hon·​or·​ary | \ ˈä-nə-ˌrer-ē How to pronounce honorary (audio) \

Definition of honorary

1a : having or conferring distinction an honorary engineering society
b : commemorative an honorary plaque
2 : dependent on honor or a keen sense of ethical conduct for fulfillment an honorary obligation
3a : conferred or elected in recognition of achievement or service without the usual prerequisites or obligations an honorary degree an honorary member
b : unpaid, voluntary an honorary chairman

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Other Words from honorary

honorarily \ ˌä-​nə-​ˈrer-​ə-​lē How to pronounce honorarily (audio) \ adverb
honorary noun

Examples of honorary in a Sentence

He was awarded an honorary degree. He's an honorary member of the club. He is the honorary president of the commission.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Armada Area Schools presented her mother with an honorary diploma, according to a Facebook post. Christina Hall, Detroit Free Press, "Town overcame senseless tragedy. Now, it's vying to be the nation's nicest place," 9 July 2019 Bronson Arroyo, another honorary clubbie, was at the ballpark for the presentation. John Fay, Cincinnati.com, "Sonny Gray gives pitching coach Derek Johnson credit for him making the All-Star team," 7 July 2019 The village makes the honorary signs at its own sign shop. Steve Sadin, chicagotribune.com, "Signs of success: Deerfield among towns to honor state champions with roadside recognition," 5 July 2019 Henri Joyeux, a former surgeon and an honorary professor of oncology at the University of Montpellier, has been a leading campaigner against injections containing aluminum. Alex Whiting, CNN, "How France is persuading its citizens to get vaccinated," 3 July 2019 For one glorious day, Grayston became an honorary Rockie. Patrick Saunders, The Denver Post, "Rockies’ Nolan Arenado fulfills Make-A-Wish dream for fellow baseball fanatic," 29 June 2019 The big game comes almost exactly nine years ago — on June 26, 2010 — the royal visited New York City and threw the honorary first pitch at a Mets game in honor of U.K. Armed Forces Day. Maria Pasquini, PEOPLE.com, "Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Share Sweet Throwback Photos in Honor of Armed Forces Day," 29 June 2019 The mayor of the German city of Rottenburg has offered to send a bus to Italy to pick up the migrants, and the Palermo mayor made her and the crew honorary citizens. Washington Post, "Young German captain takes on Italy’s hard-line minister," 28 June 2019 Henri Joyeux, a former surgeon and an honorary professor of oncology at the University of Montpellier, has been a leading campaigner against injections containing aluminium. Alex Whiting, Quartz, "How France is convincing its citizens to get vaccinated," 26 June 2019

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

1606, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for honorary

Latin honorarius, from honor

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Statistics for honorary

Last Updated

13 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for honorary

The first known use of honorary was in 1606

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English Language Learners Definition of honorary

: given as a sign of honor or achievement
: regarded as one of a group although not officially elected or included
: holding a position for which no payment is given : not paid


hon·​or·​ary | \ ˈä-nə-ˌrer-ē How to pronounce honorary (audio) \

Kids Definition of honorary

: given or done as an honor They made him an honorary member of the club.

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More from Merriam-Webster on honorary

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for honorary

Spanish Central: Translation of honorary

Nglish: Translation of honorary for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of honorary for Arabic Speakers

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