rank·​ing | \ ˈraŋ-kiŋ How to pronounce ranking (audio) \

Definition of ranking

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: having a high position: such as
a : of the highest rank the ranking officer
b : being next to the chairman in seniority ranking committee member


plural rankings

Definition of ranking (Entry 2 of 2)

: position, order, or standing within a group : rank The figures, compiled from federal surveys and a tourism research concern, earned New York City a second-place ranking nationwide as a destination for United States travelers, pushing Las Vegas down to the No. 3 spot.— Eric Lipton … if a site is linked to by sites of high quality and popularity, those links can raise the ranking of the first site.— Elizabeth Stone Playing primarily in regional events, she earned a ranking of No. 151, high enough to make the qualifying field at Roland Garros.— L. Jon Wertheim … he had the lowest interception rate and the highest ranking of any NFL quarterback …— Paul Zimmerman

Examples of ranking in a Sentence

Adjective Who is the ranking officer here? the country's ranking law school
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The utilities committee's ranking minority member — Rep. Matt Pierce, D-Bloomington — led the bipartisan effort to defeat the moratorium last year. Sarah Bowman, Indianapolis Star, "Bill that could keep coal plants running longer passes out of committee, heads to House floor," 22 Jan. 2020 Other text messages show extensive contact between Parnas and Derek Harvey, an aide to Rep. Devin Nunes, the ranking Republican on the House Intelligence Committee - indicating that Nunes' office sought to use the information Parnas was gathering. Anchorage Daily News, "How Lev Parnas worked his way into Trump’s world - and now is rattling it," 19 Jan. 2020 The 14-term lawmaker is the highest ranking African American and the third highest ranking Democrat in Congress. CBS News, "Democratic 2020 candidates descend on South Carolina for Clyburn's "World Famous Fish Fry"," 19 June 2019 During that period, Frost was the highest ranking African-American alderman serving the council. Chicago Tribune Staff, chicagotribune.com, "Wilson Frost, 'giant' of Chicago City Council and prominent African-American politician, dies," 6 May 2018 Collins, the ranking Republican on the Judiciary Committee, again claimed that the president did nothing wrong because Ukraine said there was no pressure and was unaware of the hold on military aid. NBC News, "Collins: 'The people of America see through this'," 19 Dec. 2019 The ranking Republican on the House Intelligence Committee, Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Tulare, said on Fox News on Sunday that public hearings over the past two weeks have drawn in many Americans who don’t normally follow cable news. Kevin Freking, SFChronicle.com, "Schiff keeps options open on conducting more hearings in impeachment probe," 24 Nov. 2019 Schiff was referring specifically to the ranking Republican member of his committee, Devin Nunes, of California, who showed himself to be an ardent promoter of conspiracy theories in Trump’s defense during last month’s public hearings. Susan B. Glasser, The New Yorker, "“I Do Hate What He Is Doing”: Adam Schiff on Trump, Impeachment, and What’s Next," 6 Dec. 2019 The spat began when Devin Nunes, the ranking Republican member on the committee, tried to cede his time to Stefanik, and committee chairman Adam Schiff said Stefanik was not recognized under the House rules. John Mccormack, National Review, "What’s Next for Elise Stefanik?," 26 Nov. 2019

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


1847, in the meaning defined above


1836, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for ranking

Time Traveler

The first known use of ranking was in 1836

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Statistics for ranking

Last Updated

5 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Ranking.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ranking. Accessed 20 Feb. 2020.

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How to pronounce ranking (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of ranking

 (Entry 1 of 2)

chiefly US : having a high position or the highest position in a group or organization



English Language Learners Definition of ranking (Entry 2 of 2)

: a list of people or things that are ordered according to their quality, ability, size, etc.
: the position of a person or thing in the rankings

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