fi·​nal | \ ˈfī-nᵊl How to pronounce final (audio) \

Definition of final

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : not to be altered or undone all sales are final
b : of or relating to a concluding court action or proceeding final decree
2 : coming at the end : being the last in a series, process, or progress the final chapter final exams
3 : of or relating to the ultimate purpose or result of a process our final goal the final product



Definition of final (Entry 2 of 2)

: something that is final: such as
a : a deciding match, game, heat, or trial usually used in plural
b : the last examination in a course often used in plural

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Choose the Right Synonym for final


last, final, terminal, ultimate mean following all others (as in time, order, or importance). last applies to something that comes at the end of a series but does not always imply that the series is completed or stopped. last page of a book last news we had of him final applies to that which definitely closes a series, process, or progress. final day of school terminal may indicate a limit of extension, growth, or development. terminal phase of a disease ultimate implies the last degree or stage of a long process beyond which further progress or change is impossible. the ultimate collapse of the system

Examples of final in a Sentence


the final act of the play They won their final four games. in the final minutes of the game Our last stop was Bangkok, but our final destination is Tokyo. The plans are undergoing final review. What was the final score? The final product was not what we had expected.


He failed his history finals. He failed his history final.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

The documentary, Game of Thrones: The Last Watch, gives fans an inside look at the making of the show's eighth and final season, including intimate moments with the cast on set. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Emilia Clarke's Last Day on Game of Thrones Has Fans Emotionally Wrecked," 27 May 2019 Irregular periods Vaginal dryness Hot flashes Chills Night sweats Sleep problems Mood changes Weight gain Thinning hair Dry skin Loss of breast fullness These symptoms can also continue for several years after a woman’s final period. Colleen Stinchcombe, Woman's Day, "What Age Does Menopause Start? Here’s How to Spot the First Signs," 27 May 2019 The fifth and final season of Fuller House is officially underway without Aunt Becky, a.k.a. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "'Fuller House' Star Candace Cameron Bure Gets Emotional at First Reading Sans Lori Loughlin," 24 May 2019 The Securities and Exchange Commission plans to vote on a final rule on June 5, the agency said on Thursday. Dave Michaels, WSJ, "Stockbrokers Face New Rules on Disclosing Conflicts of Interest," 23 May 2019 Watch Oyelowo reflect on Javert in the clip up top and see how things end up for his character in the final episode of Les Misérables, which airs this Sunday at 9 p.m. eastern. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "Ahead of the Les Misérables Finale, Lily Collins and David Oyelowo Reflect on the Series," 18 May 2019 Actor Kit Harington has revealed an eye-watering story from the final days of filming the latest season of Game of Thrones—the eighth and final series which kicked off with a huge premiere episode on Sunday night. Lucy Wood, Marie Claire, "Kit Harington Almost Lost a Testicle While Filming 'Game of Thrones'," 16 Apr. 2019 Ralph Lauren wrote the introduction, while the final chapter was written by Bentley's chairman and CEO and focuses on the future of the brand. Daniel Golson, Car and Driver, "Bentley's Coffee-Table Book Costs Over $250,000 and Is Covered in Diamonds," 17 May 2019 With the final episode of the star's hit show, Game of Thrones coming to an epic end this Sunday night, let Turner's fierce dramatic liner stand proof that Sansa’s ready for the iron throne. Jenna Rennert, Vogue, "Sophie Turner's Cool-Girl Makeup Is Straight Out of Winterfell," 15 May 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Rookie coach John Legend has one artist in the finals, Maelyn Jarmon, and Blake Shelton's team, Dexter Roberts, Andrew Sevener, and Gyth Rigdon make up the other three hopefuls. Jennifer Aldrich, Country Living, "Everything You Need to Know About 'The Voice' Finalist Dexter Roberts," 20 May 2019 The royal sat in the royal box at Wimbledon (along with her sister-in-law Kate Middleton) to cheer Willams on in the finals. Abby Gardner, Glamour, "Serena Williams On Texting With Royal Bestie Meghan Markle: 'We've Been Relying On Each Other a Lot Lately'," 23 Sep. 2018 The actress attended the tennis games to watch Novak Djokovic compete against Juan Martín del Potro in the finals, and frankly I'm invested in Meryl being so invested. Rachel Epstein, Marie Claire, "Meryl Streep's Intense U.S. Open Reactions Inevitably Turn Into Hilarious Memes," 10 Sep. 2018 France clinched its second FIFA World Cup title after beating Croatia 4-2 in the finals on Sunday. Fox News, "France beats Croatia 4-2 to clinch 2nd FIFA World Cup title," 15 July 2018 The Brazilian number one endured a poor World Cup, where his side were defeated in the quarter finals to Roberto Martinez's Belgian side., "Roma Linked With AC Milan Forward Suso as Rossoneri Look to Ease Financial Worries," 13 July 2018 Along the way, 4S Ranch (4-2) beat Escondido American 18-4, Poway American 13-3 and Encinitas 7-0 before losing to eventual champion Rancho Santa Fe 11-5 and beating Del Mar American 6-5 to earn a berth in the finals. Terry Monahan, Pomerado News, "Poway comes close to Little League district title," 12 July 2018 The winner of that matchup will take on the winner of Tuesday’s Belgium-France game in the finals. Michelle R. Martinelli, For The Win, "England's Harry Maguire responds to fan who got a tattoo of his face," 10 July 2018 As of Thursday, July 5, though, the more immediate aim was a slot in the finals. Lily Janiak,, "The long tail of ShortLived VII, audience-judged theater competition at PianoFight in SF," 7 July 2018

