rat·i·fy | \ ˈra-tə-ˌfī \
ratified; ratifying

Definition of ratify 

transitive verb

: to approve and sanction formally : confirm ratify a treaty

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Other words from ratify

ratification \ˌra-tə-fə-ˈkā-shən \ noun
ratifier \ˈra-tə-ˌfī(-ə)r \ noun

Examples of ratify in a Sentence

A number of countries have refused to ratify the treaty. Lincoln's home state of Illinois was the first to ratify the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which provided for the abolition of slavery.

Recent Examples on the Web

The cases are so flimsy that President Fuad Masum has refrained from ratifying many executions, which is required by law before they can be carried out, a senior official in the president's office told the AP. Hamza Hendawi, Fox News, "A neighbor's word can bring death sentence in Iraq IS trials," 9 July 2018 By a tally of 1,776 to 131, the workers who chose to vote on the proposal ratified the contract. Mike Morris, Houston Chronicle, "Houston city council to take up contract, raises ratified by municipal workers," 27 June 2018 The Illinois House voted on May 30, 2018, to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment more than 45 years after it was approved by Congress. Susan Demar Lafferty, Daily Southtown, "Civil rights milestone or political theater? Equal Rights Amendment still divides some in the Southland," 1 June 2018 The Illinois House voted on May 30, 2018, to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment more than 45 years after it was approved by Congress. Linda Girardi, Aurora Beacon-News, "Ratification of Equal Rights Amendment about 'recognition of human rights,' Aurora-area lawmakers say," 1 June 2018 The Illinois House voted on May 30, 2018, to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment more than 45 years after it was approved by Congress. Kimberly Fornek, chicagotribune.com, "Hinsdale state Rep. Patti Bellock explains why she voted against the Equal Rights Amendment," 1 June 2018 If the deal is ratified after this month, the agreed upon pay increases would take effect retroactive to Aug. 1. Kelly Yamanouchi, ajc, "Weekend deliveries, new technology addressed in UPS-Teamsters deal," 11 July 2018 The United States, however, has not ratified the 1992 Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), to which the 2010 Nagoya Protocol is a supplementary agreement, and would not be bound by changes to the protocol. Kai Kupferschmidt, Science | AAAS, "Plan to amend biopiracy rules would ‘smother research,’ biologists warn," 3 July 2018 The Nagoya Protocol, ratified by 97 parties and in force as of 2014, attempted to lay out a system of standards for monetizing biodiversity within national jurisdictions. Ryan P. Smith, Smithsonian, "Nearly Half the Patents on Marine Genes Belong to Just One Company," 13 June 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for ratify

Middle English ratifien, from Anglo-French ratifier, from Medieval Latin ratificare, from Latin ratus determined, from past participle of reri to calculate — more at reason

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Statistics for ratify

Last Updated

1 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for ratify

The first known use of ratify was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for ratify



English Language Learners Definition of ratify

: to make (a treaty, agreement, etc.) official by signing it or voting for it


rat·i·fy | \ ˈra-tə-fī \
ratified; ratifying

Kids Definition of ratify

: to give legal approval to (as by a vote)

rat·i·fy | \ ˈra-tə-ˌfī \
ratified; ratifying

Legal Definition of ratify 

: to make valid or effective especially : to adopt or affirm (as the prior act or contract of an agent) by express or implied consent with the effect of original authorization unable to rescind the contract because he ratified it by accepting the benefits — compare reform

Other words from ratify

ratification \ˌra-tə-fə-ˈkā-shən \ noun
ratifier \ˈra-tə-ˌfī-ər \ noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on ratify

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for ratify

Spanish Central: Translation of ratify

Nglish: Translation of ratify for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of ratify for Arabic Speakers

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