de·​serv·​ing | \ di-ˈzər-viŋ How to pronounce deserving (audio) \

Definition of deserving

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: desert, merit reward the proud according to their deservings— Charles Kingsley



Definition of deserving (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : having good qualities that deserve praise, support, etc. : meritorious, worthy rewarding deserving workers scholarships for deserving students
2 : appropriately having or being given something specified used with of a proposal deserving of support [=a proposal that deserves support]a criminal deserving of punishment

Other Words from deserving


deservingly adverb
deservingness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for deserving

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Examples of deserving in a Sentence

Adjective He's a very deserving young man. The church provides aid to deserving families.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Smith’s numbers and accolades, to be clear, are gaudy, and deserving of consideration. Josh Newman, The Salt Lake Tribune, 10 June 2022 Hey Hoynsie: Eli Morgan seems to really be maturing as a pitcher and deserving of another turn in the rotation with Aaron Civale out. Paul Hoynes, cleveland, 28 May 2022 But Summer’s catalog is a pop feast deserving of esteem. Melissa Ruggieri, USA TODAY, 17 May 2022 Russian leaders are no less deserving of that title, yet political speech will help bring justice only when it is translated into binding legal opinion. Michael A. Newton, CNN, 15 Mar. 2022 The recipient of that good fortune was Country House, who was 65-to-1 and very much deserving of those odds. Dan Wolken, USA TODAY, 8 May 2022 Both of those situations are unfortunate, and deserving of attention. Molly Parker, ProPublica, 25 Apr. 2022 Alexander Gabuev, a senior fellow at the Carnegie Moscow Center, said the Russian leadership doesn’t see Ukraine, a place once controlled by Moscow, as deserving of rigorous study. Washington Post, 11 Apr. 2022 Operation Connect believes that veterans are future leaders and model citizens, will enrich our local economy for years to come, and are a community asset deserving of investment. Laura Groch, San Diego Union-Tribune, 27 Mar. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Some years, though, are more deserving than others. Bryce Millercolumnist, San Diego Union-Tribune, 17 June 2022 What people dream of, gala-wise, is beauty, admiring and being admired, charming and being charmed, being selected as special and deserving. New York Times, 18 May 2022 Some parents have publicly suggested that students earning admission with lower GPAs are less deserving of the seats than applicants with higher GPAs who were rejected from the exam schools., 19 May 2021 Every year a $1000 scholarship is given to a deserving high school senior or college student planning on a career in the environmental sciences. Shirley Macfarland, cleveland, 26 May 2022 The Original Kolache Shoppe, of course, is a very deserving addition, at number 65. Emma Balter, Chron, 24 May 2022 In Lowe—and in Dash’s striking, cinematic staging of her gowns in the Renaissance Revival Room—there couldn’t be a designer more deserving to finally get their flowers. Liam Hess, Vogue, 27 Apr. 2022 The Emerald Isle is also the most successful country to compete at the (in)famous Eurovision Song Contest, winning the event a table-topping seven times–a truly deserving champion of Heardle. Matt Gardner, Forbes, 22 Apr. 2022 Go ahead, the (finale) stage is here, and five deserving queens — Angeria Paris VanMicheals, Bosco, Daya Betty, Lady Camden, and Willow Pill — are prepared to claim their $150,000 check (check!) and the most coveted crown in the world. Joey Nolfi,, 21 Apr. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of deserving


14th century, in the meaning defined above


1549, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of deserving was in the 14th century

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Dictionary Entries Near deserving

deservedly so



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Last Updated

18 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Deserving.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Jul. 2022.

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More Definitions for deserving


de·​serv·​ing | \ di-ˈzər-viŋ How to pronounce deserving (audio) \

Kids Definition of deserving

: worthy sense 2 The scholarship will go to a deserving student.

More from Merriam-Webster on deserving

Nglish: Translation of deserving for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of deserving for Arabic Speakers


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