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giv·​en ˈgi-vən How to pronounce given (audio)
: particular, specified
at a given time
: assumed as actual or hypothetical : granted
given that all are equal before the law
: prone, disposed
given to swearing
: presented as a gift : bestowed without compensation
of an official document : having been executed : dated
: immediately present in experience


2 of 3


: something given
especially : something taken for granted : a basic condition or assumption
It is a given that we are in an age of relentless competition.


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: in view of : considering
Given what she knew about others' lives, how could she complain about her own?Marilyn French

Examples of given in a Sentence

Adjective a quiet man not given to loud expressions of emotion candidates for the quiz show must complete the qualifying test within a given amount of time Noun In our system it is a given that all are equal before the law. it's a given that television viewers are influenced by advertising, even consciously or subconsciously
Recent Examples on the Web
Bing, for its part, went off the rails early on, prompting Microsoft to scale back both its personality and the number of questions users could ask it in a given conversation. Will Oremus, Washington Post, 5 June 2023 At any given moment, 2 million to 10 million Ukrainians have been living in freezing temperatures without electricity. Maham Javaid, Washington Post, 22 Dec. 2022 At any given moment, Yellowstone emits enough geothermal energy (in the form of heat) to get Marty back and forth from 1955. Erik Klemetti, Discover Magazine, 16 June 2022 In the Lanez trial, at any given moment, a follower might believe Lanez’s DNA was conclusively not found on the gun used during the shooting, or that Kylie Jenner kicked Megan out of her house — though there’s no evidence to support either idea. Char Adams, NBC News, 21 Dec. 2022 And no technology was as effective as yelling across any given room. Mary McNamara, Los Angeles Times, 9 Aug. 2022 At any given moment, by some measures, at least 2 million and as many as 10 million Ukrainians are living without electricity, plunged in a cold, enveloping darkness. Ishaan Tharoor, Washington Post, 14 Dec. 2022 In any given moment, Cameron threatens to consume anything and everything within a five-foot radius. Evan Romano, Men's Health, 12 Dec. 2022 This refers to a person’s state of health at any given moment as influenced by their genes and from changes in other molecules, such as proteins, in the body—plus the impact of diet, lifestyle, age, and other factors. David Ewing Duncan, Scientific American, 7 Dec. 2022
The givens are Jimmy Butler, Bam Adebayo, Tyler Herro, Janine Jaquez Jr., Duncan Robinson, Caleb Martin, Kevin Love and Kyle Lowry, as the team’s lone true point guard. Ira Winderman, Sun Sentinel, 16 Jan. 2024 Such an error would skew the data, in which case the BAO measurements and Euclid's weak gravitational lensing results will diverge, and cosmologists will need to rethink their givens. Richard Panek, Scientific American, 14 Nov. 2023 But coach Bev Priestman suggested that growing parity means there are no givens. Anne M. Peterson, The Christian Science Monitor, 20 July 2023 The dangers of sight and occupying open space are just plot-device givens now, while expected resolutions to Part One’s many dangling questions never arrive. Dennis Harvey, Variety, 11 July 2023 There are no givens, and certainly in the U.K., work can be a bit more sporadic. Brian Davids, The Hollywood Reporter, 21 Apr. 2023 Love arrived recognizing there would be no givens, with the Heat’s rotation largely in place two-thirds into the season. Ira Winderman, Sun Sentinel, 18 Apr. 2023 That had coach James Borrego stressing that there would be no givens with his lineups going forward. Ira Winderman,, 30 Nov. 2019 Cassidy has David Krejci, Jake DeBrusk, and Coyle as his three givens on his second and third lines., 12 Oct. 2019 See More

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

Word History



Middle English yiven, given "presented as a gift, freely bestowed," from past participle of given "to give entry 1"

First Known Use


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2


1879, in the meaning defined above


1904, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of given was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near given

Cite this Entry

“Given.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition


1 of 2 adjective
giv·​en ˈgiv-ən How to pronounce given (audio)
: prone sense 1
given to gossiping
: fixed sense 1b, particular
at a given time
: granted as true
given that we are all equal


2 of 2 noun
: something taken for granted : a basic condition or assumption

More from Merriam-Webster on given

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