com·pet·i·tive | \ kəm-ˈpe-tə-tiv \

Definition of competitive 

1 : relating to, characterized by, or based on competition competitive sports a competitive marketplace

2 : inclined, desiring, or suited to compete a competitive personality competitive interest rates

3 : depending for effectiveness on the relative concentration of two or more substances competitive inhibition of an enzyme

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Other words from competitive

competitively adverb
competitiveness noun

Examples of competitive in a Sentence

She is a very competitive player. You need a degree to be competitive in today's job market.

Recent Examples on the Web

The competitive nature of these guys in the street, that vie for the biggest prize or the hottest girl. Josie Duffy Rice, The Atlantic, "The Gospel According to Pusha T," 12 July 2018 Adler himself was the youngest of two boys, a sickly child who was fiercely competitive with his older brother, Sigmund. Adam Sternbergh, The Cut, "The Extinction of the Middle Child," 11 July 2018 The president’s average Gallup approval rating over his first year in office was just 39 percent in the state, lower than in many places that are politically competitive. Andrew Rice, Daily Intelligencer, "Can a Democrat Ever Win in Texas?," 10 July 2018 This is part of his routine, as well, the downside of his competitive nature. Doug Haller, azcentral, "ASU basketball's Bobby Hurley finds a home in the Arizona desert," 9 July 2018 There’s only one black friend on the TV show, so that reinforced my competitive nature. Kristin Wong, Glamour, "Are Women Afraid to Compete With Each Other at Work?," 5 July 2018 Beyond metro New York City, Democrats will pick nominees in four upstate Republican districts that could be competitive in November. Bill Barrow, The Seattle Times, "Things to Know: Trump looms over Tuesday’s primaries," 25 June 2018 The good at-bats are a by-product of Profar's baseball IQ and his competitive nature. Jeff Wilson, star-telegram, "Profar comes up big for Rangers in final game as everyday shortstop," 17 June 2018 Myers was not going to be outdone by anyone else in the workout, and the Royals liked his competitive nature. Lee Judge Special To The Star, kansascity, "Royals pre-draft workouts: what a team can learn by seeing a prospect in person," 14 June 2018

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

1829, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for competitive

see competition

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Statistics for competitive

Last Updated

1 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for competitive

The first known use of competitive was in 1829

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English Language Learners Definition of competitive

: of or relating to a situation in which people or groups are trying to win a contest or be more successful than others : relating to or involving competition

: having a strong desire to win or be the best at something

: as good as or better than others of the same kind : able to compete successfully with others


com·pet·i·tive | \ kəm-ˈpe-tə-tiv \

Kids Definition of competitive

: characterized by or based on a situation in which more than one person is striving for the same thing competitive sports


com·pet·i·tive | \ kəm-ˈpet-ət-iv \

Medical Definition of competitive 

: depending for effectiveness on the relative concentration of two or more substances competitive inhibition of an enzyme competitive protein binding

Other words from competitive

competitively adverb

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Comments on competitive

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


the setting in which something occurs

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