and produce diseases that have other causes and explanations, often later in life, they seldom arouse fear commensurate with their impact. Allan M. Brandt, The Cigarette Century, (2007) 2009
The last of the string family, the double bass, is the largest of all and must be played standing. Because it is seen in jazz bands, it has recently taken on an importance more nearly commensurate with its size. Aaron Copland, What to Listen for in Music, (1957) 1988
… athletes are rewarded commensurate with their fame, not their intrinsic talent … Frank Deford, Sports Illustrated, 21 Dec. 1987
I find it interesting that the meanest life, the poorest existence, is attributed to God's will, but as human beings become more affluent, as their living standard and style begin to ascend the material scale, God descends the scale of responsibility at a commensurate speed. Maya Angelou, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, 1969
Her new position came with a commensurate level of responsibility. was given a job commensurate with her abilities and experience See More
Recent Examples on the Web The natural fallout from the Pac-12’s inability to secure a media rights deal commensurate with those of the other Power Five conferences makes this the last season of championship events in every sport, and football is among the first to go. Jack Magruder, Forbes, 30 Nov. 2023 Scheduling issues were cited, but sources say Ortega — who has skyrocketed from child star to supporting player in last year’s Scream to the A-list thanks to her turn in the Netflix series Wednesday — asked for a bigger payday for the seventh installment, commensurate with her status. Borys Kit, The Hollywood Reporter, 29 Nov. 2023 Unlike a record player—or the reel-to-reel tape player—the boom box was both portable and commensurate with the scale and the volume of the city. Jon Michaud, The New Yorker, 16 Nov. 2023 Empowerment: Each employee is given some amount of responsibility, and with that responsibility should come a commensurate amount of authority. Jason Foodman, Forbes, 13 Nov. 2023 In the interview, Baptiste also pointed to ESA's policy of geographic return, which means European countries should receive industrial contracts commensurate with their expenditures on a program. Stephen Clark, Ars Technica, 7 Nov. 2023 It is staffed by volunteers who undergo a multi-stage application process, background check and training program, and then are supervised by staff with master’s degrees in a relevant field or commensurate crisis intervention experience, the organization says. Mallory Moench, TIME, 22 Oct. 2023 In 2019, then Senator Kamala Harris, a career prosecutor, introduced the Ensuring Quality Access to Legal Defense (EQUAL) Act, a bill that would, among other things, establish workload limits for public defenders and make their salaries commensurate with those of prosecutors. Sue Halpern, The New Yorker, 5 Oct. 2023 And that was not accompanied by commensurate increases in resources and increases in funding support by the Congress. Sarah Matusek, The Christian Science Monitor, 3 Oct. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'commensurate.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Late Latin commensuratus, from Latin com- + Late Latin mensuratus, past participle of mensurare to measure, from Latin mensura measure — more at measure

First Known Use

1641, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Time Traveler
The first known use of commensurate was in 1641


Dictionary Entries Near commensurate

Cite this Entry

“Commensurate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 8 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


com·​men·​su·​rate kə-ˈmen(t)s-(ə-)rət How to pronounce commensurate (audio)
: equal in measure or extent
: proportional sense 1
an income commensurate with one's needs
commensurately adverb
commensuration noun

More from Merriam-Webster on commensurate

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