mandate

noun
man·​date | \ ˈman-ˌdāt How to pronounce mandate (audio) \

Definition of mandate

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an authoritative command especially : a formal order from a superior court or official to an inferior one
2 : an authorization to act given to a representative accepted the mandate of the people
3a : an order or commission granted by the League of Nations to a member nation for the establishment of a responsible government over a former German colony or other conquered territory
b : a mandated territory

mandate

verb
man·​date | \ ˈman-ˌdāt How to pronounce mandate (audio) \
mandated; mandating

Definition of mandate (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to administer or assign (something, such as a territory) under a mandate
2 : to officially require (something) : make (something) mandatory : order a law mandating recycling also : to direct or require (someone) to do something a commission mandated to investigate corruption

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When Should You Use mandate?

A mandate from a leader is a command you can't refuse. But that kind of personal command is rarely the meaning of mandate today; much more common are connected with institutions. Thus, the Clean Air Act was a mandate from Congress to clean up air pollution—and since mandate is also a verb, we could say instead that the Clear Air Act mandated new restrictions on air pollution. Elections are often interpreted as mandates from the public for certain kinds of action. But since a politician is not just a symbol of certain policies but also an individual who might happen to have an awfully nice smile, it can be risky to interpret most elections as mandating anything at all.

Examples of mandate in a Sentence

Noun

Sports fans have considerable forbearance. Year after year they endure escalating ticket prices, the abomination known as seat licensing and the implied mandate that taxpayers should foot the bill for the new stadium or arena that will absolutely revive downtown. — Jack McCallum, Sports Illustrated, 30 July 2007 All provisions requiring congressional approval, such as FDA regulation, were dropped, as were mandates for stronger package warnings, tighter enforcement on sales to youth, stronger public smoking bans, and … provisions to reduce youth smoking. — Allan M. Brandt, The Cigarette Century, 2007 Not the least of the Governors' problems are the new mandates being put on them by Washington—by a President who was once one of their own. — Karen Tumulty, Time, 19 May 2003 Royal mandates must be obeyed. They carried out the governor's mandate to build more roads. He won the election so convincingly that he believed he had been given a mandate for change.

Verb

The carbon prices on the European exchanges are higher precisely because the allowances for carbon emissions are mandated by government. — Al Gore, An Inconvenient Truth, 2006 But the FDA did nothing. Later, it protested that it doesn't have the authority to mandate additional studies once a drug is marketed, but that is sophistry. The FDA has the authority to pull drugs off the market … — Marcia Angell, New York Review of Books, 8 June 2006 For a few tantalizing weeks this spring, the manufacturers of gun safety locks seemed to have hit the jackpot: the gun-control bill passed by the Senate in the wake of the Littleton shootings mandated that all new handguns be equipped with safety locks. — Calvin Trillin, Time, 5 July 1999 The law mandates that every car have seat belts. He won the election so convincingly that he believed the people had mandated him to carry out his policies.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Indeed, a lawsuit claiming that the bank’s quantitative-easing scheme overstepped its legal mandate is making its way through Germany’s constitutional court. The Economist, "Germany debates banning negative interest rates," 29 Aug. 2019 Moreover, the services also claim that the CRB's decision to retroactively apply the rates to Jan. 1 2018 is invalid, again saying that its mandate doesn't include the authority to do that. Ed Christman, Billboard, "'Confusion & Inconsistency': Spotify, Amazon Make Case Against Royalty Board Rate Determination," 15 Aug. 2019 Her mandate was simply to reunify Carlos with his children. Melissa Del Bosque, ProPublica, "The Case That Made an Ex-ICE Attorney Realize the Government Was Relying on False “Evidence” Against Migrants," 13 Aug. 2019 Republicans have argued that Mueller stepped outside his mandate, when generally people who aren't accused of crimes are presumed innocent. Author: Aaron Blake, Anchorage Daily News, "Five takeaways from Robert Mueller’s testimony," 24 July 2019 House Republicans repeatedly accused Mueller of over-stepping his mandate during his 22-month investigation, and Mueller offered little or no defense to some of their attacks. Chris Strohm, Fortune, "Mueller Appears Halting and Quiet in Long-Anticipated Hearing," 24 July 2019 At the same time, its mandate and accompanying bureaucracy of ten field centers has swollen to include a vast array of planetary, solar, and Earth science missions. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, "The Greatest Leap, part 6: After Apollo, NASA still searching for an encore," 21 July 2019 Our mandate is that the orchestra doesn’t just back us up. Christopher Arnott, courant.com, "No crazy costumes, just a ‘blast’: HSO, rock band to play the music of Elton John. Here’s the set list.," 15 July 2019 Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich is among the state officials seeking to undo the entire ACA by pointing to a provision in the 2017 tax cuts that did away with its insurance mandate. Ronald J. Hansen, azcentral, "National Democratic Party chairman Tom Perez defends 'Obamacare' in Phoenix," 9 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

