re·​sem·​ble ri-ˈzem-bəl How to pronounce resemble (audio)
resembled; resembling ri-ˈzem-b(ə-)liŋ How to pronounce resemble (audio)

transitive verb

: to be like or similar to
he resembles his father
archaic : to represent as like

Example Sentences

He strongly resembles his father in appearance and in temperament. Terrier dogs closely resemble each other.
Recent Examples on the Web In T’Challa’s absence, Wakanda begins to resemble so many Black communities in which the women are left to mourn and then take charge after the men die, the victims of poor health or violence. Maya Phillips, New York Times, 25 Nov. 2022 Part of the reason Duggan has blossomed is TCU’s new coordinator who happens to closely resemble his older brother, the most famous quarterback whisperer in college football. Laine Higgins, WSJ, 16 Nov. 2022 The result is a system that pushes people to fall in line behind a figurehead, like Christensen, and therefore begins to resemble a traditional business ever more closely. Joel Khalili, WIRED, 10 Nov. 2022 Swedish retail giant Ikea has threatened legal action against an indie horror video game, demanding changes to its setting after the virtual location appeared to resemble the real-life furniture store a bit too closely. Alice Hearing, Fortune, 1 Nov. 2022 That changes in Ventura, which kicks System Preferences to the curb in favor of System Settings, an app with almost all the same functionality that has been rejiggered to more closely resemble the Settings app on an iPhone or iPad. Andrew Cunningham, Ars Technica, 26 Oct. 2022 Under those readiness levels, powers were granted to local authorities that closely resemble some of those under martial law. Patrick Reevell, ABC News, 22 Oct. 2022 JetBlue is reportedly planning to retrofit Spirit's planes to more closely resemble its own. Justin Klawans, The Week, 19 Oct. 2022 Mathematicians wanted to better understand these numbers that so closely resemble the most fundamental objects in number theory, the primes. Jordana Cepelewicz, Quanta Magazine, 13 Oct. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'resemble.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History


Middle English, from Anglo-French resembler, from re- + sembler to be like, seem, from Latin similare to copy, from similis like — more at same

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of resemble was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near resemble

Cite this Entry

“Resemble.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition



re·​sem·​ble ri-ˈzem-bəl How to pronounce resemble (audio)
resembled; resembling -b(ə-)liŋ How to pronounce resemble (audio)
: to be like or similar to
he resembles his father
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

Commonly Confused Words Quiz

  • vector image of a face with thought expression
  • I went to the ______ store to buy a birthday card.
Name That Thing

You know what it looks like… but what is it called?

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.