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 In the face of a federal mandate to deliver substandard healthcare, Planned Parenthood withdrew entirely from Title X. Michael Hiltzik, Los Angeles Times, "Column: A Trump-era attack on Planned Parenthood and women’s health comes to an end," 16 Apr. 2021 Under federal mandate, face masks are still required for every traveler over the age of two, regardless of vaccination status. Ramsey Qubein, Condé Nast Traveler, "What to Expect When Flying This Summer," 13 Apr. 2021 The White House has ruled out a national vaccine passport system, confirming there will be no federal vaccinations database and no federal mandate for vaccine credentials. Suzanne Rowan Kelleher, Forbes, "Hawaii’s Vaccine Passport Is Slated To Roll Out By Summer," 12 Apr. 2021 The Biden administration has said there will be no federal mandate for a single vaccination credential, leaving the issue of whether to require evidence and how to police it to local governments and the private sector. Julie Wernau, WSJ, "Vaccination Passports Are New Flashpoint in Covid-19 Pandemic," 9 Apr. 2021 In addition to tests in English language arts and math, the District also tests students in science, though that is not part of the federal mandate. Washington Post, "D.C. is granted permission to skip national standardized exam," 8 Apr. 2021 The budget carrier initially said Ari and Avital Eisenberg, of Toms River, N.J., refused to follow a federal mandate that requires airline passengers to wear masks. Fox News, "Spirit deletes tweet claiming toddler mask incident never happened after video surfaces," 7 Apr. 2021 However, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said Monday there will be no federal mandate that would require every American to get a vaccine credential. Kelly Murray And Gregory Lemos, CNN, "Florida governor bans Covid-19 'vaccine passports'," 3 Apr. 2021 White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said in a separate briefing Monday there will be no centralized federal vaccination database, and no federal mandate requiring a single vaccination credential. BostonGlobe.com, "White House says private sector, not federal government, should lead on vaccine passports," 29 Mar. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Kansas lawmakers voted to rescind Gov. Laura Kelly’s mask mandate within hours of the governor issuing the executive order. Carly Ortiz-lytle, Washington Examiner, "Kansas lawmakers revoke Democratic governor's mask mandate," 3 Apr. 2021 Last summer Marion County first implemented its mask mandate a few weeks in advance of the state. Shari Rudavsky, The Indianapolis Star, "Indianapolis will retain mask mandate despite governor ending its version, mayor says," 25 Mar. 2021 In addition, initiatives like GDPR, CCPA and HIPAA that mandate specific rights for consumers mean that organizations can't be lulled into a passive approach. Rehan Jalil, Forbes, "Five Questions To Ask Before Migrating Data To The Cloud," 18 Mar. 2021 As the City of Galveston lifted its mask mandate this past week on the orders of the Texas governor, officials urged people to still respect the rules of business owners. Washington Post, "A maskless woman was handcuffed in a Texas bank one day after the state lifted its mandates," 14 Mar. 2021 Concerned by the virus’ continued spread, Gov. Steve Sisolak on Nov. 22 announced the state’s most expansive mask mandate to date and reduced the capacity at casinos, restaurants, bars and many other businesses from 50% to 25%. Jessica Flores, USA TODAY, "Coronavirus updates: California sets daily record for hospitalizations; Oregon nurse on leave after TikTok video; 266K US deaths," 30 Nov. 2020 Lee’s state is among those without a blanket mask mandate despite a study released this week showing that areas of Tennessee where people are not required to wear them are seeing the most hospitalizations. Adam Geller And David Pitt, chicagotribune.com, "Even as US coronavirus cases surge past 9 million, officials in many hard-hit states resist taking stronger action," 30 Oct. 2020 Floyd County also has a county mask mandate that’s set to expire Saturday. David J. Kim, The Courier-Journal, "How Indiana is doing with coronavirus cases two weeks after moving to Stage 5 of reopening," 12 Oct. 2020 In Chandler, city officials reevaluate its mask mandate every two weeks. Sasha Hupka, The Arizona Republic, "Maricopa County's mask mandate, and some local ones, remain as Arizona's COVID-19 cases drop. Here's what we know now," 19 Aug. 2020

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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Time Traveler for mandate

Time Traveler

The first known use of mandate was in 1501

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Statistics for mandate

Last Updated

2 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Mandate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/mandate. Accessed 5 May. 2021.

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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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