noun, often attributive
dep·​u·​ty | \ ˈde-pyə-tē How to pronounce deputy (audio) \
plural deputies

Definition of deputy

1a : a person appointed as a substitute with power to act
b : a second in command or assistant who usually takes charge when his or her superior is absent
2 : a member of the lower house of some legislative assemblies

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Examples of deputy in a Sentence

the club president sent a deputy to the conference to vote on our behalf a deputy supervisor to help out with routine tasks

Recent Examples on the Web

Alyssa Mastromonaco was White House deputy chief of staff for operations from 2011 to 2014 and is a contributing editor to Marie Claire. Alyssa Mastromonaco, Marie Claire, "Alyssa Mastromonaco Explores Her Non-Decision to Not Have Kids," 5 Mar. 2019 Finally, Lincoln’s onetime deputy private secretary John Hay, by then the U.S. Secretary of State, brought the decision-makers to their senses with his powerful testimony and professional pedigree. Harold Holzer, WSJ, "An American Icon That Almost Wasn’t," 15 Feb. 2019 To me, that suggests the official isn’t someone totally obscure who would embarrass the paper if his or her identity became known, like a deputy assistant secretary in a backwater Cabinet agency. Andrew Prokop, Vox, "Who is the senior Trump official who wrote the New York Times op-ed?," 6 Sep. 2018 When deputies arrived in the area, Crowley had already allegedly fled. Samantha Schmidt,, "Baby survives 9 hours buried under debris in Montana woods," 9 July 2018 Wickersham said 30 to 70 people were at the block party when deputies arrived at the scene. Jennifer Dixon, Detroit Free Press, "Mount Clemens block-party murder suspect arrested at outside Chicago," 7 July 2018 According to Holmes County Sheriff Willie March, who spoke to reporters about the kidnapping, Lloyd fled the scene of the abduction in Cruger before deputies could arrive — taking Kamaya with him but leaving the baby’s mom behind. Chris Harris,, "Dad Kidnaps His Infant Daughter Then Kills Her and Himself as Authorities Close In," 6 July 2018 The diaper-clad baby was found wrapped up in a blanket, deputies said. Jacob Beltran, San Antonio Express-News, "Dead baby found in trunk during drug search at West Side home," 3 July 2018 Since Sessions recused himself from the Mueller investigation, deputy attorney general Rod Rosenstein has been in charge of it, working with Mueller. Cindy Otis, Teen Vogue, "Why Jeff Sessions's Resignation May Be Sketchier Than You Think," 8 Nov. 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for deputy

Middle English, from Anglo-French deputé, past participle of deputer

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Statistics for deputy

Last Updated

19 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for deputy

The first known use of deputy was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for deputy


dep·​u·​ty | \ ˈde-pyə-tē How to pronounce deputy (audio) \
plural deputies

Kids Definition of deputy

: a person who officially acts for or in place of another


dep·​u·​ty | \ ˈde-pyə-tē How to pronounce deputy (audio) \
plural deputies

Legal Definition of deputy

1 : a person appointed as a substitute with power to act
2 : a second in command or assistant who usually takes charge when his or her superior is absent specifically : deputy sheriff

History and Etymology for deputy

Middle French deputé person appointed to exercise authority, from past participle of deputer to appoint, depute

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More from Merriam-Webster on deputy

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for deputy

Spanish Central: Translation of deputy

Nglish: Translation of deputy for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of deputy for Arabic Speakers

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