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1609, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for final


Middle English, "pertaining to an end or conclusion, effecting a close, ultimate, conclusive," borrowed from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French, borrowed from Medieval Latin fīnālis "last, at the end, ultimate," going back to Latin, "of boundaries," from fīnis "boundary, limit, terminal point, ending" (of uncertain origin) + -ālis -al entry 1

Note: According to an older hypothesis, fīnis goes back to *fig-sn-is, a derivative from the base of fīgere "to drive in, insert, fasten" (see fix entry 1), assuming that the word originally referred to some sort of boundary marker fixed to a tree or driven into the ground. A more recent suggestion sees fīnis going back to *bhiH-n-i, a derivative of an Indo-European verbal base *bhei̯H- "strike, break," seen also in an o-grade derivative *bhoi̯H-n-o-, whence Germanic *baina- "bone" and "straight" (in Old Norse beinn "straight"; (see bone entry 1); in this case fīnis would have referred originally to an upright branch or stake used to mark boundaries. Both hypotheses are in the end speculative, as the semantic prehistory of fīnis in Latin is unknown.


derivative of final entry 1

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Learn More about final

Statistics for final

Last Updated

5 Jun 2019

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Time Traveler for final

The first known use of final was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for final



English Language Learners Definition of final

: the last competition (such as a game or race) or set of competitions in a series
: the examinations that happen at the end of a class, term, or course of study
US : an examination at the end of a class


fi·​nal | \ ˈfī-nᵊl How to pronounce final (audio) \

Kids Definition of final

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : coming or happening at the end final exams
2 : not to be changed The decision of the judges is final.

Other Words from final

finally adverb



Kids Definition of final (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the last match or game of a tournament
2 : a final examination in a course



Legal Definition of final

1 : ending a court action or proceeding leaving nothing further to be determined by the court or to be done except execution of the judgment but not precluding appeal used of an order, decision, judgment, decree, determination, or sentence — see also finality, final judgment rule — compare interlocutory
2 : being a decision that precludes the right to appeal or to continue a case in any other court upon the merits: as
a : being a decision for which availability of appeal has been exhausted and concerning which a writ of certiorari has been denied or the time to petition for certiorari has expired
b : being a decision of the Supreme Court of the U.S. that terminates the litigation between parties on the merits and leaves nothing for the lower court to do in case of an affirmance except to execute the judgment
3 : being the last in a series, process, or progress a final payment

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More from Merriam-Webster on final

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with final

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for final

Spanish Central: Translation of final

Nglish: Translation of final for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of final for Arabic Speakers

Comments on final

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


incapable of being surmounted or overcome

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