All 50 states, Washington, D.C., and all U.S. territories have laws mandating vaccination for entry into school and childcare, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) explains. Carolyn L. Todd, SELF, "What Actually Counts as a Medical Exemption for Vaccines—and What's at Stake When They're Abused," 26 Aug. 2019 Federal legislation mandating background checks has been opposed by the NRA in the past. Josh Dawsey, The Denver Post, "Trump tells NRA chief that universal background checks are off the table," 20 Aug. 2019 In recent months, Illinois, Colorado and New Jersey have all passed legislation mandating that LGBT history be taught as part of school curriculum. Samantha Schmidt, Washington Post, "Maryland schools aim to include LGBT and disability rights in history curriculum," 16 Aug. 2019 When Jim Crow laws mandating the separation of the races in widespread aspects of public life were systematically instituted across America. AZCentral.com, "After El Paso, Latinos across America voice a new kind of fear," 16 Aug. 2019 Bioenergy DevCo will initially develop facilities in Maryland, New Jersey and New York, all three states that this year passed laws mandating certain food waste recycling. Los Angeles Times, "Turning rotten food and poop into energy: Investors smell an opportunity," 14 Aug. 2019 Judge Lamberth rejected a constitutional challenge by the defense to a law mandating that Mr. Slatten receive a life sentence for the first-degree murder conviction, which the judge formally imposed. Charlie Savage, New York Times, "Defiant Former Blackwater Contractor Again Sentenced to Life," 14 Aug. 2019 States are passing laws mandating that antidotes be made available to patients getting opioids. San Diego Union-Tribune, "CounterAct provides treatment for opioid overdose before it occurs," 7 Aug. 2019 There is no law mandating that our futures bear some familial resemblance to the worst of our present. Jelani Cobb, The New Yorker, "How the Trail of American White Supremacy Led to El Paso," 6 Aug. 2019

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

Noun

1501, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1919, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for mandate

Noun and Verb

Middle French & Latin; Middle French mandat, from Latin mandatum, from neuter of mandatus, past participle of mandare to entrust, enjoin, probably irregular from manus hand + -dere to put — more at manual, do

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Statistics for mandate

Last Updated

7 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for mandate

The first known use of mandate was in 1501

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More Definitions for mandate

mandate

noun

English Language Learners Definition of mandate

 (Entry 1 of 2)

formal
: an official order to do something
: the power to act that voters give to their elected leaders

mandate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of mandate (Entry 2 of 2)

chiefly US, formal
: to officially demand or require (something)
: to officially give (someone) the power to do something

mandate

noun
man·​date | \ ˈman-ˌdāt How to pronounce mandate (audio) \

Kids Definition of mandate

1 : an order from a higher court to a lower court
2 : a command or instruction from an authority
3 : the instruction given by voters to their elected representatives

mandate

noun
man·​date | \ ˈman-ˌdāt How to pronounce mandate (audio) \

Legal Definition of mandate

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a formal communication from a reviewing court notifying the court below of its judgment and directing the lower court to act accordingly
b : mandamus
2 in the civil law of Louisiana : an act by which a person gives another person the power to transact for him or her one or several affairs
3a : an authoritative command : a clear authorization or direction the mandate of the full faith and credit clauseNational Law Journal
b : the authorization to act given by a constituency to its elected representative

mandate

transitive verb
mandated; mandating

Legal Definition of mandate (Entry 2 of 2)

: to make mandatory or required the Pennsylvania Constitution mandates a criminal defendant's right to confrontationNational Law Journal

History and Etymology for mandate

Noun

Latin mandatum, from neuter of mandatus, past participle of mandare to entrust, enjoin, probably irregularly from manus hand + -dere to put

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Comments on mandate

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