label

noun
la·​bel | \ ˈlā-bəl How to pronounce label (audio) \

Essential Meaning of label

1 : a piece of paper, cloth, or similar material that is attached to something to identify or describe it The name is prominently displayed on the label. You should read the warning label before you take any medicine. (US) a mailing label [=a piece of paper with a mailing address already printed on it]
2 : a word or phrase that describes or identifies something or someone The word was given the label "obsolete." Some people describe him as "selfish," but he doesn't deserve that label. Once you give people labels, it's hard to see them as individuals.
3 : a company that produces musical recordings a major/independent record label The band has made records for/on/with several different labels in their career.

Full Definition of label

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a slip (as of paper or cloth) inscribed and affixed to something for identification or description The name is prominently displayed on the label.
b : written or printed matter accompanying an article to furnish identification or other information Read the warning label before taking any medicine.
c : a descriptive or identifying word or phrase: such as
(1) : epithet acquired the label of "playboy"
(2) : a word or phrase used with a dictionary definition to provide additional information The label obsolete is abbreviated obs.
d : a usually radioactive isotope used in labeling
2a(1) : a brand of commercial recordings issued under a usually trademarked name
(2) : a company issuing such recordings The band has made records for several different labels.
(3) : a recording so issued
b : the brand name of a retail store selling clothing, a clothing manufacturer, or a fashion designer She only buys clothes with a designer label.
3 : an adhesive stamp (as for postage or revenue)
4 : a heraldic charge that consists of a narrow horizontal band with usually three pendants
5 archaic : band, fillet specifically : one attached to a document to hold an appended seal

label

verb
labeled or labelled; labeling or labelling\ ˈlā-​b(ə-​)liŋ How to pronounce label (audio) \

Definition of label (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to affix a label to labeled the switches so as not to confuse them
b : to describe or designate with or as if with a label labels his photos with the date and place they were taken
2a : to distinguish (an element or atom) by using an isotope (see isotope sense 1) distinctive in some manner (as in mass or radioactivity)
b : to distinguish (something, such as a compound or cell) by introducing a traceable constituent (such as a dye or labeled atom)

Other Words from label

Verb

labelable \ ˈlā-​bə-​lə-​bəl How to pronounce label (audio) \ adjective
labeler \ ˈlā-​b(ə-​)lər How to pronounce label (audio) \ noun

Synonyms for label

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Verb

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Examples of label in a Sentence

Noun The name is prominently displayed on the label. You should read the warning label before you take any medicine. The word was given the label “obsolete.” Some people describe him as “selfish,” but he doesn't deserve that label. Once you give people labels, it's hard to see them as individuals. The band has made records for several different labels in their career. Verb Be sure to carefully label the switches so that you don't confuse them. He labels his photographs with the date and place they were taken.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun So is the balancing act of a luxury label trying to sell exclusivity while actually only making money off affordable accessories. Alison Willmore, Vulture, 24 Nov. 2021 Documents state the edibles were in a Sour Patch Kids bag and had a label of 600 mg. Connor Sanders, The Salt Lake Tribune, 24 Nov. 2021 Burnside’s album was released by Single Lock Records, a label based in Florence. Mary Colurso | Mcolurso@al.com, al, 23 Nov. 2021 If the results are positive, the company expects to apply for a wider FDA label. Damian Garde, STAT, 20 Nov. 2021 ITV Studios has added a new label under its banner, David P. Davis’s 5 Acts Productions. K.j. Yossman, Variety, 18 Nov. 2021 And that’s just to get the unit to a respectable level, which is a label the Dolphins rushing attack has flirted with, but failed to achieve the previous two seasons, during Brian Flores’ reign as head coach. Omar Kelly, sun-sentinel.com, 16 Nov. 2021 Swift didn't own her masters in the first place because, when a recording artist signs with a label, the standard legal arrangement grants the record company ownership of the copyrights of the recordings. Frank Pallotta, CNN, 12 Nov. 2021 The graphic novel will be published by Anthology Editions, one side of the company that includes Anthology Recordings, a label that reissues psych and surf-rock music from the nineteen-sixties and seventies, among other releases. Genevieve Bormes, The New Yorker, 12 Nov. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb To this day, the luxury shoe label still supplies the Queen with shoes and holds a Royal Warrant for doing so. Stephanie Petit, PEOPLE.com, 26 Oct. 2021 The luxury spirits label also prides itself in its premium experience and comprehensive post-purchase ecosystem. Tiffany Lung, Forbes, 19 Oct. 2021 Be sure to label your liquids and sanitizer properly. Geoff Whitmore, Forbes, 12 Nov. 2021 Of the 275 candidates that Ballotpedia was able to label, about 28 percent of the winners had taken a conservative stance. Washington Post, 8 Nov. 2021 Deaths that resulted from family violence even if police didn’t label the death a homicide. Emilie Eaton, San Antonio Express-News, 3 Nov. 2021 Here’s my special antibody to label some protein in the cell. Quanta Magazine, 2 Nov. 2021 Amorphic has been collaborating with House of RAD for branding and can label designs. Hannah Kirby, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 28 Oct. 2021 Yet conservative critics have appropriated the term critical race theory to label a range of initiatives schools have implemented to improve racial equity, combat bias and educate about historically underrepresented groups. Kristen Taketa, San Diego Union-Tribune, 3 Oct. 2021

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

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 4

Verb

1616, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for label

Noun and Verb

Middle English, from Anglo-French labelle

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Time Traveler for label

Time Traveler

The first known use of label was in the 14th century

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Dictionary Entries Near label

labefaction

label

label clause

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Statistics for label

Last Updated

28 Nov 2021

Cite this Entry

“Label.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/label. Accessed 7 Dec. 2021.

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More Definitions for label

label

noun
la·​bel | \ ˈlā-bəl How to pronounce label (audio) \

Kids Definition of label

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a slip (as of paper or cloth) attached to something to identify or describe it
2 : a word or phrase that describes or names something or someone a part-of-speech label

label

verb
labeled or labelled; labeling or labelling

Kids Definition of label (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to put a word or words on (something) to identify or describe it Be sure to label your belongings.
2 : to name or describe with or as if with a label The team was labeled "the Dream Team."

label

noun
la·​bel | \ ˈlā-bəl How to pronounce label (audio) \

Medical Definition of label

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a usually radioactive isotope used in labeling

label

transitive verb
labeled or labelled; labeling or labelling\ ˈlā-​b(ə-​)liŋ How to pronounce label (audio) \

Medical Definition of label (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to distinguish (an element or atom) by using an isotope distinctive in some manner (as in mass or radioactivity) for tracing through chemical reactions or biological processes
2 : to distinguish (as a compound or cell) by introducing a traceable constituent (as a dye or labeled atom)

More from Merriam-Webster on label

Nglish: Translation of label for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of label for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about label

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