per·​son·​ate | \ ˈpər-sə-ˌnāt How to pronounce personate (audio) \
personated; personating

Definition of personate

transitive verb

b : to assume without authority and with fraudulent intent (some character or capacity)
2 : to invest with personality or personal characteristics personating their gods ridiculous, and themselves past shame— John Milton

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Other Words from personate

personation \ ˌpər-​sə-​ˈnā-​shən How to pronounce personation (audio) \ noun
personative \ ˈpər-​sə-​ˌnā-​tiv How to pronounce personative (audio) \ adjective
personator \ ˈpər-​sə-​ˌnā-​tər How to pronounce personator (audio) \ noun

Examples of personate in a Sentence

likes to personate the man of the world, but he's still the small-town hick that he always was

Recent Examples on the Web

Till’s motifs swept though the ensemble, as horns, clarinets, bassoons, violin all had a chance to personate the character. By Libby Hanssen,, "Summertime energy: Pianist Emanuel Ax performs with Kansas City Symphony at Helzberg," 3 June 2017

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

First Known Use of personate

1591, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Time Traveler for personate

The first known use of personate was in 1591

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More Definitions for personate


transitive verb
per·​son·​ate | \ ˈpərs-ᵊn-ˌāt How to pronounce personate (audio) \
personated; personating

Legal Definition of personate

More from Merriam-Webster on personate

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with personate

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for personate

Comments on personate

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


ancient or antiquated

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