ped·​i·​gree | \ ˈpe-də-ˌgrē \

Definition of pedigree

1 : a register recording a line of ancestors The pedigree traces the family back to the 18th century.
2a : an ancestral line : lineage That horse has an impressive pedigree.
b : the origin and the history of something Democracy's pedigree stretches back to ancient Greece. broadly : background, history
3a : a distinguished ancestry actions spoke louder than pedigrees in the trenches— Dixon Wecter
b : the recorded purity of breed of an individual or strain vouch for a horse's pedigree

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Other Words from pedigree

pedigreed \ ˈpe-​də-​ˌgrēd \ or pedigree adjective

Examples of pedigree in a Sentence

That horse has an impressive pedigree. What is the dog's pedigree? The puppy came with papers proving its pedigree. Democracy is an idea with a pedigree stretching back to ancient Greece. The company has an excellent pedigree with over a century in the business.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Appropriately, the setting—its extravagant architecture, its rich pedigree, its juxtaposition of the classical and contemporary—is reflected in his intricate precious metal marvels. Town & Country, "The Secret Worlds of Milan’s Design Illuminati," 21 Sep. 2018 Domaine Sauvete Sauvignon 2017 ★★½ Touraine, Loire Valley, France, $15 This sauvignon blanc performs well above its common pedigree, a simple Touraine going to the fancy castle ball and wowing the crowd. Dave Mcintyre, The Seattle Times, "These sauvignon blancs taste more expensive than they are," 6 Aug. 2018 Bourdain became a household name as a TV personality, as well known for his far-flung travels as his culinary pedigree, starting with a short run from 2002 to 2003 as host on A Cook’s Tour. Rachel King, Fortune, "Anthony Bourdain, Emmy-Winning TV Host, Chef, and Author, Dead at 61," 8 June 2018 Park won on her second try for president in 2013, boosted by her political pedigree, which attracted supporters nostalgic for a past era. Matt Stiles,, "Ousted South Korean President Park Geun-hye is sentenced to 24 years in prison," 6 Apr. 2018 The Spinsters of San Francisco, a nonprofit with a prestigious pedigree. Bella Depaulo,, "Think single people are selfish? The research proves otherwise," 26 May 2018 Newsome is one of the city's best chefs, with an unmatched pedigree that includes training with six winners of James Beard Awards, the top honor in American restaurants. Eric Velasco,, "Ollie Irene restaurant is back and better than ever," 20 Mar. 2018 At Gracie University, the family teaches Brazilian jiu-jitsu to more than a thousand students — a few with NFL pedigree. Mike Vorel, The Seattle Times, "How did Seahawks pass-rusher Jacob Martin prepare for his rookie season? Jiu-jitsu.," 28 Nov. 2018 Art-Is-In Bakery is an edgy, character-rich gastro-bakery serving up pastries with a serious pedigree. Destination Canada, Bon Appetit, "A Cyclist’s Guide to Ottawa’s Culinary Scene," 9 Apr. 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for pedigree

Middle English pedegru, from Anglo-French pé de grue, literally, crane's foot; from the shape made by the lines of a genealogical chart

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Statistics for pedigree

Last Updated

31 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for pedigree

The first known use of pedigree was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for pedigree



English Language Learners Definition of pedigree

: the history of the family members in a person's or animal's past especially when it is good or impressive

: the origin and history of something especially when it is good or impressive


ped·​i·​gree | \ ˈpe-də-ˌgrē \

Kids Definition of pedigree

1 : a table or list showing the line of ancestors of a person or animal
2 : a line of ancestors


ped·​i·​gree | \ ˈped-ə-ˌgrē \

Medical Definition of pedigree

: a record of the ancestry of an individual the pedigree of a diabetic patient

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Comments on pedigree

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


to gather or build up little by little

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  • three-bears-two-of-them-look-like-theyre-whispering-to-a-third-bear-who-looks-chuffed-to-be-the-center-of-attention
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