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 representativity (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

To win approval, the company had to run a demographically representative study proving that 97 percent of users understand that the test is not a medical recommendation, says 23andMe chief legal and regulatory officer Kathy Hibbs. Angela Chen, The Verge, "23andMe’s genetic test for how you’ll react to medication is ahead of its time," 2 Nov. 2018 Police said the baby was expected to be OK, but details on the child’s custody couldn’t be provided, pending an investigation, a children’s services representative told the paper. Stephen Sorace, Fox News, "Baby survives birth in Burger King restroom as mom OD'd on heroin, police say," 10 Aug. 2018 The election to fill Cromer's representative post is expected to be held in November. Bob Warren, NOLA.com, "With Legislature facing another special session, Slidell mayor-elect in busy transition," 5 June 2018 Each candidate may have a representative present at the recanvass, and the county board of elections shall authorize media to observe. Thomas Novelly, The Courier-Journal, "Candidate wants recanvass in judicial race won by late Danny Alvarez," 30 May 2018 Taiwan has representative offices, which act as de facto embassies, in more than 100 cities and a passport issued in Taiwan allows visa-free access to 148 countries, compared to 70 for China. Katie Hunt, CNN, "China's ramping up pressure on Taiwan," 28 May 2018 Mercado Services The company offers six e-commerce services: A representative for Amazon declined to discuss the company’s long-term plans in Latin America. Ezequiel Minaya, WSJ, "Argentinian Company Wants to Build the Amazon of Latin America," 19 Mar. 2019 Aldridge keeps streak going This season’s All-Star game is being played in Los Angeles and the Spurs once again have a representative in forward LaMarcus Aldridge. Kyle Ringo, San Antonio Express-News, "Spurs have abundance of All-Star memories," 16 Feb. 2018 Since its inception in 1959, the Grammys have emboldened musicians to experiment and make statements, resulting in a catalog of unique looks representative of both era and genre. Calin Van Paris, Vogue, "From Jennifer Lopez to Britney Spears, the Best Grammys Beauty Looks of All Time," 8 Feb. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Somali-American Muslim representative Ilhan Omar’s comments on the Israeli government’s lobbying influence in the United States are a recent example of this. Vogue, "The Viral Taylor Swift Stan Story That Made Me Love the Internet Again," 5 Apr. 2019 And don’t forget to ask your provider or insurance representative what information will show up in the online portal. Mattie Quinn, SELF, "How to Get Birth Control and STI Testing If You’re on Your Parent’s Insurance," 5 Dec. 2018 Attempts to reach representatives for Sinatra Jr. late Friday were unsuccessful. John Rogers, chicagotribune.com, "Nancy Sinatra Sr., first wife of Frank Sinatra, dies at 101," 14 July 2018 Attempts to reach representatives for Sinatra Jr. late Friday were unsuccessful. John Rogers, BostonGlobe.com, "Nancy Sinatra Sr., first wife of Frank Sinatra, dies at 101," 14 July 2018 Attempts to reach representatives for Sinatra Jr. late Friday were unsuccessful. NBC News, "Nancy Sinatra Sr., first wife of Frank Sinatra, dies at 101," 14 July 2018 However, records dating back to 2015 show that Barnes has accepted Chiefs and Royals tickets from representatives for Burns & McDonnell, Black & Veatch and Hoefer Wysocki, an architecture and design firm. Bill Turque, kansascity, "KC council members slam gift ethics plan as Jason Kander drops casual campaign video," 12 July 2018 Tartaglione’s case pitted her family of political heavyweights against another North Philadelphia political clan – the Acostas – that claims two former state representatives among its ranks. Jeremy Roebuck, Philly.com, "Philly politico Renee Tartaglione sentenced to nearly 7 years in prison," 12 July 2018 Galaxia got the Mexican consulate involved, and a consulate representative called her on Tuesday night to tell her that Julia would be released. Lucy Diavolo, Teen Vogue, "Border Patrol Detained a 9-Year-Old U.S. Citizen for Over a Day on Her Way to School," 22 Mar. 2019

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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Statistics for representative

Last Updated

24 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for representative

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

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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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