sample

noun
sam·​ple | \ ˈsam-pəl How to pronounce sample (audio) \

Definition of sample

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : a representative part or a single item from a larger whole or group especially when presented for inspection or shown as evidence of quality : specimen
2 : a finite part of a statistical population whose properties are studied to gain information about the whole
3 : an excerpt from a recording (such as a popular song by another performer) that is used in a musical composition, recording, or performance … had to substantially rewrite "Sometimes I Miss You … " when he was denied permission to use a Michael Jackson sample— Jon Young

sample

verb
sampled; sampling\ ˈsam-​p(ə-​)liŋ How to pronounce sampling (audio) \

Definition of sample (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to take a sample of or from especially : to judge the quality of by a sample : test sampled his output for defects sample a wine
2 : to use a segment of (recorded music, sounds, or dialogue from another source) as part of one's own musical composition or recording A Josh Wink record takes a series of sampled noises, then twists and warps them through a barrage of sound processors …— Frank Broughton : to use a sample (see sample entry 1 sense 3) from (another recording or performer) … claims Carey sampled his hit "I Want to Thank You" on her 1992 song "Make It Happen."— Jancee Dunn

sample

adjective

Definition of sample (Entry 3 of 3)

: serving as an illustration or example sample questions

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Synonyms for sample

Synonyms: Noun

cross section, sampler, sampling, selection, slice

Synonyms: Verb

test, try (out)

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Choose the Right Synonym for sample

Noun

instance, case, illustration, example, sample, specimen mean something that exhibits distinguishing characteristics in its category. instance applies to any individual person, act, or thing that may be offered to illustrate or explain. an instance of history repeating itself case is used to direct attention to a real or assumed occurrence or situation that is to be considered, studied, or dealt with. a case of mistaken identity illustration applies to an instance offered as a means of clarifying or illuminating a general statement. a telling illustration of Murphy's Law example applies to a typical, representative, or illustrative instance or case. a typical example of bureaucratic waste sample implies a part or unit taken at random from a larger whole and so presumed to be typical of its qualities. show us a sample of your work specimen applies to any example or sample whether representative or merely existent and available. one of the finest specimens of the jeweler's art

Examples of sample in a Sentence

Noun

We would like to see a sample of your work. I tasted a sample of the new cereal. Free samples were handed out at the store. The sample included 96 women over the age of 40. A random sample of people filled out the survey. We looked at a representative sample of public schools.

Verb

She sampled everything the resort had to offer, from golfing to yoga. A low percentage of the women sampled said that they smoked during pregnancy. Five of the 20 schools sampled did not meet the standards.

