dem·​on·​strate | \ˈde-mən-ˌstrāt \
demonstrated; demonstrating

Definition of demonstrate 

transitive verb

1 : to show clearly demonstrate a willingness to cooperate must demonstrate mastery of the subject matter in order to pass the class The police demonstrated calm restraint during the riot.

2a : to prove or make clear by reasoning or evidence crowded classrooms that demonstrate the need for more schools in the area

b : to illustrate and explain especially with many examples demonstrate a procedure

3 : to show or prove the value or efficiency of to a prospective buyer demonstrate a new kitchen gadget

intransitive verb

: to make a demonstration Allow me to demonstrate. crowds demonstrating for the right to vote

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Synonyms & Antonyms for demonstrate


document, establish, prove, substantiate, validate


disprove, rebut, refute

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Choose the Right Synonym for demonstrate

show, manifest, evidence, evince, demonstrate mean to reveal outwardly or make apparent. show is the general term but sometimes implies that what is revealed must be gained by inference from acts, looks, or words. careful not to show his true feelings manifest implies a plainer, more immediate revelation. manifested musical ability at an early age evidence suggests serving as proof of the actuality or existence of something. a commitment evidenced by years of loyal service evince implies a showing by outward marks or signs. evinced not the slightest fear demonstrate implies showing by action or by display of feeling. demonstrated their approval by loud applause

Examples of demonstrate in a Sentence

Each student must demonstrate mastery of the subject matter in order to pass the class. Employees must demonstrate competence in certain skills before they can work independently. The medication will not be marketed until it is demonstrated to be safe. The latest test results clearly demonstrate that the vaccine works. The group's failed efforts demonstrate how difficult it is to convince people to change their habits. They have demonstrated a willingness to negotiate. Several people will be demonstrating traditional farming techniques. The instructor demonstrated the correct procedure for pruning a tree. Would you mind demonstrating how the machine works?
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Recent Examples on the Web

But even small donations demonstrate how an unexpected alliance of interests has emerged between the home-sharing companies and groups battling government regulation of property. Colin Lecher, The Verge, "How conservative ‘property rights’ groups are battling cites’ Airbnb rules," 14 Aug. 2018 The Conners’ stories demonstrate that families can always find common ground through conversation, laughter, and love. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "Everything to Know About the 'Roseanne' Spinoff 'The Conners'," 2 Aug. 2018 That said, the rear-endings demonstrate that the technology is far from perfect. Aarian Marshall, WIRED, "A Cruise-on-Cruise Crash Reveals the Hardest Thing About Self-Driving Tech," 3 July 2018 Which is why Frans de Waal, one of the world’s leading experts on animal behaviour, has turned his attention to the operating theatre to demonstrate how insights drawn from his discipline might improve surgical practice. The Economist, "Mixed surgical teams lead to less medical error," 2 July 2018 Rybka said scientists ran ADMX using the new MSA from January 2017 to August 2017 to demonstrate that the amplifier was effective in reducing noise. Douglas Messier,, "Super-Sensitive Device Seeks Axions, Proposed Dark Matter Particles," 2 July 2018 His public and private views demonstrate the dueling forces pulling at Rosenstein in the special counsel’s investigation of the president and his associates., "‘Shaken’ Rosenstein felt used by White House in Comey firing," 30 June 2018 An impressive selection of paintings and graphic works demonstrate how O'Conor moved away from Impressionism and toward his unique signature style of capturing landscapes. David Jefferys, Condé Nast Traveler, "What to Do in Dublin in July 2018," 28 June 2018 Although these filters are generally safe, these reports demonstrate that IVC filters can cause complications and ought to be removed as early, and as safely, as possible., "Medical mystery: An unexpected - and ironic - cause of chest pain," 24 June 2018

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

1548, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for demonstrate

borrowed from Latin dēmonstrātus, past participle of dēmonstrāre "to draw attention to, indicate, describe, show," from dē- de- + monstrāre "to point out, show" — more at muster entry 2

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Statistics for demonstrate

Last Updated

16 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for demonstrate

The first known use of demonstrate was in 1548

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More Definitions for demonstrate



English Language Learners Definition of demonstrate

: to prove (something) by showing examples of it : to show evidence of (something)

: to prove (something) by being an example of it : to be evidence of (something)

: to show (a quality, feeling, etc.) clearly to other people


dem·​on·​strate | \ˈde-mən-ˌstrāt \
demonstrated; demonstrating

Kids Definition of demonstrate

1 : to show clearly He demonstrates a willingness to change.

2 : to prove or make clear by reasoning Galileo demonstrated that the earth revolves around the sun.

3 : to explain (as in teaching) by use of examples or experiments My science project demonstrates blood circulation.

4 : to show to people the good qualities of an article or a product demonstrate a new car

5 : to make a public display (as of feelings or military force) Marchers demonstrated for human rights.


dem·​on·​strate | \ˈdem-ən-ˌstrāt \
demonstrated; demonstrating

Medical Definition of demonstrate 

transitive verb

1 : to show clearly demonstrated the artery arteriographically

2 : to prove or make clear by reasoning or evidence

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Comments on demonstrate

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a private place of worship

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