descriptor

noun
de·​scrip·​tor | \di-ˈskrip-tər \

Definition of descriptor 

: something (such as a word or characteristic feature) that serves to describe or identify especially : a word or phrase (such as an index term) used to identify an item (such as a subject or document) in an information retrieval system

Examples of descriptor in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Fashion and fantasy are not archetypical descriptors for small kitchen appliances. Ann Trieger Kurland, BostonGlobe.com, "Fashion meets function — on a countertop," 7 May 2018 Via phone from his Saratoga, California home, Williamson is only too happy to expound on his descriptors and projects -- especially his latest, the excellent band Pink Hearts, a trio that’s created an expansive 11-song album, Behind the Shade. Katherine Turman, Billboard, "James Williamson on His New Trio Pink Hearts & the Stooges' Legacy," 21 June 2018 However, Markle did not receive that same descriptor in the letter of approval from the monarch (below). Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "Why Queen Elizabeth Called Kate Middleton 'Our Trusty and Well-Beloved,' But Not Meghan Markle," 12 May 2018 Those descriptors probably apply to several of Kelly’s own ancestors. Philip Bump, BostonGlobe.com, "How John Kelly’s family history compares with the immigrants he wants to keep from entering," 11 May 2018 The score report also provides the student results in one of four descriptors: did not meet, approaches, meets, and masters. Bill Mchenry And Eric Simpson, star-telegram, "Educators disagree on what we're really learning from statewide STAAR tests? Here are two views," 1 June 2018 Sauce Hockey, the retailer selling the shirts, also apologized for the descriptors. Chris Morris, Fortune, "Walmart Was Once Again Forced to Pull an Offensive Shirt From Its Website," 12 July 2018 Not great—which works as a descriptor for most things about the current state of this rotation outside of J.A. Happ. 19. Emma Baccellieri, SI.com, "The Mariners Firmly Enter Baseball's Top Tier in Our Latest Power Rankings," 2 July 2018 Futuristic and fluid were just two descriptors that characterized the Spring 2019 Menswear runways, which resonated with an inclusive ethos that blurred international borders and genders alike, making closets more sharable than ever. Calin Van Paris, Vogue, "6 Beauty Tricks to Steal from the Mens Runways, From Glitter Bangs to Straight Edge Bobs," 25 June 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of descriptor

1946, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for descriptor

see describe

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about descriptor

Share descriptor

Statistics for descriptor

Last Updated

26 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for descriptor

The first known use of descriptor was in 1946

See more words from the same year

Comments on descriptor

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

WORD OF THE DAY

a private place of worship

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Vocab Quiz

  • the-education-of-achilles-eugne-delacroix
  • Which is a synonym of discomfit?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!