par·​tic·​i·​pate | \ pär-ˈti-sə-ˌpāt How to pronounce participate (audio) , pər- \
participated; participating

Definition of participate

intransitive verb

1 : to possess some of the attributes of a person, thing, or quality the individual man participates in the ideal man— Frank Thilly
2a : to take part always participates in class discussions
b : to have a part or share in something Your mother participates in this ambition …— Edith Wharton

Other Words from participate

participator \ pär-​ˈti-​sə-​ˌpā-​tər How to pronounce participate (audio) , pər-​ \ noun

Synonyms for participate


Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Choose the Right Synonym for participate

share, participate, partake mean to have, get, or use in common with another or others. share usually implies that one as the original holder grants to another the partial use, enjoyment, or possession of a thing. shared my toys with the others participate implies a having or taking part in an undertaking, activity, or discussion. participated in sports partake implies accepting or acquiring a share especially of food or drink. partook freely of the refreshments

Examples of participate in a Sentence

Most people joined the game, but a few chose not to participate. eager to participate in the city's cultural life
Recent Examples on the Web The Tap Studio’s youth and adult students will be showcasing new and classic dances, and audience members will receive an open invitation to participate in the Shim Sham finale. Naomi Stock, Anchorage Daily News, 5 May 2022 Another speaker told of how Koslen-Freireich rewrote scripts to ensure that all participants had a line to say, and usually had double casts so that, despite the greater workload on her, more young actors had a chance to participate. cleveland, 3 May 2022 On Friday, Indonesian President Joko Widodo said Russian President Vladimir Putin had accepted an invitation to participate in the Group of 20 summit planned for fall in Bali. Los Angeles Times, 29 Apr. 2022 Flexer, a working mother, said the ability to participate remotely as a member of the public or as a public official allows local government to embrace the same flexibility adopted by many businesses as a new normal. Mark Pazniokas, Hartford Courant, 28 Apr. 2022 But in order to participate, customers must buy new furniture from them this week. Joan Meiners, The Arizona Republic, 20 Apr. 2022 Each of the 25 winners will receive $5,000 in funding as well as an invitation to participate in an awards summit at Prudential’s Newark, N.J., headquarters starting Saturday. John-john Williams Iv, Baltimore Sun, 19 Apr. 2022 Look for cultures which provide strong direction balanced with the opportunity to participate and influence, and cultures which offer clear responsibilities and policies balanced with adaptability and responsiveness. Tracy Brower, Forbes, 17 Apr. 2022 There is no cost to the city to participate in the program, which will be offered directly through lenders. Carrie Napoleon,, 12 Apr. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of participate

1531, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for participate

Latin participatus, past participle of participare, from particip-, particeps participant, from part-, pars part + capere to take — more at heave entry 1

Learn More About participate

Time Traveler for participate

Time Traveler

The first known use of participate was in 1531

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near participate

participant observer


participating bond

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for participate

Last Updated

9 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Participate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 May. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for participate


par·​tic·​i·​pate | \ pər-ˈti-sə-ˌpāt How to pronounce participate (audio) , pär- \
participated; participating

Kids Definition of participate

: to join with others in doing something

More from Merriam-Webster on participate

Nglish: Translation of participate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of participate for Arabic Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Which Word Does Not Belong?

  • one green toy robot amidst many red toy robots
  • Which of these words does not mean "nonsense"?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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