intermediary

adjective
in·​ter·​me·​di·​ary | \ ˌin-tər-ˈmē-dē-ˌer-ē How to pronounce intermediary (audio) \

Definition of intermediary

 (Entry 1 of 2)

2 : acting as a mediator an intermediary agent an intermediary particle

intermediary

noun
plural intermediaries

Definition of intermediary (Entry 2 of 2)

2 : an intermediate form, product, or stage

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Did You Know?

Since inter- means "between, among", an intermediary is someone who moves back and forth in the middle area between two sides—a "go-between". Mediator (which shares the medi- root) is often a synonym, and so is facilitator; broker and agent are often others. Thus, a real-estate broker or agent shuttles between a house's buyer and seller, who may never even meet each other. Financial intermediation is what happens when you put money in a bank or investment firm, which then invests it in various companies; if you want, you can instead cut out the intermediary and invest the money directly in companies of your own choosing.

Examples of intermediary in a Sentence

Adjective

the bridal couple were regally ensconced in intermediary seats at the head table

Noun

He served as an intermediary between the workers and the executives. in the past he's served as an intermediary in several hostage situations
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Not sure if there is an intermediary step but the Breeders’ Cup Classic is in the cards. John Cherwa, Los Angeles Times, "Racing! McKinzie seems ready for more," 4 Aug. 2019 BMIs aim to further integrate technology into the human experience by bypassing intermediary steps, like hands, creating a direct channel of exchange between the brain and machines. Ephrat Livni, Quartz, "Elon Musk wants to put an AI interface in your brain. Should you be worried?," 21 July 2019 And, each time, the number of people accumulating in intermediary countries would grow. Amanda Taub, New York Times, "Trump’s Immigration Approach Isn’t New: Europe and Australia Went First," 18 July 2019 The discovery of these new intermediary species, which filled in the spotty fossil record, triggered a change in how paleontologists conceived of the dinosaur-to-bird transition. Quanta Magazine, "How Dinosaurs Shrank and Became Birds," 2 June 2015 Social media influencers are often one-person businesses, but a whole ecosystem of intermediary actors has developed around them. Hanna Kozlowska, Quartz, "A whole ecosystem of companies influences the influencers," 10 June 2019 In essence, Apple is adding an extra intermediary step, making sure the app doesn’t know your email and that third parties can’t combine data to get a picture of your activity across multiple apps. Russell Brandom, The Verge, "Apple’s new sign-in button is built for a post-Cambridge Analytica world," 8 June 2019 The technology sector was previously a strong source of demand but declined to fifth in sectors looking for workers, while intermediary services, education and pharmaceutical industries were looking for the most workers. Bloomberg.com, "It Looks Like the Worst Chinese Labor Market Since 2015," 26 Apr. 2019 The New York Fed’s Fedwire system, which handles large dollar payments, was critical to the conspiracy, according to the lawsuit, allowing the money to quickly move to the intermediary banks. Samuel Rubenfeld, WSJ, "Bangladesh Bank Sues Filipino Lender in U.S. Court Over Hack Heist," 4 Feb. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Being between blocs has its risks, but also provides opportunities to gain from each bloc and act as an intermediary. Nicholas Borroz, Quartz India, "There’s much more than national prestige driving India’s ambitious moon mission," 21 Aug. 2019 The lawsuit, settled privately in 2010 with no admission of wrongdoing, alleged that Kellen served as the intermediary between the recruiters and Epstein. Cara Kelly, USA TODAY, "Jeffrey Epstein is dead. Prosecutors could still go after his inner circle if they helped him prey on young girls," 10 Aug. 2019 There has been speculation that Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul-Mahdi, who visited Iran on Monday, may have acted as an intermediary in the tanker crisis. Aya Batrawy, BostonGlobe.com, "Iran’s president hints at quid pro quo for seized UK ship," 24 July 2019 Perot had learned about this Magna Carta from Stanley Marcus’ daughter, Jerrie Marcus Smith, who acted as intermediary. Cheryl Hall, Dallas News, "Remembering Ross Perot: Tom Luce gets tapped to authenticate a Magna Carta and bring it safely to Dallas," 12 July 2019 The idea was always that someone would be allowed to make a profit as an intermediary. Noam Cohen, WIRED, "Facebook’s Libra Reveals Silicon Valley’s Naked Ambition," 19 June 2019 This strategy recognizes that everyone who speaks online is dependent on a series of intermediaries, including direct ones like Facebook or YouTube and ISPs like Comcast or Verizon. Peter Rubin, WIRED, "When Limiting Online Speech to Curb Violence, We Should Be Careful," 9 Aug. 2019 The Globe reported in April that the company was considering structuring that deal using intermediaries, such that its control of licenses in excess of the state cap would be disguised. Dan Adams, BostonGlobe.com, "Massachusetts marijuana regulators hit Curaleaf with record $250,000 fine," 8 Aug. 2019 The two other men arrested were a Swiss citizen, 42, and an Italian citizen, 51, who allegedly were trying to sell the missile with Del Bergiolo as an intermediary, the Guardian reported. Ryan W. Miller, USA TODAY, "Police seize missile, guns, Nazi memorabilia in sting tied to far-right extremists in Italy," 16 July 2019

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

Adjective

1777, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1791, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Learn More about intermediary

Statistics for intermediary

Last Updated

13 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for intermediary

The first known use of intermediary was in 1777

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More Definitions for intermediary

intermediary

noun

English Language Learners Definition of intermediary

: a person who works with opposing sides in an argument or dispute in order to bring about an agreement

intermediary

noun
in·​ter·​me·​di·​ary | \ ˌin-tər-ˈmē-dē-ˌer-ē How to pronounce intermediary (audio) \
plural intermediaries

Kids Definition of intermediary

intermediary

noun
in·​ter·​me·​di·​ary | \ ˌint-ər-ˈmēd-ē-ˌer-ē How to pronounce intermediary (audio) \
plural intermediaries

Medical Definition of intermediary

1 : mediator
2 : an intermediate form, product, or stage

Other Words from intermediary

intermediary adjective

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intermediary

noun
in·​ter·​me·​di·​ary | \ ˌin-tər-ˈmē-dē-ˌer-ē\
plural intermediaries

Legal Definition of intermediary

: one that acts as a means or go-between in a matter involving other parties a reinsurance intermediary — see also learned intermediary

Other Words from intermediary

intermediary adjective

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Comments on intermediary

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