mem·​ber·​ship | \ˈmem-bər-ˌship \

Definition of membership 

1 : the state or status of being a member

2 : the body of members an organization with a large membership

3 : the relation between an element of a set or class and the set or class — compare inclusion sense 3a

Examples of membership in a Sentence

What is the cost of a one-year membership? Membership in the club doubled last year. clubs that are hoping to increase their membership The club has a large membership. clubs that are hoping to increase their memberships
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

Support for Kosovo’s INTERPOL membership was never about recognition of Kosovo’s independence, but about strengthening global law enforcement cooperation and closing a critical security gap in the Balkans. Aya Batrawy, The Seattle Times, "Kosovo’s bid to join Interpol fails, in victory for Serbia," 20 Nov. 2018 North Dakota tribes have responded to the new voter ID law by forming a coalition, disseminating information, and mobilizing to provide new IDs with residential addresses to their memberships free of charge. Ruth Hopkins, Teen Vogue, "Native Voters Explain Why the Midterms Matter," 2 Nov. 2018 Noiselab is your one-stop resource for learning everything there is to know about Ableton, and a lifetime membership is available for over 95% off at just $29. Popular Mechanics, "Noiselab Teaches You Everything You Need To Know About Music Production," 16 Oct. 2018 Some teachers say union membership is too expensive. Lois K. Solomon,, "State law that targets teachers unions appears to be increasing membership," 13 July 2018 To firebrands like Lena Morrow Lewis, who had risen quickly to become one of the Socialist Party’s most well-known organizers and orators, the misogyny of the party’s male membership was blinding them to societal realities. Olivia Campbell, Smithsonian, "The Historical Struggle to Rid Socialism of Sexism," 12 July 2018 The UUA’s board in 2016 committed $5.3 million to Black Lives of Unitarian Universalism — notable for a denomination whose membership is less than half a percent of the American population. Michelle Boorstein, Washington Post, "Prominent progressive D.C. church, accused of racism, tries to move on," 10 July 2018 Federal employee union membership is growing, even as private sector union enrollment declines. Lisa Rein, Anchorage Daily News, "New curbs on federal unions begin to take effect," 9 July 2018 Union membership in the United States has been collapsing for six decades. Michael Hicks, Indianapolis Star, "Hicks: Ruling against public-sector unions makes us freer," 1 July 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of membership

1643, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about membership

Share membership

Statistics for membership

Last Updated

1 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for membership

The first known use of membership was in 1643

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for membership



English Language Learners Definition of membership

: the state of belonging to or being a part of a group or an organization : the state of being a member

: all the people or things that belong to or are part of an organization or a group


mem·​ber·​ship | \ˈmem-bər-ˌship \

Kids Definition of membership

1 : the state or fact of belonging to a group

2 : the whole number of individuals that make up a group The membership voted to increase dues.

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on membership

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with membership

Spanish Central: Translation of membership

Nglish: Translation of membership for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of membership for Arabic Speakers

Comments on membership

What made you want to look up membership? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


living or existing for a long time

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Late Autumn 2018 Words of the Day Quiz

  • frosted-autumn-leaves
  • Which is a synonym of yahoo?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!