reciprocal

adjective
re·​cip·​ro·​cal | \ ri-ˈsi-prə-kəl How to pronounce reciprocal (audio) \

Definition of reciprocal

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : inversely related : opposite
b : of, constituting, or resulting from paired crosses in which the kind that supplies the male parent of the first cross supplies the female parent of the second cross and vice versa
2 : shared, felt, or shown by both sides
3 : serving to reciprocate : consisting of or functioning as a return in kind the reciprocal devastation of nuclear war
4a : mutually corresponding agreed to extend reciprocal privileges to each other's citizens
b : marked by or based on reciprocity reciprocal trade agreements

reciprocal

noun

Definition of reciprocal (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : something in a reciprocal relationship to another
2 : either of a pair of numbers (such as ²/₃ and ³/₂ or 9 and ¹/₉) whose product is one broadly : multiplicative inverse

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Other Words from reciprocal

Adjective

reciprocally \ ri-​ˈsi-​prə-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce reciprocally (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for reciprocal

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Did You Know?

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.

Examples of reciprocal in a Sentence

Adjective 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
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective What’s more, blood-sharing tends to be reciprocal, with bats more likely to provide a meal to a partner that has shared with them in the past. National Geographic, "See the Full Archive," 19 Mar. 2020 But what is most remarkable about the Moltkes, more than their courage or faith, two aspects of character that are reciprocal, is their gratitude regardless of their circumstances. Mary Spencer, National Review, "What Real Resistance Looks Like," 29 Feb. 2020 To encourage reciprocal treatment of U.S. diplomats trapped abroad, Roosevelt sent Axis diplomats to remote luxury hotels—a move that enraged Americans stunned by the attack. Harvey Solomon, Smithsonian Magazine, "When the Greenbrier and Other Appalachian Resorts Became Prisons for Axis Diplomats," 21 Feb. 2020 The rights and responsibilities of parents and their adult children are reciprocal. New York Times, "What Should I Do About the Workaholic Who Works for Me?," 26 Nov. 2019 Raising tariffs against one country or region is inevitably reciprocal, costing both sides valuable markets for their goods or production. David A. Andelman For Cnn Business Perspectives, CNN, "Trump is taking us back to depression-era trade policy," 30 Aug. 2019 The deal, which is designed to broaden the reach of Chocolate City's roster of artists across the world, includes a strategic, reciprocal marketing agreement with WMG South Africa. Chris Eggertsen, Billboard, "Warner Music Group Announces Partnership With Nigerian Label Chocolate City," 28 Mar. 2019 Reliance, the essential component of these agreements, has two main types: reciprocal and unidirectional. Katherine C. Bond, STAT, "For medicine regulators, reliance is a global imperative," 27 Feb. 2020 What archaeologists disagree on, often vehemently, is whether that relationship was peaceful and reciprocal or was based on violence and domination. Lizzie Wade, Science | AAAS, "‘Astounding new finds’ suggest ancient empire may be hiding in plain sight," 27 Feb. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun For now, one hint that TKV may have an edge is that the reciprocals of the series of angles produced by the model, unlike those in the older model, follow a nearly periodic progression. Quanta Magazine, "What’s the Magic Behind Graphene’s ‘Magic’ Angle?," 28 May 2019

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.

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First Known Use of reciprocal

Adjective

1570, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Noun

1570, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for reciprocal

Adjective

Latin reciprocus returning the same way, alternating

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Time Traveler for reciprocal

Time Traveler

The first known use of reciprocal was in 1570

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Statistics for reciprocal

Last Updated

29 Mar 2020

Cite this Entry

“Reciprocal.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/reciprocal. Accessed 10 Apr. 2020.

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More Definitions for reciprocal

reciprocal

adjective
How to pronounce reciprocal (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of reciprocal

used to describe a relationship in which two people or groups agree to do something similar for each other, to allow each other to have the same rights, etc.

reciprocal

noun
re·​cip·​ro·​cal | \ ri-ˈsi-prə-kəl How to pronounce reciprocal (audio) \

Kids Definition of reciprocal

: one of a pair of numbers (as 9 and ¹/₉, ²/₃ and ³/₂) whose product is one

reciprocal

adjective
re·​cip·​ro·​cal | \ ri-ˈsip-rə-kəl How to pronounce reciprocal (audio) \

Medical Definition of reciprocal

1 : inversely related
2 : of, constituting, or resulting from paired crosses in which the kind that supplies the male parent of the first cross supplies the female parent of the second cross and vice versa
3 : shared, felt, or shown by both sides

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reciprocal

adjective
re·​cip·​ro·​cal | \ ri-ˈsi-prə-kəl How to pronounce reciprocal (audio) \

Legal Definition of reciprocal

b : bilateral a reciprocal contract
2 : characterized by correspondence or equivalence especially in return or response with another of the same category an … agreement permitting the reciprocal use of each other's landIngham v. Block, 351 S.W.3d 96 (2011) also : marked by such correspondence or equivalence between its own components a reciprocal arrangement
3 : marked by reciprocity between states

Other Words from reciprocal

reciprocally adverb

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Comments on reciprocal

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