en·​ti·​tle·​ment | \ in-ˈtī-tᵊl-mənt How to pronounce entitlement (audio) , en- \

Definition of entitlement

1a : the state or condition of being entitled : right
b : a right to benefits specified especially by law or contract
2 : belief that one is deserving of or entitled to certain privileges
3 : a government program providing benefits to members of a specified group also : funds supporting or distributed by such a program

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Examples of entitlement in a Sentence

my entitlement to a refund celebrities who have an arrogant sense of entitlement entitlements such as medical aid for the elderly and poor
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Recent Examples on the Web The lack of entitlement and pretense is instructive if you’ve been raised on the major-league game. Paul Daugherty, Cincinnati.com, "Doc's Morning Line: Once the charm of minor league baseball is gone, it's not coming back.," 19 Nov. 2019 But a disagreement over a longstanding fence line soon spirals into an all-out war of taste, class, privilege and entitlement. courant.com, "Community News For The Windham Edition," 8 Nov. 2019 Conservatives will now be subject to the accusation that their privilege and entitlement knows no bounds. Andy Knott, Quartz, "Boris Johnson’s flirtation with populism will have lasting consequences for the UK," 4 Oct. 2019 Sanford is right about entitlements and debt, and right as well to criticize Trump’s record on them. The Editors, National Review, "Let Republican Voters Choose," 12 Sep. 2019 Among western European countries, the Netherlands has the largest gap between men’s and women’s pension entitlements, and the largest in monthly income. The Economist, "Part-time jobs help women stay in paid work," 5 Sep. 2019 Americans have long been known for entitlement and a flair for dramatic heroism. The Atlantic, "The Conversation," 18 Aug. 2019 But experts say Devins' case is less about social media and more about how male entitlement and toxic masculinity continue to fuel violence against girls and women. Alia E. Dastagir, USA TODAY, "Bianca Devins' murder is 'not an Instagram story,' domestic violence expert says," 17 July 2019 That mix of righteous zealotry, entitlement, and ruthless cruelty, with no tempering compassion, proves a disastrous combination when coupled to the mighty power of the Iron Fist, which reflects the character of the wielder. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "Iron Fist’s second Netflix season mostly lives up to its promising trailer," 10 Sep. 2018

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

1782, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Time Traveler for entitlement

Time Traveler

The first known use of entitlement was in 1782

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Statistics for entitlement

Last Updated

28 Nov 2019

Cite this Entry

“Entitlement.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/entitlement?show=0&t=1368221730. Accessed 6 December 2019.

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More Definitions for entitlement


How to pronounce entitlement (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of entitlement

: the condition of having a right to have, do, or get something
: the feeling or belief that you deserve to be given something (such as special privileges)
US : a type of financial help provided by the government for members of a particular group



Legal Definition of entitlement

1 : the state or condition of being entitled : claim evidence of victim's entitlement to money seizedNational Law Journal
2 : a right to benefits that is granted especially by law or contract (as an insurance policy)

Note: Some courts have held that entitlements are a property interest and therefore subject to procedural due process under the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution when denied by federal or state governments.

3 : a government program that provides benefits to members of a group that has a statutory entitlement also : the benefits distributed by such a program

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Comments on entitlement

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


very cautious or careful

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