Definition of reciprocal
- the reciprocal devastation of nuclear war
- agreed to extend reciprocal privileges to each other's citizens
- reciprocal trade agreements
the two nations agreed to give reciprocal work rights to each other's citizens, thus facilitating the daily border crossings of workers from both countries
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'reciprocal.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
In Latin, reciprocus means "returning the same way" or "alternating". So in a reciprocating engine, like the one in your car, the pistons move back and forth, and that motion is transformed into the rotary motion of the crankshaft. A reciprocal is a pair of numbers (such as 5/6 and 6/5) that can be multiplied to produce 1. Reciprocity (with the accent on the third syllable) between two nations means they agree to recognize certain things granted in one country as being valid in the other—for example, your driver's license.
First Known Use: 1570See Words from the same year
What made you want to look up reciprocal? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).
feeling or showing sorrow and remorse
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