en·ti·ty | \ˈen-tə-tē, ˈe-nə-\
plural entities

Definition of entity 

1a : being, existence especially : independent, separate, or self-contained existence

b : the existence of a thing as contrasted with its attributes

2 : something that has separate and distinct existence and objective or conceptual reality

3 : an organization (such as a business or governmental unit) that has an identity separate from those of its members

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Examples of entity in a Sentence

One division of the company was broken off as a separate entity. the question of whether extrasensory perception will ever be a scientifically recognized entity

Recent Examples on the Web

The bill passed the House this year but died in the Senate after a heated debate centered on changes to the program and whether the fund should be opened up to other entities offering telephone and broadband service. Ryan Blethen, The Seattle Times, "Rural telecom companies go beyond offering telephone and broadband," 24 June 2018 The responsibility for ensuring food safety, now divided between the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), would fall to a new entity within USDA, a Federal Food Safety Agency. Insider Staff Report, Science | AAAS, "Trump’s plan to reshuffle government strikes familiar notes," 21 June 2018 Including the Citibank settlement, the attorneys general have collected a total of $420 million in payments from the three banks, almost all of which will be distributed to state and local government entities and not-for-profits. Erin Arvedlund, Philly.com, "AG Shapiro: Pa. investors get back money from interest-rate rigging," 19 June 2018 The Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles has a contract with Unisoft Communications to provide drivers’ motorist history to those entities. Gray Rohrer, OrlandoSentinel.com, "FDLE probes alleged misuse of driver license info," 15 June 2018 Lawmakers were quick to call into question Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg's recent testimony on Capitol Hill, claiming the tech titan had misled members of Congress on the company's practice of providing data to third-party entities. CBS News, "Facebook under scrutiny over data sharing after Times report," 4 June 2018 The only thing Giuliani’s narrative lacked was an express reference to one or more exempt entities providing nondisclosure and a tax deduction. Sean Illing, Vox, "Did Rudy Giuliani just get Trump in legal trouble? I asked 11 legal experts.," 3 May 2018 In May 2016, Common Council members were told the facility would be a place where paper would be shredded, then mulched and sold to entities where it could be turned into energy sources. Gregory Tejeda, Post-Tribune, "Gary recycling facility gets 6-month permit extension; protests continue," 12 July 2018 The only entities to have conducted controlled landings on the Moon are the governments of the former Soviet Union, the United States, and China. Lucas Laursen, Fortune, "Israel's First Moon Mission Is Planned and a SpaceX Falcon 9 Rocket Will Take It," 11 July 2018

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

1596, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for entity

Medieval Latin entitas, from Latin ent-, ens existing thing, from coined present participle of esse to be — more at is

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Statistics for entity

Last Updated

18 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for entity

The first known use of entity was in 1596

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English Language Learners Definition of entity

: something that exists by itself : something that is separate from other things


en·ti·ty | \ˈen(t)-ət-ē \
plural entities

Medical Definition of entity 

: something (as a disease or condition) that has separate and distinct existence and objective or conceptual reality whether the common cold is an entity has been debatedYear Book of Medicine


en·ti·ty | \ˈen-ti-tē \
plural entities

Legal Definition of entity 

: an organization (as a business or governmental unit) that has a legal identity which is separate from those of its members — see also alter ego, instrumentality, juridical person, legal person, pierce

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