re·​spect | \ ri-ˈspekt How to pronounce respect (audio) \

Definition of respect

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a relation or reference to a particular thing or situation remarks having respect to an earlier plan
2 : an act of giving particular attention : consideration
3a : high or special regard : esteem
b : the quality or state of being esteemed
c respects plural : expressions of high or special regard or deference paid our respects
4 : particular, detail a good plan in some respects
in respect of
chiefly British : with respect to : concerning
in respect to
: with respect to : concerning
with respect to
: with reference to : in relation to


re·​spect | \ ri-ˈspekt How to pronounce respect (audio) \
respected; respecting; respects

Definition of respect (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to consider worthy of high regard : esteem
b : to refrain from interfering with please respect their privacy
2 : to have reference to : concern

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Other Words from respect


respecter noun

Synonyms for respect

Synonyms: Noun

reference, regard

Synonyms: Verb

admire, appreciate, consider, esteem, regard

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Choose the Right Synonym for respect


regard, respect, esteem, admire mean to recognize the worth of a person or thing. regard is a general term that is usually qualified. he is highly regarded in the profession respect implies a considered evaluation or estimation. after many years they came to respect her views esteem implies greater warmth of feeling accompanying a high valuation. no citizen of the town was more highly esteemed admire suggests usually enthusiastic appreciation and often deep affection. a friend that I truly admire

Examples of respect in a Sentence


The earth's crust floats over a core of molten rock and some of its parts have a tendency to move with respect to one another. — Mario Salvadori, Why Buildings Stand Up, 1990 Anyway any honor sent through the mail and cashable is about the only kind I got any great respect for … — Flannery O'Connor, The Habit of Being, 1979 Our ragged hero wasn't a model boy in all respects. I am afraid he swore sometimes, and now and then he played tricks upon unsophisticated boys from the country, or gave a wrong direction to honest old gentlemen unused to the city. — Horatio Alger, Ragged Dick, 1868 The Cat only grinned when it saw Alice. It looked good-natured, she thought: still it had VERY long claws and a great many teeth, so she felt that it ought to be treated with respect. — Lewis Carroll, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, 1865 He has earned their respect. The soldier saluted as a sign of respect. Despite our differences, I have enormous respect for him. I have a great respect for his accomplishments. I expect to be treated with respect. Your theory makes sense in one respect.


Many other critics respect her work, but marginalize her as "the best Polish woman artist" or "the best woman artist of Eastern Europe." — Andrew Solomon, New York Times Book Review, 21 Aug. 1994 He had a weak point—this Fortunato—although in other regards he was a man to be respected and even feared. — Edgar Allan Poe, The Cask of Amontillado, 1846 Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof … The Constitiution of the United States of America The students respect the principal for his honesty. I respect what she has accomplished. You must learn to respect other people's property. We need to respect the environment.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

