ref·​er·​en·​tial | \ ˌre-fə-ˈren(t)-shəl How to pronounce referential (audio) \

Definition of referential

: of, containing, or constituting a reference especially : pointing to or involving a referent referential language referential meaning

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Other Words from referential

referentiality \ ˌre-​fə-​ˌren(t)-​shē-​ˈa-​lə-​tē How to pronounce referentiality (audio) \ noun
referentially \ ˌre-​fə-​ˈren(t)-​sh(ə-​)lē How to pronounce referentially (audio) \ adverb

Examples of referential in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Beyond these plot tweaks, however, the show made a bolder move, cross-hatching the narrative with self-referential inventions, frame inside frame inside frame. Steven Strogatz, The New Yorker, "“Jane the Virgin” Is Not a Guilty Pleasure," 6 Mar. 2018 This year would have been an apt time to show up since Taylor does have her campy, self-referential, pseudo-serious moments. Claire Dodson, Teen Vogue, "Why Didn’t Taylor Swift, Rihanna, and Ariana Grande Attend Met Gala 2019?," 7 May 2019 Astro Bot is extremely self-referential, and tells us almost nothing about the future of VR. Sam Byford, The Verge, "PlayStation VR has had a quietly awesome year," 20 Dec. 2018 Now though, Uchis is setting aside those iconic logos in favor of something just as referential, only much more personal. Rachel Hahn, Vogue, "Will Personal Branding Replace the Logo Trend? Kali Uchis Says Yes," 14 Jan. 2019 Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is a raucous, smart, self-referential adventure. Bryan Bishop, The Verge, "Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is dazzling, hilarious, and unique," 14 Dec. 2018 For all her political concerns, then, the writer Ms. Apostol most resembles is Paul Auster, who made his name by constructing self-referential narrative puzzles. Sam Sacks, WSJ, "Fiction: The Past Is Never Dead. It’s Not Even Past," 8 Nov. 2018 Not unlike the youthful, sporty styles synonymous with the referential decade of the moment, Jenner brought the look home with a nude lip and glossy dark nails. Lauren Valenti, Vogue, "Kendall Jenner Solidifies WAG Status With Courtside 76ers Seats—And Major Throwback Hair," 2 Jan. 2019 And keeping the media focused on a self-referential feud between Trump and the media is a way to maintain his preferred approach of trying to suck up all the oxygen in the room. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "Jim Acosta vs. the Trump White House, explained," 14 Nov. 2018

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

1660, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for referential

Last Updated

27 May 2019

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Time Traveler for referential

The first known use of referential was in 1660

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Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with referential

Comments on referential

What made you want to look up referential? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to move with exaggerated bouncy motions

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