fa·​vor·​ite | \ ˈfā-v(ə-)rət How to pronounce favorite (audio) , ˈfā-vərt, chiefly dialectal ˈfā-və-ˌrīt\

Definition of favorite

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : one that is treated or regarded with special favor or liking That song is my favorite. especially : a person who is specially loved, trusted, or provided with favors by someone of high rank or authority The king granted the land to two of his favorites.
2 : a competitor judged most likely to win Which horse is the favorite in this race?



Definition of favorite (Entry 2 of 2)

: constituting a favorite his favorite daughter especially : markedly popular the country's favorite sport

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Synonyms & Antonyms for favorite

Synonyms: Noun

darling, fave, minion, pet, preference, speed

Synonyms: Adjective

beloved, cherished, darling, dear, fair-haired, favored, fond, loved, pet, precious, special, sweet, white-headed

Antonyms: Adjective


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Examples of favorite in a Sentence


Of all his books, do you have a favorite? That movie is my favorite. That movie is a great favorite with audiences everywhere.


that teacher claims not to have any favorite students, although many in the class would disagree mint chocolate chip is my favorite flavor of ice cream
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Many Google devices are on sale, but these are our favorites. Jeffrey Van Camp, WIRED, "Our Favorite Google and Nest Devices Are on Sale Right Now," 11 July 2019 The Camera Club has cards and prints of their original photos, so take home your favorites. baltimoresun.com/maryland/carroll, "Coming Attractions: Peter Yarrow to open 2019-20 season at Carroll Arts Center," 11 July 2019 Among his current favorites is the pottery from Tonalá in Jalisco. Washington Post, "Gallery in central Mexico displays a trove of folk art," 10 July 2019 Reporters tried food at all the booths (except the pop-ups, which change each day, except Seafood City, which returns Thursday, and Caffe Gelato Soiree, which still was not open by mid-afternoon), and picked their favorites. Natalie Wade, chicagotribune.com, "What to eat at Taste of Chicago: We tried every booth to recommend our favorites," 9 July 2019 One of my favorites is the Tree Hugger with garlic infused olive oil, brie cheese and candied walnuts. Nancy Ngo, Twin Cities, "8 questions with QuickFire Pizza’s Ryan Lettner: How DO you get a giant pizza oven into a space?," 9 July 2019 Sulc works his store alongside his wife, Jennifer, and their 6-year-old daughter, Emma, who points to the pink and purple fireworks as her favorites. Emma Ruby, Dallas News, "Firecrackers, family and funky hair: The folks behind North Texas' fireworks stands," 3 July 2019 Check out our 12 favorites from coast to coast, perfect for a solo or group journey. Sam Silverman, Health.com, "The 12 Best Bike Trails of 2019 for Summer Activities," 3 July 2019 There are tons of subliminal messages throughout (inspiring phrases literally pop up for a millisecond during the video), but my personal favorite comes in the form of fashion. Kelsey Stiegman, Seventeen, "Miley Cyrus' Vagina Spikes in "Mother's Daughter" Music Video Send a Very Important Message to Donald Trump," 2 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Kiss came out with the Jaguars mascot and cheerleaders and was a huge crowd favorite. Jay Reddick, orlandosentinel.com, "AEW Fight for the Fallen: Young Bucks defeat Rhodes brothers in emotional main event," 14 July 2019 ThinkTank, founded last year, was a favorite among entrepreneurs for its generous model. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Tech scene jumps to save ‘homeless’ startups after ThinkTank’s abrupt closure," 11 July 2019 Connolly should start at one of the two inside spots, with junior-college transfer Myles Tapusoa the favorite to open at the other. Michael Lev, azcentral, "Counting down the most valuable Arizona Wildcats for 2019 football season," 9 July 2019 Although not a favorite to win the Mountain West Conference, the Falcons are projected by national publications to get back into a bowl. Brian Howell, The Denver Post, "CU Buffs football opponent preview: Air Force aiming to end two-year bowl drought," 9 July 2019 Many expect Miami to be the favorite to win the four-game, four-city tournament that also features teams from New York and Chicago. Eric Sondheimer, latimes.com, "Gavino Rosales to start on the mound for City Section all-stars," 7 July 2019 And just like that, the Clippers became the favorite to win next year’s title. Bruce Jenkins, SFChronicle.com, "Kawhi Leonard, Paul George and Clippers shock the West: Here’s the fallout," 6 July 2019 Elephant’s Breath is always a favorite among our fans. Elizabeth Mayhew, Twin Cities, "Surfboard Yellow, Gentleman’s Gray, Mizzle: How do paint companies name their hues?," 6 July 2019 Despite facing skepticism within his own party, the 51-year-old Mitsotakis has built a huge lead in opinion polls spanning back three years and is the strong favorite to win Sunday. Washington Post, "Greece: A look at the main candidates in Sunday’s election," 5 July 2019

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


1583, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1692, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for favorite

Noun and Adjective

Italian favorito, past participle of favorire to favor, from favore favor, from Latin favor

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Statistics for favorite

Last Updated

15 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for favorite

The first known use of favorite was in 1583

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More Definitions for favorite



English Language Learners Definition of favorite

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a person or a thing that is liked more than others : a favorite person or thing
: a person, team, etc., that is considered most likely to win



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

: most liked


fa·​vor·​ite | \ ˈfā-və-rət How to pronounce favorite (audio) , ˈfāv-rət\

Kids Definition of favorite

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a person or a thing that is liked more than others



Kids Definition of favorite (Entry 2 of 2)

: most liked Pizza is my favorite food.

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More from Merriam-Webster on favorite

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for favorite

Spanish Central: Translation of favorite

Nglish: Translation of favorite for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of favorite for Arabic Speakers

Comments on favorite

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


appealing forcibly to the mind or reason

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