nar·​rate | \ˈner-ˌāt, ˈna-ˌrat, na-ˈrāt \
narrated; narrating

Definition of narrate 

transitive verb

: to tell (a story) in detail The children enjoyed the lively manner with which she narrated her life's story. also : to provide spoken commentary for (something, such as a movie or television show) The documentary is narrated by a famous actor.

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Other Words from narrate

narrator \ ˈner-​ˌā-​tər , ˈna-​ˌrā-​, na-​ˈrā-​, nə-​ ; ˈner-​ə-​, ˈna-​rə-​ \ noun

Examples of narrate in a Sentence

The author narrates her story in great detail. a documentary narrated by a famous actor

Recent Examples on the Web

And even better—Amazon members can listen to the audiobook, narrated by Mr. Demo Day himself, through Audible. Jessica Leigh Mattern, Country Living, "'Fixer Upper' Fans Have a Lot to Say About This Flash Sale on Chip Gaines' Book," 4 Sep. 2018 One of my goals is to help bring classical music to a wider audience, which is why my pieces are narrated. Leila Cobo, Billboard, "Sony/ATV Latin President Jorge Mejia On Writing Music Memoir, Composing His Own Works, Going on Tour and Snagging 'Despacito' Writers," 29 June 2018 His resumé included work for the Academy Awards, the Olympics, Time-Life videos, movie trailers and 15 years narrating Navy training films. Daily Pilot Staff,, "Former Pageant of the Masters narrator Skip Conover dies at 80," 22 June 2018 In January, the insurgents released a video of Narvaez, with an extremist narrating an appeal for the payment of her release. Fox News, "Al-Qaida's Mali branch releases video of 2 female hostages," 13 June 2018 Senator Bernie Sanders has traveled to Iowa and narrated a 30-second ad to endorse one congressional candidate and journeyed to Allentown, Pa., on behalf of another. Matt Viser,, "Bernie Sanders hasn’t endorsed his candidate son," 7 June 2018 What the ad says: The ad is narrated by Yara Cheikh, an activist on education issues in the county and supporter of Brochin’s campaign. Pamela Wood,, "Ad watch: Brochin TV ad in Baltimore County executive's race touts accomplishments," 9 June 2018 The book is narrated by our president-hero, an I’m-going-take-things-into-my-own-hands kind of guy. Jocelyn Mcclurg, USA TODAY, "'The President Is Missing'! Can superhero prez save the day in Clinton/Patterson thriller?," 3 June 2018 The novel is narrated by Michael Simmons, Maggie’s friend and business manager, whose feelings about the hauntings transform from uneasy skepticism to unrestrained horror. Sam Sacks, WSJ, "Fiction Chronicle: Under West Indian Eyes," 18 May 2018

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

1656, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for narrate

Latin narratus, past participle of narrare, from Latin gnarus knowing; akin to Latin gnoscere, noscere to know — more at know

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Statistics for narrate

Last Updated

12 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for narrate

The first known use of narrate was in 1656

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More Definitions for narrate



English Language Learners Definition of narrate

: to tell (a story)

: to say the words that are heard as part of (a movie, television show, etc.) and that describe what is being seen : to do the narration for (something)


nar·​rate | \ˈner-ˌāt, na-ˈrāt\
narrated; narrating

Kids Definition of narrate

: to tell in full detail Let me narrate the story of my adventure.

Other Words from narrate

narrator \ ˈner-​ˌā-​tər, na-​ˈrā-​ \ noun

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Comments on narrate

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


an inexhaustible supply or amount

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