in·​au·​gu·​ral | \ i-ˈnȯ-gyə-rəl How to pronounce inaugural (audio) , -g(ə-)rəl\

Definition of inaugural

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : of or relating to an inauguration
2 : marking a beginning : first in a projected series



Definition of inaugural (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an inaugural address

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Examples of inaugural in a Sentence


They attended the inaugural ball. the inaugural event in the city's week long festival honoring the sailing ships


attended the inaugurals of the city's last three mayors
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Today, the royal newlyweds attended the inaugural Coach Core awards at Loughborough University. Maggie Maloney, Town & Country, "Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Had a Cute PDA Moment at the Coach Core Awards," 24 Sep. 2018 The inaugural excellence award will be bestowed at the high school’s homecoming football game on Sept. 21. Janine Puhak, Fox News, "Michigan high school replaces Homecoming Queen with 'excellence award'," 19 Sep. 2018 Kim Kardashian West, Kanye’s wife, sat front and center, waiting to receive the inaugural Influencer Award. Matthew Schneier, New York Times, "Inside the CFDA Awards, With Issa Rae, Kim Kardashian West and Naomi Campbell," 5 June 2018 Monty Williams was the winner of the inaugural award in 2017. Jeff Zillgitt, USA TODAY, "NBA Hall of Famer Dikembe Mutombo wins Sager Strong Award for humanitarian work in Congo," 22 May 2018 While in Cannes this week, Travolta will be also be hosting a 40th anniversary screening of Grease on the beach and accepting Variety’s inaugural Cinema Icon award. Julie Miller, HWD, "John Travolta on Going Gangster for Gotti with Wife Kelly Preston," 15 May 2018 Pender will pick up the inaugural Lifetime Achievement Award. Jeff Piorkowski/special To,, "A curling gold medal for Shaker team; University Hts. parade happenings; more: Press Run," 11 May 2018 Former Texas Longhorns football coach Mack Brown, who won the inaugural award in 2012, presented the award to Patterson during the banquet. Stefan Stevenson, star-telegram, "Gary Patterson earns his latest award for work off the field | Fort Worth Star-Telegram," 7 May 2018 Leonardo DiCaprio presented the auteur with the inaugural Robert Osborne Award in Hollywood on Thursday night. Ani Mosinyan, The Hollywood Reporter, "Martin Scorsese Honored at TCM Classic Film Festival Opening Night," 27 Apr. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The hoopla isn't reserved just for giant cruise ship inaugurals. Rosemary Mcclure,, "You can be part of their maiden voyages," 7 May 2018 In less than two weeks, Trump has delivered one of the most divisive inaugurals in the history of the country and spread blatant lies from the Oval Office. Yascha Mounk, Slate Magazine, "Democracy Is Holding Up, for Now," 2 Feb. 2017 Presidential invocations to unity have been a staple of inaugurals for centuries. Ruth Marcus, The Denver Post, "President Trump’s clenched-fist inaugural address," 23 Jan. 2017 Politicians, preparing for inaugurals, scurry for their histories. Benjamin Wallace-wells, The New Yorker, "A Dark Inaugural," 20 Jan. 2017 Unlike Washington, many presidents have stuffed their inaugurals with platitudes. Thomas V. Dibacco, WSJ, "An Inaugural Speech Like No Other?," 18 Jan. 2017 Ms. Leiber said first ladies carried her purses to their husbands’ inaugurals, including Mamie Eisenhower, Lady Bird Johnson, Nancy Reagan, Barbara Bush, Hillary Clinton and Laura Bush. Warren Strugatch, New York Times, "Judith and Gerson Leiber: 70 Years of Marriage, Fashion and Art," 6 Jan. 2017

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


1689, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1832, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for inaugural

Last Updated

13 May 2019

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Time Traveler for inaugural

The first known use of inaugural was in 1689

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More Definitions for inaugural



English Language Learners Definition of inaugural

: happening as part of an official ceremony or celebration when someone (such as a newly elected official) begins an important job : happening as part of an inauguration
: happening as the first one in a series of similar events


in·​au·​gu·​ral | \ i-ˈnȯ-gyə-rəl How to pronounce inaugural (audio) \

Kids Definition of inaugural

: occuring as part of an inauguration an inaugural speech

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