muster

1 of 2

noun

mus·​ter ˈmə-stər How to pronounce muster (audio)
1
: a representative specimen (see specimen sense 1) : sample
musters of goods for sale
2
a
: an act of assembling
specifically : formal military inspection
Call out the troops to stand muster.
b
: critical examination
slipshod work that would never pass muster
c
: an assembled group : collection
a muster of biographical factsTime
d
: inventory
were sent … to take the musters of this expeditionG. R. Elton

muster

2 of 2

verb

mustered; mustering ˈmə-st(ə-)riŋ How to pronounce muster (audio)

transitive verb

1
a
: to cause to gather : convene
b
: to enroll formally
usually used with in or into
was mustered into the army
c
: to call the roll of
2
a
: to bring together : collect
b
: to call forth : rouse
3
: to amount to : comprise

intransitive verb

: to come together : congregate
Choose the Right Synonym for muster

summon, call, cite, convoke, convene, muster mean to demand the presence of.

summon implies the exercise of authority.

was summoned to answer charges

call may be used less formally for summon.

called the legislature into special session

cite implies a summoning to court usually to answer a charge.

cited for drunken driving

convoke implies a summons to assemble for deliberative or legislative purposes.

convoked a Vatican council

convene is somewhat less formal than convoke.

convened the students

muster suggests a calling up of a number of things that form a group in order that they may be exhibited, displayed, or utilized as a whole.

mustered the troops

Examples of muster in a Sentence

Noun a muster of concerned citizens considering the muster of suggestions that were submitted for “word of the year” Verb They pushed the car with all the strength they could muster. a command to muster the troops
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
But ultimately the packet didn’t seem to pass muster. William Vaillancourt, Rolling Stone, 4 Feb. 2024 However, there are also compounding pharmacies that don’t pass muster. Rachel Murphy, Verywell Health, 26 Jan. 2024 The entire menu will then have to pass muster with the NFL before being finalized. Tribune News Service, Hartford Courant, 15 Jan. 2024 This also means that the BOG regularly fields a number of outlandish, crackpot proposals that would never pass muster. Tyler Freel, Outdoor Life, 3 Jan. 2024 For example, an exploding ping-pong balls demonstration failed to pass muster with Nolan. Hugh Hart, Los Angeles Times, 13 Dec. 2023 The training is supposed to push you to the limit mentally and physically — and there’s no guarantee of passing muster. Eric Sondheimer, Los Angeles Times, 20 Nov. 2023 And so the mythology and the world has to pass muster between the two of us first. Daniel D'addario, Variety, 8 Nov. 2023 Mendelson introduced the bill last summer, Bowser signed it in mid-January, and, because D.C. bills must pass congressional muster before becoming law, this one didn’t take effect until March. Jenna Portnoy, Washington Post, 4 Aug. 2023
Verb
Now in 2023, after the problems have festered for years, Beijing seems unable to muster a forceful enough program to deal with the matter. Milton Ezrati, Forbes, 19 Feb. 2024 The protesters, mustered into brigades with names like the Swords of Truth, were peddling a conspiracy theory that Castro’s death was part of a coup. Elliot Ackerman, WIRED, 7 Feb. 2024 With even a few Republicans calling the move a stunt, Mr. Johnson could not muster a majority for impeachment in an embarrassing setback. Catie Edmondson, New York Times, 6 Feb. 2024 On March 4, 1921, at Harding’s inauguration, a determined Wilson somehow mustered the strength to ride with his successor from the White House to the Capitol, but skipped the actual ceremony on the inauguration stand. Thomas Doherty, The Conversation, 1 Feb. 2024 But despite the Ravens' issues, the Chiefs' offense couldn't muster anything after halftime either. Jordan Freiman, CBS News, 28 Jan. 2024 Nevertheless, Keoghan musters some insightful answers during the interview, discussing Dunkirk, Masters of the Air, and, of course, his recent hit Saltburn. Kory Grow, Rolling Stone, 8 Feb. 2024 Down 28-27 against Tennessee and 1:45 left, Tagovailoa and the Dolphins mustered only 19 yards on six plays, with Tagovailoa taking a sack on fourth down. Barry Jackson, Miami Herald, 7 Feb. 2024 Most seriously, amid the emotions laid bare by the Gaza conflict, some college campuses have devolved to the point where students who disagree cannot muster the civility to speak with one another. Jeff John Roberts, Fortune, 24 Jan. 2024 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'muster.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Noun

Middle English mustre, from Anglo-French mostre, monstre, from mustrer

Verb

Middle English mustren to show, muster, from Anglo-French mustrer, monstrer, from Latin monstrare to show, from monstrum evil omen, monster — more at monster entry 1

First Known Use

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of muster was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near muster

Cite this Entry

“Muster.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/muster. Accessed 28 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition

muster

1 of 2 verb
mus·​ter ˈməs-tər How to pronounce muster (audio)
mustered; mustering
-t(ə-)riŋ
1
a
: to enroll formally
was mustered into the army
b
: to assemble (as troops) for roll call or inspection
2
: to stir up or bring to action
all the strength I could muster

muster

2 of 2 noun
1
a
: an act of assembling
especially : a formal military inspection or drill
b
: an assembled group : collection
2
: critical examination
work that did not pass muster

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