lau·​re·​ate | \ ˈlȯr-ē-ət How to pronounce laureate (audio) , ˈlär- \

Definition of laureate

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: the recipient of honor or recognition for achievement in an art or science a Nobel laureate specifically : poet laureate


lau·​re·​ate | \ ˈlȯr-ē-ˌāt How to pronounce laureate (audio) , ˈlär- \
laureated; laureating

Definition of laureate (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to crown with or as if with a laurel wreath for excellence or achievement
2 : to appoint to the office of poet laureate


lau·​re·​ate | \ ˈlȯr-ē-ət How to pronounce laureate (audio) , ˈlär- \

Definition of laureate (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : honored for outstanding achievement in an art or science This was a term coined in the 1950s by Nobel laureate chemist Irving Langmuir …— Gary Taubes — see also poet laureate
2 : crowned with laurel Minted in France in 1807, the front of the medal shows the laureate head of Emperor Napoleon and, on the reverse, an eagle clutching a thunderbolt, part of the emperor's imperial seal.— Brice Stump

Other Words from laureate


laureateship \ ˈlȯr-​ē-​ət-​ˌship How to pronounce laureate (audio) , ˈlär-​ \ noun


laureation \ ˌlȯr-​ē-​ˈā-​shən How to pronounce laureate (audio) , ˌlär-​ \ noun

Examples of laureate in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun That was the view of the Russian novelist and former political prisoner Alexander Solzhenitsyn, another Nobel laureate, who was exiled by the Soviets in 1974 and returned to Russia in 1994. Yaroslav Trofimov, WSJ, 28 Apr. 2022 The military appears to be intent on completely removing the Nobel laureate, 76, from politics and public life. Washington Post, 1 Mar. 2022 In addition to providing succinct assessments of such writers as the Nobel laureate Mo Yan, the dissident Ma Jian, and the science-fiction visionary Liu Cixin, this survey of contemporary Chinese literature considers less prominent figures. The New Yorker, 11 Apr. 2022 Myanmar was then a month into the military coup, and many were still taking to the streets to protest the detention of Aung San Suu Kyi, the Nobel Peace laureate who had been the country’s civilian leader, and her top advisers. Washington Post, 30 Mar. 2022 Thousands of others are imprisoned, including Aung San Suu Kyi, 76, the Nobel Peace laureate who had been the leader of Myanmar, formerly known as Burma, since a 2015 election ended decades of military rule. Yashraj Sharma, NBC News, 8 Feb. 2022 And for some, the sudden ascension to Nobel laureate is an unwanted intrusion altogether. Rob Picheta, CNN, 9 Oct. 2021 His sermon on the importance of forgiveness after visiting the Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial in Israel in 1989 drew the ire of Jewish activists, including fellow Nobel laureate Elie Wiesel. Joshua Berlinger, CNN, 27 Dec. 2021 For those watching – in Helena and Johannesburg alike – the message was clear: Tutu might be a Nobel laureate, but no person, no cause, no fundraiser was too small to be worthy of his time or his gratitude. Ryan Lenora Brown, The Christian Science Monitor, 26 Dec. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb This monthlong series continues and includes an afternoon of outdoor readings by poets laureate from cities across SoCal, curated by Pomona’s own poet laureate, David Judah Oliver. Los Angeles Times, 12 May 2022 Scientists have been modeling infectious-disease outbreaks since at least the early 1900s, when the Nobel laureate Ronald Ross used mosquito-reproduction rates and parasite-incubation periods to predict the spread of malaria. New York Times, 22 Nov. 2021 The contributors range from former and current poets laureate to truck drivers and students. Jim Higgins, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 14 Sep. 2021 Mojgani, named state poet laureate in 2020, was among 23 state and city poets laureate who received the fellowships, funded by the Academy of American Poets with support from the Mellon Foundation. oregonlive, 16 June 2021 The academy is awarding a total of $1.1 million to 23 poets laureate around the country for public projects like Hamilton's, plus more than $100,000 in support for nonprofit organizations like Woodland Pattern who are assisting the laureates. Jim Higgins, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 4 June 2021 What's the collective noun for a bunch of poets laureate in one place together? Jim Higgins, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 2 Dec. 2020 The gala concert featured Music and Artistic Director Gustavo Dudamel and his predecessors, conductor laureate Esa-Pekka Salonen and conductor emeritus Zubin Mehta. Matt Cooper, Los Angeles Times, 8 May 2020 But the Nobel Peace Prize laureate soon disappointed her supporters abroad when her Administration, which still shares power with the military, defended the army’s brutal campaign against the Rohingya Muslim minority. Time, 5 Mar. 2020 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'laureate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of laureate


circa 1529, in the meaning defined above


circa 1610, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1508, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for laureate

Noun and Verb

Middle English, crowned with laurel as a distinction, from Latin laureatus, from laurea laurel wreath, from feminine of laureus of laurel, from laurus

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The first known use of laureate was in 1508

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Last Updated

8 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Laureate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 May. 2022.

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