\ ˈnām How to pronounce name (audio) \

Definition of name

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : a word or phrase that constitutes the distinctive designation of a person or thing The boy's name is Brad.
b : a word or symbol used in logic to designate an entity
2 : a descriptive often disparaging epithet called him names
3a : reputation gave the town a bad name
b : an illustrious record : fame made a name for himself in golf
c : a person or thing with a reputation one of the most detested names in history
4 : family, clan was a disgrace to his name
5 : appearance as opposed to reality a friend in name only
6 : one referred to by a name praise his holy name
in the name of
1 : by authority of open in the name of the law
2 : for the reason of : using the excuse of called for reforms in the name of progress


named; naming

Definition of name (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to give a name to : call
2a : to mention or identify by name refused to name a suspect
b : to accuse by name
3 : to nominate for office : appoint
4 : to decide on : choose name the day of the wedding
5 : to mention explicitly : specify unwilling to name a price

Definition of name (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : of, relating to, or bearing a name name tags
2 : appearing in the name of a literary or theatrical production
3a : having an established reputation
b : featuring celebrities

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Other Words from name


namer noun

Examples of name in a Sentence

Noun Please write your name on this line. State your name and occupation. I refused to give them my name. Mark Twain's real name was Samuel Clemens. She registered at the hotel under a false name. My full name is Susan Elaine Smith. We had to memorize the names of all the countries in Africa. “What's your dog's name?” “His name is Sandy.” This is his song “Loving You” from the album of the same name. The ship's name was “Titanic.” Verb “What are you going to name your new dog?” “I think I'll name him Sandy.” The aptly named HMS “Victorious” helped the British Royal Navy win an important victory. A man named James Smith is on the phone. We named our daughter “Mary” in honor of her grandmother. Can you name the person who attacked you? All of the authors named above were influenced by his work. She was named to replace him as the company's vice president. Adjective the university's physics department boasts a number of name physicists
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Klein fought for the rights of women to open bank accounts or buy stocks in their own name, without having to ask their husbands or fathers for permission as required by law in earlier decades. Deborah Netburn, Los Angeles Times, "Joan Dempsey Klein, a California appellate court judge and a champion of women’s rights, dies at 96," 3 Jan. 2021 One of the dean’s scholarships was awarded to a doctoral student in her name. Cassandra Spratling, Detroit Free Press, "Beloved Detroit educator Rose Marie Dickens Swanson dies at age 83," 30 Dec. 2020 During an interview with investigators, one man told authorities that fake returns had been filed in his name. Mario Ariza,, "Woman defrauded hundreds of immigrants and plowed the money into real estate," 30 Dec. 2020 But first, has someone filed for unemployment in your name? Ashley Shaffer, USA TODAY, "It's here. The new COVID-19 strain is here.," 30 Dec. 2020 In 1996, the talk-show host Kathy Lee Gifford was caught in a scandal after a human rights organization reported that child sweatshop labor in Honduras was being exploited to manufacture a clothing line in her name. New York Times, "Howard J. Rubenstein, Public Relations Impresario, Dies at 88," 29 Dec. 2020 Young was absent from the U.S. Capitol but gave permission for a fellow Republican to cast a proxy vote in his name. James Brooks, Anchorage Daily News, "Alaska Gov. Dunleavy favors $2,000 federal stimulus checks, but congressional delegation stays quiet," 29 Dec. 2020 The Duke and Duchess of Sussex got in contact with community-minded crafting company Make Give Live in New Zealand to place a special order in Archie's name. Sarah Midkiff,, "Meghan, Harry & Archie Are Putting Their Love Of Beanies To A Good Cause," 29 Dec. 2020 Gow is content to leave it—and the life-risking in its name that comes with the territory—to the next generation of Canadian mountaineers. Cassidy Randall, Time, "How One Man Survived a Plane Crash and 5 Days in the Snowy Canadian Wilderness—and Went On to Help Shape the Modern Ski Industry," 27 Dec. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Last month, San Francisco’s Port Commission voted to name two streets within Mission Rock after Black women with ties to San Francisco. John King,, "Giants’ Mission Rock megaproject starting to take shape across from Oracle Park," 1 Jan. 2021 Pole vaulter Paige Sommers of Westlake Village Westlake will break so many state records that the local deli will name a pastrami sandwich after her. Eric Sondheimer Columnist, Los Angeles Times, "2021 predictions: Eric Sondheimer peers into the crystal ball," 1 Jan. 2021 Before settling on Chase, some commissioners sought to include Taylor as well and name the circle after both women jointly. Jeff Adelson,, "Lee Circle would be Leah Chase Circle under official advice to rename New Orleans streets," 24 Nov. 2020 Her parents had planned to name her after her father, Arnold Rich, a Jewish pathologist from Alabama, who had earned a research-and-teaching position at Johns Hopkins University. Maggie Doherty, The New Yorker, "The Long Awakening of Adrienne Rich," 23 Nov. 2020 So after his 11-member committee returns with a list of women with local ties deserving of the honor, Levin plans to draft legislation to present to Congress, which has the authority to name federal property after people. Diane Bell Columnist, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Column: Could a major S.D. VA facility be re-named to honor a woman?," 16 Nov. 2020 People debated whether to name it after Kennedy or Kentucky Congressman Brent Spence. Julia Fair, The Enquirer, "Brent Spence Bridge: Timeline of trying to fund the $2.5 billion project," 16 Nov. 2020 My grandson and his wife are now expecting their first child, a boy, and in keeping with their desire to embrace family heritage, have decided to name the baby after me. Washington Post, "Miss Manners: Scolding grocery store rule-breakers doesn’t help," 13 Nov. 2020 The couple sat in their car in the caravan of Colombian Americans, celebrating the fact that Miami-Dade commissioners voted to name part of a street after former Colombian President Alvaro Uribe Velez. Brittny Mejia, Anchorage Daily News, "Florida is the ultimate Latino melting pot, and these voters could decide the election," 1 Nov. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Although pancake mix and syrup are not sold out in most stores, most popular or name brand items are harder to come by. Dallas News, "Here’s what’s low or out of stock at North Texas grocery stores," 26 Apr. 2020

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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1598, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for name

Noun and Verb

Middle English, from Old English nama; akin to Old High German namo name, Latin nomen, Greek onoma, onyma

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Time Traveler for name

Time Traveler

The first known use of name was before the 12th century

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Statistics for name

Last Updated

6 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Name.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for name


How to pronounce name (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of name

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: a word or phrase that refers to or that can refer to a specific person
: a word or phrase that refers to a specific place or thing
: a word or phrase that refers to a type or group of things



English Language Learners Definition of name (Entry 2 of 3)

: to give a name to (someone or something)
: to say the name of (someone or something)
: to choose (someone) to be (something)

English Language Learners Definition of name (Entry 3 of 3)

chiefly US : having a well-known name and good reputation


\ ˈnām How to pronounce name (audio) \

Kids Definition of name

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : a word or combination of words by which a person or thing is known
2 : reputation sense 2 She made a name for herself in the restaurant business.
3 : a word or phrase used to describe and insult someone Stop calling me names!


named; naming

Kids Definition of name (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : to choose a word or words by which something will be known : give a name to They plan to name the baby Diana.
2 : to refer to by the word by which a person or thing is known : call by name Can you name all the state capitals?
3 : to appoint to a job of authority Our principal was named superintendent of schools.
4 : to decide on Have you named the date for your wedding?
5 : mention entry 2 Just name your price.
6 : to choose to be Their son was named student of the year.

Kids Definition of name (Entry 3 of 3)

: well-known because of wide distribution That store doesn't sell name brands.

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Comments on name

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