of·​fi·​ci·​ate | \ ə-ˈfi-shē-ˌāt How to pronounce officiate (audio) \
officiated; officiating

Definition of officiate

intransitive verb

1 : to perform a ceremony, function, or duty officiate at a wedding
2 : to act in an official capacity : act as an official (as at a sports contest)

transitive verb

1 : to carry out (an official duty or function)
2 : to serve as a leader or celebrant of (a ceremony)
3 : to administer the rules of (a game or sport) especially as a referee or umpire

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Other Words from officiate

officiation \ ə-​ˌfi-​shē-​ˈā-​shən How to pronounce officiate (audio) \ noun

Examples of officiate in a Sentence

The bishop officiated the memorial Mass. Two referees officiated the hockey game.
Recent Examples on the Web They were accompanied by five people, there to take photos and officiate. New York Times, 1 June 2021 Here was a guy who could eat breakfast at 6:30 a.m., play 18 holes of golf in a little more than two hours, officiate at a late-morning funeral, and celebrate Mass at a nursing home at 2 p.m., 12 May 2021 Williamson is not the first player that is difficult to officiate. Jeff Zillgitt, USA TODAY, 7 May 2021 Hower House Museum’s South Lawn - Cable will officiate ceremonies from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 4. Megan Becka, cleveland, 6 May 2021 At the same time, referee Sarah Thomas made history as the first woman to officiate a Super Bowl. ABC News, 30 Apr. 2021 Elisa Chase, international director of the nonprofit Celebrant Foundation and Institute in Montclair, N.J., noticed an uptick in requests over the past month for someone to officiate at a memorial service. Clare Ansberry, WSJ, 10 May 2021 Scott, 28, is believed to be the first Korean American to officiate in the N.B.A. New York Times, 16 Apr. 2021 Once more: Humans play the games, humans coach the games, humans officiate the games. Paul Daugherty, The Enquirer, 14 Apr. 2021

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

1623, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for officiate

borrowed from Medieval Latin officiātus, past participle of officiāre "to perform a function, perform priestly duties," going back to Late Latin officiārī "to perform a function," derivative of Latin officium "duty, office"

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Time Traveler for officiate

Time Traveler

The first known use of officiate was in 1623

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Statistics for officiate

Last Updated

17 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Officiate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for officiate



English Language Learners Definition of officiate

formal : to perform the official duties of a ceremony
sports : to be a referee, umpire, or judge at a game, tournament, etc.


of·​fi·​ci·​ate | \ ə-ˈfi-shē-ˌāt How to pronounce officiate (audio) \
officiated; officiating

Kids Definition of officiate

1 : to perform a ceremony or duty A bishop officiated at the wedding.
2 : to act as an officer : preside She officiated at the annual meeting.

More from Merriam-Webster on officiate

Nglish: Translation of officiate for Spanish Speakers


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