fi·​nal·​ist ˈfī-nə-list How to pronounce finalist (audio)
: a contestant in a competition finals

Examples of finalist in a Sentence

They interviewed all of the finalists before making a decision. a finalist in the tennis tournament
Recent Examples on the Web Students submitted presentations about their projects in the first round, and a select group of finalists submitted videos explaining their ideas in more detail. Isha Trivedi, The Mercury News, 13 Feb. 2024 The semifinalists and finalists advance in Division 1. John Maffei, San Diego Union-Tribune, 11 Feb. 2024 Profiles of the finalists can be found online at Alex Derosier, Twin Cities, 9 Feb. 2024 Members of her team won or were finalists for Pulitzer Prizes three times during her tenure. Meg James, Los Angeles Times, 6 Feb. 2024 Tagovailoa is a finalist for the Associated Press Comeback Player of the Year Award after playing in every game for the first time in his career and leading Miami to the playoffs. Daniel Oyefusi, Miami Herald, 2 Feb. 2024 In June, the usual iteration of the Africa Prize will also go ahead, during which four finalists will battle it out for a £25,000 ($31,600) prize. Nell Lewis, CNN, 1 Feb. 2024 Created by James Beard Award finalist and Top Chef contestant Ashleigh Shanti, this fast-casual eatery opened this month in Asheville’s South Slope District. Taryn White, Travel + Leisure, 30 Jan. 2024 Willis was one of the finalists for Time's Person of the Year and her name was often mentioned as a candidate for higher office. Fulton County Commissioner Bob Ellis, a Republican, requested documents last week to audit Willis' payments to Wade. Democrat-Gazette Staff From Wire Reports,, 27 Jan. 2024 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'finalist.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1898, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of finalist was in 1898

Dictionary Entries Near finalist

Cite this Entry

“Finalist.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition


fi·​nal·​ist ˈfīn-ᵊl-əst How to pronounce finalist (audio)
: a contestant in the finals of a competition

More from Merriam-Webster on finalist

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