ex·​clu·​sive | \ ik-ˈsklü-siv How to pronounce exclusive (audio) , -ziv \

Definition of exclusive

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : excluding or having power to exclude
b : limiting or limited to possession, control, or use by a single individual or group
2a : excluding others from participation
b : snobbishly aloof
3a : accepting or soliciting only a socially restricted patronage (as of the upper class)
c : restricted in distribution, use, or appeal because of expense
4a : single, sole exclusive jurisdiction
b : whole, undivided his exclusive attention



Definition of exclusive (Entry 2 of 2)

: something exclusive: such as
a : a news story at first released to or reported by only one source
b : an exclusive right (as to sell a particular product in a certain area)

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from exclusive


exclusiveness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for exclusive

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Did You Know?

In words such as expel, export, and exclusive, the prefix ex- means "out of, outside". Thus, to exclude means basically to close the door in order to keep someone or something out. When the word appears in an advertisement, it's often making an appeal to snobs. An "exclusive" offer is supposedly made to only a few people; not so many years ago, "exclusive" housing developments excluded those of a certain race or color. If a product is being sold exclusively by one store, you won't be able to find it anywhere else. When a newspaper or news show has an exclusive, it's a story that no one else has yet reported. Exclusive's antonym is inclusive; an inclusive policy, an inclusive church, or an inclusive approach is one that aims to include as many people as possible.

Examples of exclusive in a Sentence

Adjective He belongs to an exclusive club. She attended an exclusive private school. one of the city's most exclusive restaurants They gave their exclusive attention to the job.
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The network boasts exclusive rights in India to air popular cartoon shows such as Peppa Pig and Paw Patrol, and also Indian ones such as Chhotta Bheem. Sangeeta Tanwar, Quartz India, "India’s leading kids entertainment network unleashes Peppa Pig and Paw Patrol to win OTT war," 26 Nov. 2019 Lots more to 'Reveal' in the coming weeks, but head to my bio link for our exclusive interview with @people! Isabel Garcia, House Beautiful, "The Property Brothers Just Shared Their New Magazine’s Title and Tagline," 20 Nov. 2019 Fair use is a limited exception to the copyright holder’s exclusive rights for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, or research. Ephrat Livni, Quartz, "US Supreme Court holds innovation in the balance in Google v Oracle," 20 Nov. 2019 In order to get the exclusive interview, Diana worked with Bashir to keep their interview a secret from Buckingham Palace. Morgan Evans, Good Housekeeping, "A Timeline of Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles' Royal Romance," 15 Nov. 2019 As pointed as the image might seem, BiP, in an exclusive interview with the San Francisco Chronicle, describes the mural as full of dualities. Ryan Kost, SFChronicle.com, "SF artist BiP speaks out on police brutality with Hayes Valley mural," 15 Nov. 2019 In late 2018, Catalyst Pharmaceuticals (CPRX) was granted exclusive marketing rights to sell its new drug, called Firdapse, after the Food and Drug Administration approved the medicine. Ed Silverman, STAT, "A drug maker courted controversy when it shut out a family-run rival. Now some patients say the medicine isn’t working," 15 Nov. 2019 The National Women’s Soccer League filed a trademark application last week with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office seeking exclusive rights to use Proof Louisville FC on drinkware, clothing, keychains, backpacks, lip balm and other merchandise. Tim Sullivan, The Courier-Journal, "Louisville's NWSL expansion team has a name, and it's a nod to Kentucky's favorite spirit," 12 Nov. 2019 The network will also air a preview show hosted by Apple on Thursday at 7 p.m. featuring exclusive interviews with coach Geno Auriemma and key players, as well as analysis from Culmo and Wolters. Alexa Philippou, courant.com, "SNY announces broadcast team for 2019-20 UConn women’s basketball season," 5 Nov. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun In a new video exclusive to Seventeen, EJ (Matt Cornett) tries to make things right again with Nini (Olivia Rodrigo) and decides that the best way to do so would be through an original song. Tamara Fuentes, Seventeen, "Exclusive: E.J. Tries to Get Back on Nini's Good Side with New Original Song in "High School Musical: The Musical: The Series"," 20 Nov. 2019 Both those games started as Bethesda.net exclusives on PC, then migrated to Steam after the hype died down. Hayden Dingman, PCWorld, "Fallout 76 abandons Steam for Bethesda's own launcher," 7 Aug. 2018 The online-exclusive, limited edition teddy bears don't come with eggnog or a Red Ryder BB gun. Sarah Brookbank, Cincinnati.com, "Build-A-Bear has Christmas classics this year, including Cousin Eddie and Ralphie bears," 11 Nov. 2019 Thanks to a new exclusive from CNN, royal watchers are treated to a rare (but brief) interview with the Duchess of Cambridge on camera. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Duchess Kate Just Gave a Rare TV Interview to Talk About the Royal Tour of Pakistan," 18 Oct. 2019 There are fewer record store-only exclusives, but still lots to be had. Brian Ries, CNN, "Record Store Day announces exclusive vinyl to pick up on Black Friday," 8 Oct. 2019 And just like the Galaxy S10 5G, the Galaxy Note 10 Plus 5G will start off as a Verizon exclusive in the United States. Chris Welch, The Verge, "Samsung’s Galaxy Note 10 Plus 5G will start at $1,300," 7 Aug. 2019 Believe Beauty launched as a Dollar General exclusive back in March to little fanfare. Marci Robin, Allure, "Dollar General’s New Under-$5 Makeup Line Is Going Viral," 1 Aug. 2019 But Swift seems to have made nice with the streaming after her previous history of withholding her albums from its platform, releasing a second video for her Reputation track Delicate on Friday as a Spotify exclusive. Maeve Mcdermott, USA TODAY, "Taylor Swift's one-take 'Delicate' video isn't necessary, but it's nice," 30 Mar. 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of exclusive


1515, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


15th century, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about exclusive

Time Traveler for exclusive

Time Traveler

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

See more words from the same century

Statistics for exclusive

Last Updated

6 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Exclusive.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/exclusive?pronunciation&lang=en_us&dir=e&file=exclus04. Accessed 9 December 2019.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for exclusive


How to pronounce exclusive (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of exclusive

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: not shared : available to only one person or group
: only allowing in people from a high social class
: available to only a few people because of high cost



English Language Learners Definition of exclusive (Entry 2 of 2)

: a news story that appears in only one newspaper or that is broadcast by only one television or radio station


ex·​clu·​sive | \ ik-ˈsklü-siv How to pronounce exclusive (audio) , -ziv \

Kids Definition of exclusive

1 : excluding or trying to exclude others an exclusive neighborhood
2 : sole entry 4 sense 2 Residents have exclusive use of the beach.
3 : entire, complete Please give me your exclusive attention.

Other Words from exclusive

exclusively adverb



Legal Definition of exclusive

1a : excluding or having power to exclude others exclusive right to their respective writings and discoveriesU.S. Constitution art. I
b : being independent from or not shared by others : sole exclusive control exclusive use
2 : limiting or limited to possession, ownership, or use by a single individual or group an exclusive lease

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on exclusive

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


contradictory or incongruous words

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Semantic Drift Quiz

  • a twisty river
  • Which of the following was once a synonym for fun?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Add Diction

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!