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

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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 Senate also approved a bill that will shift responsibility for conducting background checks on certain gun sales from the state police to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Christian Wade, Washington Examiner, "New Hampshire lawmakers seek to blunt presidential orders on firearms," 6 Apr. 2021 Darin Detwiler is an assistant dean and associate teaching professor at the Northeastern University College of Professional Studies where he is focuses on corporate social responsibility and ethics. Edward Segal, Forbes, "What Companies Can Do When They Wind Up On The Wrong Side Of Issues," 6 Apr. 2021 The bill’s sponsor has presented the measure as an effort to decrease the burden of pregnancy on women and increase responsibility for men who have children. NBC News, "Utah fathers now legally required to pay half of pregnancy costs," 6 Apr. 2021 The Constitution requires elections for members of the U.S. House, and gives governors the responsibility for calling elections to fill vacancies. Anthony Man, sun-sentinel.com, "Special election will fill Alcee Hastings seat; timing is up to DeSantis," 6 Apr. 2021 Ultimately, Morgan said, the responsibility falls on companies’ top executives to defend their people. Christie D’zurilla Staff Writer, Los Angeles Times, "Piers Morgan says Oprah Winfrey didn’t challenge Harry and Meghan’s harsh allegations," 6 Apr. 2021 Thom Sueta, a spokesperson for Chemours, said the company has plans to reduce emissions of both chemicals as part of its corporate responsibility program. Phil Mckenna And James Bruggers, The Courier-Journal, "Louisville super-polluting chemical plant emits not 1, but 2 potent greenhouse gases," 5 Apr. 2021 The bill's sponsor has presented the measure as an effort to decrease the burden of pregnancy on women and increase responsibility for men who have children. Sophia Eppolito, USA TODAY, "Utah dads will be required to pay half of pregnancy costs under new law," 5 Apr. 2021 The bill’s sponsor has presented the measure as an effort to decrease the burden of pregnancy on women and increase responsibility for men who have children. chicagotribune.com, "Utah dads to be required to pay half of pregnancy costs," 5 Apr. 2021

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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Time Traveler for responsibility

Time Traveler

The first known use of responsibility was in 1771

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Statistics for responsibility

Last Updated

8 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Responsibility.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/responsibility. Accessed 15 Apr. 2021.

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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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