es·​tab·​lish·​ment | \ i-ˈsta-blish-mənt How to pronounce establishment (audio) \

Definition of establishment

1 : something established: such as
a : a settled arrangement especially : a code of laws
c : a permanent civil or military organization
d : a place of business or residence with its furnishings and staff
e : a public or private institution
2 : an established order of society: such as
a often capitalized : a group of social, economic, and political leaders who form a ruling class (as of a nation)
b often capitalized : a controlling group the literary establishment
3a : the act of establishing
b : the state of being established

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Synonyms for establishment


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Examples of establishment in a Sentence

the establishment of a business the establishment of a scientific fact His novels were disliked by the literary establishment.
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Recent Examples on the Web Still, Brown, a protégé of Fudge, has garnered most of the establishment backing. Robert Higgs, cleveland, "Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson endorses Nina Turner for 11th District Congressional election," 31 Mar. 2021 Five years ago, Shabaab was a group of disaffected young Muslims who had fallen out with Mozambique's Islamic establishment. Tim Lister And Vasco Cotovio, CNN, "The brutal attacks in Mozambique are a 'game-changer' and imperil a whole country's financial future," 30 Mar. 2021 In 1981, Rivera, who was 16 years old at the time, walked into the Queens, New York, bar with the intention of robbing the establishment and shot Walsh in the shoulder after the officer identified himself as law enforcement. Andrew Mark Miller, Washington Examiner, "Man convicted of executing NYPD officer assigned to panel tasked with reforming New York police," 30 Mar. 2021 And like them he was unfairly reduced to a mere spinner of yarns within the academic-literary establishment. Kyle Smith, National Review, "The Underappreciated Genius of Larry McMurtry," 28 Mar. 2021 Upon arriving at the scene, officers found numerous shots had been fired in the establishment's parking lot, injuring three men, according to a release. Quinlan Bentley, The Enquirer, "Police: 1 killed, 2 injured in shooting outside Middletown bar," 28 Mar. 2021 Investors are now betting that these two firms, together with Stripe and Adyen (which is Dutch), form a quartet that can take on America’s stodgy financial establishment. The Economist, "Digital commerce Fintech comes to America at last," 27 Mar. 2021 Either the mob ran the establishment or bar owners would pay for protection to avoid being raided. NBC News, "Julius' Bar, site of historic gay 'sip-in,' threatened by pandemic," 27 Mar. 2021 No response: necessary Walter always played Lucille's let-them-eat-cake condescension perfectly, and her trip to a less-than establishment named Klimpy's delivered the goods of class conflict and fish-out-of-water comedy. Dan Snierson,, "Jessica Walter's best Arrested Development moments as Lucille Bluth," 26 Mar. 2021

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for establishment

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The first known use of establishment was in the 15th century

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Statistics for establishment

Last Updated

3 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Establishment.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 10 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for establishment



English Language Learners Definition of establishment

: a place or organization where people live or do business
: the act of starting something that will last for a long time
: the act of causing something or someone to be widely known and accepted


es·​tab·​lish·​ment | \ i-ˈsta-blish-mənt How to pronounce establishment (audio) \

Kids Definition of establishment

1 : the act of founding or of proving
2 : a place where people live or do business



Legal Definition of establishment

1 : something established: as
a : a church recognized by law as the official church of a nation or state and supported by civil authority
b : a permanent civil or military organization
c : a place of residence or especially business with its furnishings and staff
2a : an act of establishing
b : the state of being established

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