In that respect, Arnault must be one of Jay's role models, because the man is fanatical about art, possessing everything from Monets to Picassos to Warhols, and with a treasure trove of €86bn, he's certainly got the reserves to do it properly., "Bernard Arnault: 6 Things to Know About World's Second-Richest Man Linked With AC Milan Takeover," 17 Sep. 2019 The Los Angeles Philharmonic is an extraordinary organization in every respect. Deborah Vankin, Los Angeles Times, "L.A. Phil Chief Executive Simon Woods resigns, leaving supporters ‘stunned’," 16 Sep. 2019 Last season the team let a bad play lead to a series of them so growth is evident in that respect. Michelle Gardner, azcentral, "ASU football: What we learned from Sun Devils' upset at Michigan State," 15 Sep. 2019 In one respect — updating rules for cross-border e-commerce, which was still in its infancy when NAFTA took effect 25 years ago — Trump’s deal is a real improvement over the status quo. The Washington Post, Twin Cities, "Other voices: Democrats should give Trump a win on this trade deal," 15 Sep. 2019 Why then would index funds or ETFs be any different than any other fund type or security in that respect? People love attaching a narrative to ups and downs of the markets. Ben Carlson, Fortune, "Yes, Passive Investing Has Exploded. But Here’s Why Fears of a Bubble are Overblown," 14 Sep. 2019 In this respect, there is no analogue — at least not yet — for Anwar Sadat’s decision to remove Egypt from the Soviet camp and align unequivocally with the United States. Vance Serchuk, National Review, "Russia’s Middle East Power Play," 12 Sep. 2019 In that respect, a P3 is very similar to any other delivery method but more expensive. Phillip A. Washington, The Denver Post, "Guest Commentary: Looking past the airport to Denver’s more successful public-private partnerships for the future," 9 Sep. 2019 As Raich points out, many Asian countries where yoga is practiced share the tradition of removing shoes when entering a home, school or temple as a sign of respect. The Washington Post, The Know, "The 12 dos and don’ts of yoga class," 7 Sep. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Having a professional certification is highly respected in the HSE field. Rebecca Maitland, Houston Chronicle, "HSE teams secure range of safety areas," 16 Sep. 2019 All our players need to be respected, imagine trying to abuse your own player through social media., "Pep Guardiola Issues Warning to 'Champions' Liverpool Despite Man City's Loss at Norwich," 15 Sep. 2019 Brazil shows the catastrophe that happens when nature and indigenous peoples are not respected. Benki Pyãnko, Time, "'It Is Our Very Governments Who Are Killing the Earth.' A Brazilian Indigenous Leader Speaks Out On Deforestation in the Amazon," 13 Sep. 2019 Hudson played through kidney stones at the end of the 2017 season and is respected by teammates and coaches for his durability and study habits. Matt Kawahara,, "Raiders sign center Rodney Hudson to three-year extension," 30 Aug. 2019 Considered a master technician and artist, Tom always kept up with the latest new procedures and technologies and was deeply respected in the dental industry., "Deaths in South Florida: 8/11," 11 Aug. 2019 The competition keeps getting better, and while everybody respects him, nobody’s going to cut him any slack. Mike Finger,, "Popovich’s summer task might look familiar to Spurs," 5 Sep. 2019 Moreover, a workplace that mirrors the overall population—where people with diverse talents and abilities are the rule and not the exception—is one where everyone feels welcomed, valued, and respected. Nancy Geenen, Fortune, "Corporate Diversity Efforts Often Leave Out an Important Group: People With Disabilities," 23 Aug. 2019 The Air Force veteran was more than just a fan favorite on Hannah Brown's season of The Bachelorette—his fellow contestants respected him so much that he was called the leader of the group. Anna Moeslein, Glamour, "Mike Johnson Says We’ll Find Out His Relationship Status Sooner Than You Think," 19 Aug. 2019

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1560, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for respect

Noun and Verb

Middle English, from Latin respectus, literally, act of looking back, from respicere to look back, regard, from re- + specere to look — more at spy

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More Definitions for respect



English Language Learners Definition of respect

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a feeling of admiring someone or something that is good, valuable, important, etc.
: a feeling or understanding that someone or something is important, serious, etc., and should be treated in an appropriate way
: a particular way of thinking about or looking at something



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

: to feel admiration for (someone or something) : to regard (someone or something) as being worthy of admiration because of good qualities
: to act in a way which shows that you are aware of (someone's rights, wishes, etc.)
: to treat or deal with (something that is good or valuable) in a proper way


re·​spect | \ ri-ˈspekt How to pronounce respect (audio) \

Kids Definition of respect

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : high or special regard : esteem
2 : thoughtfulness or consideration “Of course, we would wait the appropriate amount of time out of respect for my brother.”— Pam Muñoz Ryan, Esperanza Rising
3 respects plural : an expression of regard or courtesy pay my respects
4 : detail entry 1 sense 2 Our trip was perfect in all respects.
5 : relation to or concern with something specified I'm writing with respect to your ad.


respected; respecting

Kids Definition of respect (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to consider worthy of high regard : esteem
2 : to pay attention to We respected their wishes.

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More from Merriam-Webster on respect

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with respect

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for respect

Spanish Central: Translation of respect

Nglish: Translation of respect for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of respect for Arabic Speakers

Comments on respect

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