pro·​po·​nent prə-ˈpō-nənt How to pronounce proponent (audio)
: one who argues in favor of something : advocate

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Proponent comes from the same Latin word as propose, so a proponent is someone who proposes something, or at least supports it by speaking and writing in favor of it. Thus, for example, proponents of casinos argue that they create jobs, whereas proponents of a casino ban—that is, casino opponents—argue that they're corrupting and they take money away from people who can't afford it. As a rule, just about anything important that gets proposed also gets opposed.

Examples of proponent in a Sentence

a vocal proponent of the use of electric-powered cars
Recent Examples on the Web The National Book Award winner’s passionate reporting on the permeation of racist ideas throughout American history riled up conservative proponents, leading to three of Kendi’s tomes being banned in six school districts across multiple states. Kalia Richardson, Rolling Stone, 22 Nov. 2023 She is also known as a big proponent of crypto and blockchain technology. Vicky Ge Huang, WSJ, 15 Nov. 2023 The Biden administration’s FTC is in support of right to repair, but proponents say more aggressive action is needed to outpace the tech industry. Amrita Khalid, The Verge, 14 Nov. 2023 Sapolsky sometimes gets a bit frustrated with free-will proponents. Diana Gitig, Ars Technica, 12 Nov. 2023 For more than 100 years, proponents and opponents of daylight saving time have argued over whether to keep observing the twice-yearly changing of the clocks, but many don't know how or why the U.S. started the custom in the first place. Cara Tabachnick, CBS News, 3 Nov. 2023 Johnson was a vocal proponent of Trump's false claims that the 2020 election was stolen, leading an amicus brief supporting a Texas lawsuit aimed at tossing out results from four critical states. Bridget Bowman, NBC News, 14 Nov. 2023 Nutter was a vocal proponent of stop-and-frisk, as part of a larger program of crime deterrence. Eliza Griswold, The New Yorker, 10 Nov. 2023 But once Israel’s bombardment of Gaza began, with images of multi-story residential buildings collapsing in smoke and bodies being pulled from rubble, several Arab states became the most vocal proponents of an immediate cease-fire. Tracy Wilkinson, Los Angeles Times, 10 Nov. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'proponent.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Latin proponent-, proponens, present participle of proponere

First Known Use

1588, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of proponent was in 1588

Dictionary Entries Near proponent

Cite this Entry

“Proponent.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 6 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


pro·​po·​nent prə-ˈpō-nənt How to pronounce proponent (audio)
: one who argues in favor of something
a proponent of recycling

Legal Definition


pro·​po·​nent prə-ˈpō-nənt How to pronounce proponent (audio)
: one who argues in favor of something
: one who offers a will for probate

More from Merriam-Webster on proponent

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