Adjective

The teacher handed out a sample essay. Here are some sample questions for the test.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Granted, all of this is happening in a sample size of barely two weeks. Jon Tayler, SI.com, "Bo Bichette's Historic Start to His Career Makes Blue Jays' Future Even More Exciting," 9 Aug. 2019 The kicker competition can go on longer and allow for a larger sample size. oregonlive.com, "Oregon Ducks fall camp breakdown: Specialists," 30 July 2019 According to recent studies — with extremely small sample sizes, considering how few people receive retransplants each year — the one-year survival rate of a pulmonary retransplant is around 71.5 percent. Caitlin Dwyer, Longreads, "Shared Breath," 25 July 2019 Davis only had 153 plate appearances -- fewer then Hiura already has -- but this was also an impressive showing, given the sample size. Jr Radcliffe, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "As Keston Hiura keeps mashing, should we already be talking about the greatest offensive rookie seasons in Brewers history?," 22 July 2019 But in a small sample size of defensive snaps, Averett impressed. Jonas Shaffer, baltimoresun.com, "Ravens 2019 training camp preview: Cornerback," 22 July 2019 The study had some limitations, including smaller sample sizes in some jobs and the different distribution of industries by state. Minali Nigam, CNN, "Almost 20% of nonsmoking workers are exposed to secondhand smoke on the job, study finds," 11 July 2019 Though their sample size is small, O’Connor and her colleagues suspect that Microraptor kept its meals in its stomach for longer than Anchiornis and modern birds, ultimately passing bone in their feces like other dinosaurs such as Tyrannosaurus rex. Michael Greshko, National Geographic, "Rare fossil in a fossil reveals a dinosaur's surprising last meal," 11 July 2019 But there were some obvious limitations here, including the small sample size and lack of placebo control. A.a. Newton, SELF, "Caffeine Doesn’t Really 'Wake Up' Your Skin—But It Might Do Something Else," 11 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Arsenal have performed in well in pre-season, but have sampled defeats to both Lyon and Real Madrid. SI.com, "Angers vs Arsenal Preview: Where to Watch, Live Stream, Kick Off Time & Team News," 30 July 2019 But in the rap world, this deep groove from the band's 1970 LP Struttin' reigns supreme, having been sampled over 90 times by artists such as A Tribe Called Quest, J Dilla, Gang Starr, Black Eyed Peas, Redman, Eric B. and Rakim and Danny Brown. Ron Hart, Billboard, "Art Neville: Celebrate the Late Legend With 11 Essential Tracks," 23 July 2019 His music–with the Neville Brothers, the Meters, the Hawketts–has been sampled and copied by many. Irma Thomas, Time, "Irma Thomas Remembers Father of Funk Art Neville," 22 July 2019 Operating from the research vessel G. O. Sars, Norwegian and Russian researchers took radiation samples from a duct that had previously been sampled by Russian investigators in the 1990s and 2000s. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "30 Years Later, a Sunken Soviet Sub Is Still Leaking Radioactivity," 12 July 2019 But only 20 percent of Americans have sampled cuisines such as Korean, Ethiopian, and Brazilian. Ewen Bell, National Geographic, "Discover why Laos is the world’s next great foodie destination," 10 July 2019 One of the largest projects has sampled skeletal remains from collections in Tanzania, Zambia and Kenya. Bridget Alex, Discover Magazine, "State of Science: Ancient DNA Starts Answering Archaeology's Big Questions," 1 Jan. 2019 The scientists examined thousands of strains of the flu that have been sampled since 1993. Quanta Magazine, "The New Science of Evolutionary Forecasting," 17 July 2014 Parrish is looking forward to seeing the scientific capabilities that can come of the project, like being able to chemically sample atmospheres of other planets around other stars. Leah Brennan, baltimoresun.com/maryland/carroll, "‘I just considered it a privilege’: Sykesville man works toward launch of NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope," 25 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Operators can use data collected up to five years prior to drilling rather than sample water wells to establish baseline water quality. Judith Kohler, The Denver Post, "Colorado toughened up its oil and gas rules. But how tough are they?," 11 Aug. 2019 Participants sample five wines from prestigious appellations while nibbling small bites. Condé Nast Traveler, "20 Best Food Tours in Paris," 3 Mar. 2018 Guests sample 5 rare sour & funky beers from Rhinegeist cellars, including newest sour ale of dark descent. Rasputin Todd, Cincinnati.com, "Things to do in Cincinnati this week: June 18-24," 18 June 2018 Though not sample size, Dixon is neither a waif or a plus-size bombshell. Janelle Okwodu, Vogue, "Miu Miu’s Newest Beauty Is a Rule-Breaking Nerd From Florida," 7 Mar. 2018 Guests sample Greek food at a previous ethnic food event put on by the Aurora Historical Society. Joy Davis, Aurora Beacon-News, "Aurora event to celebrate city's ethnic food traditions," 19 Apr. 2018 While in Zoar, take a tour of town, sample German-style meatloaf at the Canal Tavern or go antiquing at the Cobbler Shop Bed & Breakfast. Lauren Johnson And Jesse Sparks, Smithsonian, "The 20 Best Small Towns to Visit in 2017," 2 May 2017 Sample headlines: What equality really means: An Asian-American take on affirmative action to ‘ Megan Schellong, USA TODAY College, "Check out these 5 student digital media orgs with campus editions," 24 Aug. 2017 Sample beers from around Ohio, live music, and food trucks. Rasputin Todd, Cincinnati.com, "Things to do this week: Aug. 15-20," 15 Aug. 2017

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

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1767, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1820, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for sample

Noun

Middle English, from Anglo-French sample, essample, from Latin exemplum — more at example

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Dictionary Entries near sample

sampaloc

sampan

samphire

sample

sampleite

sampleman

sample post

Statistics for sample

Last Updated

16 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for sample

The first known use of sample was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for sample

sample

noun

English Language Learners Definition of sample

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: a small amount of something that gives you information about the thing it was taken from
: a small amount of something that is given to people to try
: a group of people or things that are taken from a larger group and studied, tested, or questioned to get information

sample

verb

English Language Learners Definition of sample (Entry 2 of 3)

: to taste a small amount of (something)
: to try or experience (something)
technical : to test, study, or question (a group of people or things taken from a larger group) to get information

sample

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of sample (Entry 3 of 3)

: used as an example of something

sample

noun
sam·​ple | \ ˈsam-pəl How to pronounce sample (audio) \

Kids Definition of sample

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a part or piece that shows the quality or character of the whole A water sample was taken to test for purity.
2 : a small amount of something that is given to people to try

sample

verb
sampled; sampling

Kids Definition of sample (Entry 2 of 2)

: to judge the quality or character of by trying or examining a small part or amount We sampled the store's cheese.

sample

noun
sam·​ple | \ ˈsam-pəl How to pronounce sample (audio) \

Medical Definition of sample

1 : a representative part or a single item from a larger whole or group especially when presented for inspection or shown as evidence of quality : specimen a blood sample
2 : a finite part of a statistical population whose properties are studied to gain information about the whole

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More from Merriam-Webster on sample

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with sample

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for sample

Spanish Central: Translation of sample

Nglish: Translation of sample for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of sample for Arabic Speakers

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