res·​o·​nate | \ ˈre-zə-ˌnāt How to pronounce resonate (audio) \
resonated; resonating

Essential Meaning of resonate

1 : to continue to produce a loud, clear, deep sound for a long time The siren resonated throughout the city.
2 : to have particular meaning or importance for someone : to affect or appeal to someone in a personal or emotional way

Full Definition of resonate

intransitive verb

1 : to produce or exhibit resonance
2 : to respond as if by resonance resonate to the music also : to have a repetitive pattern that resembles resonance
3 : to relate harmoniously : strike a chord a message that resonates with voters

transitive verb

: to subject to resonating

Synonyms for resonate


Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Resonate vs. Reverberate

Resonate and reverberate each have at least one meaning that is concerned with sound, and they carry a degree of overlap in their definitions. However, there are some subtle differences between them that are worth observing. Resonate typically suggests that a single lasting sound is produced; reverberate, on the other hand, indicates that an initial sound is followed by a series of echoes. In terms of the contexts in which they are used, resonate often involves a person (“that passage of the book resonated with many young readers”); reverberate, on the other hand, is more likely to be used of a thing, such as the aftermath of some major event (“the shock caused by the assassination reverberated across Europe”).

Examples of resonate in a Sentence

The siren resonated throughout the city. the deep sounds of the bassoon resonated through the concert hall
Recent Examples on the Web But the president’s vision of transformational change continues to resonate among many voters who view him as a paternal figure. Leila Miller Staff Writer, Los Angeles Times, 3 Dec. 2021 Shows here feel deeply authentic and resonate with listeners on an emotional level. Joni Sweet, Forbes, 3 Jan. 2022 If some of these predictions and frameworks resonate for you, great. Los Angeles Times, 30 Dec. 2021 The bakery and cafe, with a stunning new contemporary tasting menu dinner, does indeed resonate with echoes of the Philippines. Louisa Chu,, 27 Dec. 2021 His book is a relevant one, and his exploration of the power dynamics that arise on homeowners association boards will resonate with anyone who has encountered a minor Machiavelli. Michael D'antonio, CNN, 20 Dec. 2021 At the same time, there are so many new viewers [in season 29], and a retrospect may not resonate with them. Selena Barrientos, Good Housekeeping, 20 July 2021 And the generation that came after Clinton, the millennials, found out that this wasn’t true, and that the sanguine promises of their liberal parents just didn’t resonate. Isaac Chotiner, The New Yorker, 29 June 2021 The family drama is semi-autobiographical for writer-director Lee Isaac Chung, but details resonate with Yeun’s own experience emigrating as a child from Seoul, first to Saskatchewan and later Michigan. Cassidy Olsen,, 11 Feb. 2021

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

See More

First Known Use of resonate

1873, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

Learn More About resonate

Time Traveler for resonate

Time Traveler

The first known use of resonate was in 1873

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near resonate

resonant frequency



See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for resonate

Last Updated

18 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Resonate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Jan. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More from Merriam-Webster on resonate

Nglish: Translation of resonate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of resonate for Arabic Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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