res·o·nate | \ˈre-zə-ˌnāt \
resonated; resonating

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

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Synonyms for resonate


echo, reecho, resound, reverberate, sound

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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

Clearly, Whitney knew the kind of movies that would resonate with young audiences and put her support and money behind them. Kara Nesvig, Teen Vogue, "Netflix Just Realized Whitney Houston Produced "The Princess Diaries"," 10 July 2018 The Swiss Institute wanted to relocate to a neighborhood where its forward-thinking mission would resonate. Joseph Giovannini, New York Times, "Swiss Institute Has a New Home Ready-Made for Art," 28 June 2018 Cordeiro knew that the prospect of cold, hard cash would resonate in FIFA. Grant Wahl,, "World Cup 2026 Vote Provides the Jolt U.S. Soccer Sorely Needed," 13 June 2018 That gives me a lot of confidence that our products resonate in that market. Hang Nguyen,, "Urban Remedy, the health-conscious Bay Area eatery, expands into San Diego County," 29 May 2018 Morehead City Councilman Tom Carew said that Ermold worked hard — and his message resonated in Morehead, one of Kentucky’s first cities to adopt a fairness ordinance. Andrew Wolfson, The Courier-Journal, "Gay candidate's election loss more about local politics than Kim Davis," 23 May 2018 Williams&Kalvin appears to be one of the pages that tested which messages would resonate most with audiences. Issie Lapowsky, WIRED, "House Democrats Release 3,300 Russia-Linked Facebook Ads," 10 May 2018 The burden will be on Cordray to show that his populist message and soft-spoken persona can resonate in a state where Republicans have held the governorship for all but four years since the early 1990s. Author: Jonathan Martin, Alexander Burns, Anchorage Daily News, "Party mavericks rebuffed at the polls in primary elections," 9 May 2018 In the months since her bruising electoral loss, however, Clinton has taken small steps back into the limelight, recalibrating her public persona to resonate in the Trump age. Isobel Thompson, The Hive, "Can Hillary Clinton Break the Internet?," 23 Apr. 2018

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.

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First Known Use of resonate

1873, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

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Statistics for resonate

Last Updated

23 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for resonate

The first known use of resonate was in 1873

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More Definitions for resonate



English Language Learners Definition of resonate

: to continue to produce a loud, clear, deep sound for a long time

: to have particular meaning or importance for someone : to affect or appeal to someone in a personal or emotional way

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Comments on resonate

What made you want to look up resonate? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


exaggeratedly or childishly emotional

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