grand·​stand·​er ˈgran(d)-ˌstan-dər How to pronounce grandstander (audio)
plural grandstanders
usually disapproving
: one who behaves or performs in a way meant to attract attention and impress onlookers
… is regarded by critics as an inveterate grandstander whose grandiose actions could lead to his excommunication …Richard N. Ostling et al.
In this community that fostered conformity and the work ethic, some considered Campbell flamboyant. Critics said he was a hotdog, a grandstander.Jack Smith
… he was simultaneously applauded by admirers as a hero and reviled by critics as a grandstander.Howard Markel
A brilliant, combative grandstander who clowned in costumes, kissed catfish and crawled through the seal house in Central Park to get publicity … .Robert D. McFadden

Examples of grandstander in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Although those episodes led to some altered policies and the reassignment of officers, Mr. Safir’s default position was to defend the department’s tactics and to dismiss his critics as political grandstanders. Clyde Haberman, New York Times, 12 Sep. 2023 His plans have sparked a lively debate on Cuba’s still wide-open social media platforms, where some have congratulated his bravery while others have dismissed him as a grandstander and questioned his assumption of leadership among a wide range of opposition factions — many of which predate his own. Washington Post, 14 Nov. 2021 His detractors in the Army saw him differently: To them, Fishback was an opportunistic grandstander, a rat who betrayed his own and rode it to fame. C.j. Chivers, New York Times, 21 Feb. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'grandstander.' 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

1896, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of grandstander was in 1896

Dictionary Entries Near grandstander

Cite this Entry

“Grandstander.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 May. 2024.

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