enu·​mer·​ate | \ i-ˈn(y)ü-mə-ˌrāt How to pronounce enumerate (audio) \
enumerated; enumerating

Definition of enumerate

transitive verb

1 : to ascertain the number of : count
2 : to specify one after another : list

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Other Words from enumerate

enumerative \ i-​ˈn(y)ü-​mə-​ˌrā-​tiv How to pronounce enumerative (audio) , -​ˈn(y)üm-​rə-​ , -​ˈn(y)ü-​mə-​rə-​ \ adjective

The Meaning of Enumerate Gets Specific

In a census year, the U.S. government attempts to enumerate every single citizen of the country—a task that, even in the modern era of technology, isn't truly possible. Medical tests often require the enumeration of bacteria, viruses, or other organisms to determine the progress of a disease or the effectiveness of a medication. Despite its numer- root, you don't have to use numbers when enumerating. For students of government and law, the "enumerated powers" are the specific responsibilities of the Congress, as listed in the U.S. Constitution; these are the only powers that Congress has, a fact that the Tenth Amendment makes even more clearly.

Examples of enumerate in a Sentence

Let me enumerate my reasons for doing this. I proceeded to enumerate the reasons why I would be justified in filing a lawsuit for negligence.
Recent Examples on the Web The Postal Service is so foundational to the country that it is enumerated in the Constitution. Author: Jacob Bogage, Anchorage Daily News, "White House rejects bailout for U.S. Postal Service battered by coronavirus," 12 Apr. 2020 Postal services are specifically enumerated in theConstitution (Article I). Michael Hiltzik, Los Angeles Times, "Column: Trump again attacks the U.S. Postal Service with lies," 9 Apr. 2020 Schiff rebutted Dershowitz's argument that only criminal acts are impeachable offenses, specifically bribery, which is enumerated in the Constitution as an example of high crimes and misdemeanors. NBC News, "Schiff rebuts Dershowitz's argument: 'There is a crime here of bribery or extortion'," 30 Jan. 2020 Michael Pollan, ofOmnivore’s Dilemma fame, has published a bestselling book enumerating their psychic benefits. John Semley, The New Republic, "Turn On, Tune In, Cash In," 27 Apr. 2020 Practically speaking, modern census takers lack the punitive powers of their classical predecessors, the powerful censors of the Roman Republic (509–27 BCE) who enumerated the population and stratified it by class. Andrew Whitby, Time, "Filling Out a Census Has Always Been a Political Act," 17 Apr. 2020 Natalie Shenker, a breast-milk researcher at Imperial College London, enumerated some examples: Antibodies, which transfer immunity against pathogens from mother to baby, come from the mother’s own immune cells in her blood. Sarah Zhang, The Atlantic, "A Bold and Controversial Idea for Making Breast Milk," 27 Feb. 2020 However, most felt measures enumerated in the $2 billion stimulus plan approved by Congress last year could blunt the force of the coronavirus economic shutdown. William Thornton | Wthornton@al.com, al, "Small businesses clamor for Paycheck Protection Program loans," 4 Apr. 2020 After successfully gaining access to a new Wi-Fi network, the infected device enumerates all non-hidden devices that are connected to it. Dan Goodin, Ars Technica, "One of the most destructive botnets can now spread to nearby Wi-Fi networks," 11 Feb. 2020

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

1616, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for enumerate

Latin enumeratus, past participle of enumerare, from e- + numerare to count, from numerus number

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Time Traveler for enumerate

Time Traveler

The first known use of enumerate was in 1616

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Statistics for enumerate

Last Updated

17 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Enumerate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/enumerate. Accessed 2 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for enumerate


How to pronounce enumerate (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of enumerate

: to name (things) one after another in a list


enu·​mer·​ate | \ i-ˈnü-mə-ˌrāt How to pronounce enumerate (audio) , -ˈnyü- \
enumerated; enumerating

Kids Definition of enumerate

2 : to name one after another : list

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Comments on enumerate

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