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

And the Pentagon mandate is not to just fly them, but protect them from threats. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "PM Interview: The Guardians of Orbit," 22 Mar. 2019 Meanwhile, Congress is working on legislation to expand the mandate for CFIUS. Saleha Mohsin, Bloomberg.com, "Trump Signals He Favors Less Confrontation With China on Tech," 27 June 2018 The solar mandate is part of the energy commission’s latest code update. Kathleen Pender, San Francisco Chronicle, "Solar mandate could change how California homes are built," 1 June 2018 The mandate would be the first at the state level in the U.S., although some more local initiatives are already underway—San Francisco, for example, already requires new builds under 10 stories to come with solar panels. Alan Murray, Fortune, "Nestle and Starbucks, Air France-KLM, Mondelez and Tate's: CEO Daily for May 7, 2018," 7 May 2018 In a January letter, SQN threatened a proxy fight if its mandates to turn around... Laura Forman, WSJ, "Yelp Evades Fire but Isn’t Bulletproof," 7 Mar. 2019 Starting Monday, all restaurant, grocery and convenience store chains with 20 or more locations are required to display calorie counts for all items on their menus to comply with a mandate from the Affordable Care Act. Jessica Fecteau, PEOPLE.com, "Grocery Stores and Chain Restaurants Are Now Legally Required to Display Calorie Counts to Customers," 7 May 2018 Some analysts counter that the mandate has never been particularly aggressively enforced and has had little impact. WSJ, "WSJ Tax Guide 2019: Individual Mandate," 15 Feb. 2019 To comply with a state mandate that the county consolidate its 911 centers, officials included it in the new public safety complex with the Will County sheriff’s department on Laraway Road and US Route 52 in Joliet. Susan Demar Lafferty, Daily Southtown, "Brad Veerman remembered as a 'great public servant'," 9 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Other amendments on fall ballots would mandate photo identification to vote in person, lower the maximum income tax rate allowed from 10 percent to 7 percent, create a right to hunt and fish and expand the rights of crime victims. Gary D. Robertson, The Seattle Times, "5 ex-North Carolina governors rebuke lawmakers on amendments," 13 Aug. 2018 The initiative, if approved by voters, would mandate that Disneyland Resort and two large hotels planned for construction in the city pay at least $15 an hour starting Jan. 1, 2019, with salaries rising $1 an hour every Jan. 1 through 2022. Hugo Martin, latimes.com, "U.S. Sens. Sanders and Warren call for a living wage for resort workers," 26 June 2018 The new policy could also mandate that all allegations and investigations be shared if an employee is seeking employment at another UW institution or an outside entity. Samantha West, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "UW Board of Regents moves for a review of sexual harassment policies," 7 June 2018 The permanent injunctions would mandate that the clinics halt their stem cell treatments and clean up their manufacturing procedures. Andrew Joseph, STAT, "FDA seeking to stop procedures at two unregulated stem cell clinics," 9 May 2018 The county is constitutionally mandated to provide an attorney for alleged offenders who can’t afford to hire one. Jerzy Shedlock, The Seattle Times, "‘This is not OK’: Clark County Indigent Defense Office needs more attorneys for serious, time-consuming cases," 27 Nov. 2018 Security updates are mandated within the second year as well, though without a specified minimum number of releases. Jacob Kastrenakes, The Verge, "Google mandates two years of security updates for popular phones in new Android contract," 24 Oct. 2018 The sanctions are mandated by a U.S. law that requires action over the use of chemical and biological weapons—but President Trump maintains significant discretionary power over the degree of that punishment. Fox News, "Russian stocks, ruble take hit on uncertainty over US sanctions," 10 Aug. 2018 Local teams in the 14-and-under Pony, 11-and-under Bronco and 9-and-under Mustang divisions are now mandated to play games either earlier in the morning on Saturday or just before dark to avoid the most oppressive temperatures. Sam Dodge, latimes.com, "Heat postpones baseball games at PONY tournament," 7 July 2018

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

20 Apr 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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