de·​clare di-ˈkler How to pronounce declare (audio)
declared; declaring

transitive verb

: to make known formally, officially, or explicitly
publicly declared her opposition to the plan
: to make known as a determination
The judge declared the defendant fit to stand trial.
She was declared the rightful heir to the throne.
obsolete : to make clear
: to make evident : show
a glimpse of his head in outline … declared his present state of mindOsbert Sitwell
: to state emphatically : affirm
declares his innocence
"You are quite a quiz, I do declare!"Charles Dickens
: to make a full statement of (one's taxable or dutiable property)
Large purchases must be declared at customs.
in card games
: to make a bid or announcement naming (a trump suit or no-trump)
: meld
: to make payable
declare a dividend

intransitive verb

: to make a declaration
poetry … evokes rather than merely declaresC. S. Kilby
: to avow one's opinion or support
declaring for or against a candidate
: to announce one's intentions (as to run for political office)
declared for mayor
declarable adjective
Choose the Right Synonym for declare

declare, announce, proclaim, promulgate mean to make known publicly.

declare implies explicitness and usually formality in making known.

the referee declared the contest a draw

announce implies the declaration of something for the first time.

announced their engagement at a party

proclaim implies declaring clearly, forcefully, and authoritatively.

the president proclaimed a national day of mourning

promulgate implies the proclaiming of a dogma, doctrine, or law.

promulgated an edict of religious toleration

synonyms see in addition assert

Example Sentences

The government has just declared a state of emergency. He openly declared his love for her. They failed to declare all of their earnings on their tax return. Large purchases must be declared at customs. Do you have anything to declare?
Recent Examples on the Web Passengers must declare firearms with the airline when checking a bag at the ticket counter, according to the TSA. Dallas News, 17 Jan. 2023 Candidates in a half-dozen suburban Orange County cities must declare their candidacies for office this month, with some ballots already set and others still accepting new entrants as late as noon on Jan. 27. Ryan Gillespie, Orlando Sentinel, 13 Jan. 2023 That could change with the NCAA’s transfer portal window still open until Jan. 18, and another opening April 15-30 after spring practice, but no additional players from the secondary are expected to declare for the draft. Mike Rodak |, al, 3 Jan. 2023 That’s a day after the World Health Organization is expected to declare the Uganda outbreak over if no new cases are reported. Risdel Kasasira, ajc, 22 Dec. 2022 The city of Portland is expected to declare a state of emergency as well. oregonlive, 20 Dec. 2022 The record-low insurance rate in the U.S. could also be disrupted next year, when the government is expected to declare an end to the COVID-19 pandemic and boot millions of Medicaid recipients off the coverage. Amanda Seitz, Fortune, 23 Nov. 2022 Trump is widely expected to declare his candidacy for President on Tuesday, Nov. 15, at his Florida club. Brian Bennett, Time, 9 Nov. 2022 The Kremlin is expected to move immediately to absorb the regions once the voting is over, with President Vlaidmir Putin expected to declare their incorporation into Russia later this week. Adam Schreck,, 27 Sep. 2022 See More

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

Word History


Middle English, from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French declarer, from Latin declarare, from de- + clarare to make visible, from clarus clear — more at clear

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of declare was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near declare

Cite this Entry

“Declare.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Feb. 2023.

Kids Definition


de·​clare di-ˈkla(ə)r How to pronounce declare (audio)
declared; declaring
: to make known openly or officially
declare war
: to state strongly
declared his innocence
: to make a full statement of (taxable property or items on which duty must be paid)
declarer noun

Legal Definition


transitive verb
declared; declaring
: to make known formally, officially, or explicitly
declaring who shall then act as PresidentU.S. Constitution amend. XX
: to make a full statement of (one's taxable property)
didn't declare some of his income
: to state the value of (one's taxable or dutiable property)
declared the diamond earrings
: to make payable
declare dividends
declarer noun

More from Merriam-Webster on declare

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