rel·​e·​vance | \ ˈre-lə-vən(t)s How to pronounce relevance (audio) \

Definition of relevance

1a : relation to the matter at hand
b : practical and especially social applicability : pertinence giving relevance to college courses
2 : the ability (as of an information retrieval system) to retrieve material that satisfies the needs of the user

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Examples of relevance in a Sentence

I appreciate that you did the dishes tonight, but that has no relevance to my enforcement of the punishment you got earlier this week.
Recent Examples on the Web The next year, ToxStrategies released another study that found that liver damage in mice exposed to GenX had limited relevance to humans. New York Times, 20 Oct. 2021 Mikimoto seeks to maintain the importance and relevance of pearls regardless of age and gender through fine jewelry that emphasizes the beauty of pearls and the character of the Mikimoto brand. Blue Carreon, Forbes, 20 Oct. 2021 But this institutional failure is only the latest in the WTO’s long-term decline in effectiveness and relevance. Nicholas Phillips, National Review, 19 Oct. 2021 While veteran acts like Maroon 5 have brazenly owned their hunger for radio hits, Coldplay has juggled the often conflicting goals of credibility and relevance with an unusually deft touch. Mike Wass, Variety, 15 Oct. 2021 The judge said the evidence had limited relevance to the murder case and risked creating greater prejudice against Flores. CBS News, 22 Sep. 2021 The judge said the evidence had limited relevance to the murder case and risked creating greater prejudice against Flores. NBC News, 22 Sep. 2021 Of course, the group’s fashion relevance extends beyond their devotees. Vogue, 8 Oct. 2021 Needless to say, the quality and relevance of your creative is hugely important to the success of your advertising campaigns. Ralph Burns, Forbes, 7 Oct. 2021

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

1787, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Time Traveler for relevance

Time Traveler

The first known use of relevance was in 1787

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Last Updated

25 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Relevance.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Oct. 2021.

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More Definitions for relevance


rel·​e·​vance | \ ˈre-lə-vəns How to pronounce relevance (audio) \

Kids Definition of relevance

: relation to the matter at hand Your comments lack relevance.


rel·​e·​vance | \ ˈre-lə-vəns How to pronounce relevance (audio) \

Legal Definition of relevance

: the quality or state of being relevant : relation to the matter at hand ruled on the relevance of the testimony relevance in discovery has been broadly interpreted

More from Merriam-Webster on relevance

Nglish: Translation of relevance for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of relevance for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about relevance


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