responsibility

noun
re·​spon·​si·​bil·​i·​ty | \ ri-ˌspän(t)-sə-ˈbi-lə-tē How to pronounce responsibility (audio) \
plural responsibilities

Definition of responsibility

1 : the quality or state of being responsible: such as
a : moral, legal, or mental accountability
2 : something for which one is responsible : burden has neglected his responsibilities

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Synonyms for responsibility

Synonyms

blame, fault, liability

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Examples of responsibility in a Sentence

… Landau's piece, examining the fan's, and the journalist's responsibility to rock stars … — Lawrence Dietz, Los Angeles Times Book Review, 23 May 1971 A great soprano has a responsibility to her public … — Robert Evett, Atlantic, September 1970 The responsibility for engineering the line of cars which in 1908 evolved the immortal Model T … — John Kenneth Galbraith, New York Times Book Review, 28 Feb. 1954 Anthony Burton had once said that this was your responsibility toward society. — John P. Marquand, Atlantic, Nov. 1947 The boys denied any responsibility for the damage to the fence. A terrorist group has claimed responsibility for the bombing. The janitor has many responsibilities. Mowing the lawn is your responsibility. She has to deal with a lot of family and work responsibilities. It is your responsibility to give the company two weeks notice if you decide to leave. In her new position, she will have much more responsibility. We have a responsibility to protect the environment. The government's responsibility is to serve the public. The principal has responsibility for 450 students and a staff of 35.
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Recent Examples on the Web

The president went so far as to send out an email to the university’s student body requesting applications from any group of 4 or more students willing to accept the responsibility. Matt Schubert, The Denver Post, "Wanted: CSU Cubs fans worthy of outgoing President Tony Frank’s “W” flag," 4 June 2019 By middle age, her Hockney has forgotten how love works, refusing to feel guilt and refusing to take responsibility. The Economist, "A fictionalised biography of David Hockney," 4 June 2019 Last year in Denver, Colorado, voters approved a sales tax increase under the Caring 4 Denver initiative to raise funding to treat mental health and addiction, and to shift responsibility from police and jails to treatment centers and therapy. Tracey Ross, Essence, "Taraji P. Henson Speaks To Black Female Mayors About Increasing Access To Mental Health Resources," 4 June 2019 The building stopped functioning as a hospital in 1895, after the federal government assumed responsibility for processing immigrants. Inga Saffron, https://www.inquirer.com, "This building on the Delaware River saved immigrant lives for 95 years. Now it’s been rescued by Tinicum Twp. | Inga Saffron," 4 June 2019 For reasons unclear to Antonio, Ruzek helped cover it up and took responsibility for the murder. Kelly O'sullivan, Country Living, "‘Chicago P.D.’ and ‘Chicago Med’ Fans Are Outraged After the Confusing Finale Cast Exits," 23 May 2019 Imagine going from a reporter, a bureau chief with four people to managing a thousand people, that’s a huge responsibility. Eric Johnson, Recode, "Memo from a ‘Facebook nation’ to Mark Zuckerberg: You moved fast and broke our country.," 26 Nov. 2018 That’s a responsibility from which Facebook and other internet companies have shied, professing to be mere tools for their users to communicate with one another. Casey Newton, The Verge, "One way Twitter’s ad archive improves on Facebook’s," 3 Nov. 2018 Multiemployer pension plans stand out as the most poorly funded plans in a universe of public and private pensions that set a very low bar for fiscal responsibility.... WSJ, "Multiemployer Pension Plans’ Face Bad Incentives," 13 May 2019

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

1771, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for responsibility

see responsible

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Statistics for responsibility

Last Updated

7 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for responsibility

The first known use of responsibility was in 1771

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More Definitions for responsibility

responsibility

noun

English Language Learners Definition of responsibility

: the state of being the person who caused something to happen
: a duty or task that you are required or expected to do
: something that you should do because it is morally right, legally required, etc.

responsibility

noun
re·​spon·​si·​bil·​i·​ty | \ ri-ˌspän-sə-ˈbi-lə-tē How to pronounce responsibility (audio) \
plural responsibilities

Kids Definition of responsibility

1 : the quality or state of being in charge of someone or something
2 : the quality of being dependable Show responsibility by always doing your homework.
3 : something or someone for which someone has charge The children are my responsibility.

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Comments on responsibility

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