representative

adjective
rep·​re·​sen·​ta·​tive | \ ˌre-pri-ˈzen-tə-tiv How to pronounce representative (audio) \

Definition of representative

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : serving to represent
2a : standing or acting for another especially through delegated authority
b : of, based on, or constituting a government in which the many are represented by persons chosen from among them usually by election
3 : serving as a typical or characteristic example a representative moviegoer
4 : of or relating to representation or representationalism

representative

noun

Definition of representative (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : one that represents another or others: such as
a(1) : one that represents a constituency as a member of a legislative body
(2) : a member of the house of representatives of the U.S. Congress or a state legislature
b : one that represents another as agent, deputy, substitute, or delegate usually being invested with the authority of the principal
c : one that represents a business organization
d : one that represents another as successor or heir
2 : a typical example of a group, class, or quality : specimen

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Other Words from representative

Adjective

representatively adverb
representativeness noun
representativity \ ˌre-​pri-​ˌzen-​tə-​ˈti-​və-​tē How to pronounce representative (audio) \ noun

Examples of representative in a Sentence

Adjective The paintings are representative of English art in the early 19th century. The students chosen for the survey are a fairly representative sample of college students from across the U.S. Noun Do you know who your representatives are? The bill was introduced by Representative Smith. a representative of her age group
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective White Kentuckians account for about 87% of the received doses, a number that is representative of their population percentage. Sarah Ladd, The Courier-Journal, "Lonnie Ali, Muhammad Ali's widow, gets COVID-19 vaccine, calls it 'an act of patriotism'," 3 Mar. 2021 The participants were selected to be representative of the U.S.’s population as a whole and the researchers collected data on how often participants followed Covid-19 prevention recommendations. Victoria Forster, Forbes, "Americans In Rural Areas Less Likely To Follow Covid-19 Prevention Measures Than Those In Urban Areas," 26 Feb. 2021 The character is not based on a real man, but is representative of the various Black Panthers who faced police violence. Nick Allen, Vulture, "Who’s Who in Judas and the Black Messiah: A Character Guide," 13 Feb. 2021 The results are preliminary and because only in around 10% of all the cases in the U.K. is the virus variant known, may not be representative of the population as a whole. Max Colchester, WSJ, "U.K. Coronavirus Variant Probed for Increased Risk to Younger People," 26 Jan. 2021 Some researchers question how effectively blood donor studies can be used to estimate the true extent of Covid-19’s spread, in particular because blood donors are not representative of the nation as a whole. Nathaniel Scharping, Smithsonian Magazine, "What Scientists Are Learning About Covid-19 Using the Nation’s Blood Supply," 21 Jan. 2021 Like the color white, purple is also representative of women's suffrage. Kelsey Stiegman, Seventeen, "Kamala Harris' Niece Meena Harris and Stepdaughter Ella Emhoff Accidentally Match for Inauguration," 20 Jan. 2021 With a tumultuous year now behind us, RoomMates has also opted for a color that is representative of optimism and joy. Danielle Harling, House Beautiful, "RoomMates Decor Embraces Optimism With Its Green Aloe Pick for Color of the Year," 10 Jan. 2021 Teachers on average have been able to get in contact with four out of five students this fall, according to a recent nationally representative survey of educators by RAND. Kristen Taketa, San Diego Union-Tribune, "For many teachers, distance learning is a constant fight to get students to engage," 6 Dec. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun State lawmakers such as Bob Morgan, a Democratic representative from suburban Chicago, rejected Miller’s denials. Kim Bellware, Anchorage Daily News, "‘Three percenters’ truck at Capitol belongs to husband of congresswoman who said, ‘Hitler got one thing right’," 28 Feb. 2021 State lawmakers such as Bob Morgan, a Democratic representative from suburban Chicago, rejected Miller’s denials. Washington Post, "‘Three percenters’ truck at Capitol belongs to husband of congresswoman who said, ‘Hitler got one thing right’," 28 Feb. 2021 Lemonis fought to get one representative from each MLB club in for Mississippi State’s home games. Evan Grant, Dallas News, "The Rangers can’t miss in this year’s MLB draft. Luckily, many of the nation’s top prospects are passing through Arlington.," 25 Feb. 2021 After flying into Belize City, you’ll be greeted by a representative from Cayo Espanto who will escort you onto a local flight aboard Tropic Air to San Pedro, which is about a fifteen minute ride. Michelle Stansbury, Marie Claire, "The Instagram Guide to Cayo Espanto," 23 Feb. 2021 In a discussion on Monday in Israel's foreign affairs and defense committee, Chairman Zvi Hauser asked a representative from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's National Security Council for details on the vaccine transfer policy. Joseph Krauss, Star Tribune, "Palestinians say Israel blocks shipment of vaccines to Gaza," 15 Feb. 2021 Among the presenters will be Medina’s own Kristin Gambaccini from perfectlydestressed.com, Tessa Kaminski from editandvibe.com and a representative from Greenkeepers Landscaping and Lawn Care. Alyssa Alfano, cleveland, "Prepare for spring at the virtual Medina County Home and Garden Show," 15 Feb. 2021 The prison system is limiting media witnesses to one journalist, a representative from The Associated Press. Fox News, "Alabama execution canceled after inmate’s fight for pastor in chamber," 12 Feb. 2021 The bill establishes a nine-member Citizens Health Advisory Board that would consist of appointees from state, city, county, and school leaders, along with a representative from the Birmingham Business Alliance. al, "State lawmakers want to change the way Alabama handles future lockdowns," 7 Feb. 2021

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

Adjective

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1635, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for representative

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for representative

Last Updated

5 Mar 2021

Cite this Entry

“Representative.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/representative. Accessed 7 Mar. 2021.

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More Definitions for representative

representative

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of representative

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: typical of a particular group of people or of a particular thing
: including examples of the different types of people or things in a group
: having people who are chosen in elections to act or speak for or in support of the people who voted for them

representative

noun

English Language Learners Definition of representative (Entry 2 of 2)

: someone who acts or speaks for or in support of another person or group
: a member of the House of Representatives of the U.S. Congress or of a state government
: a person or thing that is typical of a group

representative

adjective
rep·​re·​sen·​ta·​tive | \ ˌre-pri-ˈzen-tə-tiv How to pronounce representative (audio) \

Kids Definition of representative

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : serving to portray The painting is representative of a battle.
2 : carried on by people elected to act for others a representative government
3 : being a typical example of the thing mentioned This song is representative of the blues.

representative

noun

Kids Definition of representative (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a typical example (as of a group or class)
2 : a person who acts for others (as in a legislature and especially in the House of Representatives of the United States or of a state)

representative

adjective
rep·​re·​sen·​ta·​tive

Legal Definition of representative

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : serving to represent
2a : standing or acting for another especially through delegated authority an agent acting in a representative capacity
b : of, based on, or constituting a government in which the people are represented by individuals chosen from among them usually by election
3 : of or relating to representation

representative

noun

Legal Definition of representative (Entry 2 of 2)

: one that represents another or others in a special capacity: as
a : one that represents a constituency as a member of a legislative or other governing body specifically : a member of the House of Representatives of the U.S. Congress or a state legislature
b : one that represents another as agent, deputy, substitute, or delegate and that usually is invested with the authority of the principal
c : one that represents or stands in the place of a deceased person : personal representative
d : one that represents another as successor or heir
e : one named as the plaintiff or defendant in a class action to litigate on behalf of the class

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Comments on representative

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