se·​lect | \ sə-ˈlekt How to pronounce select (audio) \

Definition of select

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : chosen from a number or group by fitness or preference
2a : of special value or excellence : superior, choice
b : exclusively or fastidiously chosen often with regard to social, economic, or cultural characteristics
3 : judicious or restrictive in choice : discriminating pleased with the select appreciation of his books— Osbert Sitwell


selected; selecting; selects

Definition of select (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

: to choose (as by fitness or excellence) from a number or group : pick out

intransitive verb

: to make a choice



Definition of select (Entry 3 of 3)

: one that is select often used in plural

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Other Words from select


selectable \ sə-​ˈlek-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce selectable (audio) \ adjective
selectness \ sə-​ˈlek(t)-​nəs How to pronounce selectness (audio) \ noun
selector \ sə-​ˈlek-​tər How to pronounce selector (audio) \ noun

Examples of select in a Sentence


Only a few select employees attended the meeting. A select committee was formed to plan the project. The group was small and select. A select number of people are invited. Only a select few will be accepted into the program. He only drinks select wines.


Please select one item from the list. The school will only select 12 applicants for enrollment. Knowing the importance of making the right choice, he selected carefully. Select “Insert” from the “Edit” menu.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

The space agency has said that over 100 events will be organised in 100 select cities across the country The festivities will conclude a year later in Thiruvananthapuram and a commemorative coin will be issued on the occasion. Niharika Sharma, Quartz India, "The man who established India’s space programme and its premier B-school turns 100," 11 Aug. 2019 But whether or not Zillow Offers is destined to be the future of selling (and buying) homes, homeowners in select cities can expect to see a Zillow sign in their neighborhood soon. Anne Sraders, Fortune, "Zillow ‘Offers’ is Coming Next Year to Arizona, Ohio, Oklahoma, and Florida," 7 Aug. 2019 Joining the Goo Goo Dolls on select dates of the tour will be special guests, The Unlikely Candidates and Beach Slang. Taylor Mims, Billboard, "Goo Goo Dolls Announce Fall Miracle Pill Tour," 23 July 2019 The ride-hailing giant silently rolled out a service in select cities that offers discounts on cab rides, free JUMP bikes and scooter rides, and free Uber Eats delivery, TechCrunch reported on Monday. Dalvin Brown, USA TODAY, "Uber's new test will offer rides, deliver dinner and rent you a scooter for $24.99 a month," 23 July 2019 Delta and Alaska offer the fare on select dates, but only as long as JetBlue flies the route, through Sept. 15. Scott Mcmurren, Anchorage Daily News, "Here are some cheap tickets from Alaska to Seattle, LA, Paris and beyond," 13 July 2019 More than 1 million fans are expected to see the singer's third headlining tour and his first ever to break into stadiums in select cities. Ed Masley, azcentral, "July concerts in Phoenix: Shawn Mendes, Queen & Adam Lambert, DaBaby, Third Eye Blind," 2 July 2019 There is also a meet-up program in development, which is already in place in select cities including New York, Portland, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Kansas City, and Denver. Lauren Valenti, Vogue, "This New Sobriety School Will Change the Way You Think About Drinking," 29 May 2019 In select cities, Floyd will provide free same-day shipping, an unprecedented turnaround time for sofas. Liz Stinson, Curbed, "Flatpack furniture startup Floyd is launching a sofa," 20 Aug. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

At the beginning of each month, the Ennismore team selects which movie to screen next, based on seasonality. Anna Ben Yehuda Rahmanan, Fortune, "This Cinema in Brooklyn Claims to Be the Tiniest Movie Theater in the World," 17 Aug. 2019 To prevent its coaches from using their authority for personal advantage, USA Basketball teams are selected by committees. Tim Sullivan, The Courier-Journal, "Louisville coach Jeff Walz will go to great lengths for another shot with USA Basketball," 16 Aug. 2019 Participants may select the ride group of their choice when registering., "Community News For The Stafford Edition," 16 Aug. 2019 Elite wide receiver Johnny Wilson has been selected as one of the game’s high school ambassadors this year, while future Ducks quarterback Jay Butterfield and defensive end Maceal Afaese will join Laloulu on the roster., "Beavers, Ducks pledges selected as Polynesian Bowl all-stars," 16 Aug. 2019 Only 1 in 300 people are ever selected as the best possible donor. Ada Tseng, Daily Pilot, "Leukemia survivor designs scrubs to give back to medical community, raise awareness for bone marrow registry," 16 Aug. 2019 Mauna Kea was selected for the construction of the massive Thirty Meter Telescope being imposed by the University of California and CalTech along with the countries of Canada, China, Japan, and India. Marianne Garvey, CNN, "Inside Jason Momoa's fight for a sacred Hawaiian mountain," 15 Aug. 2019 Each of the league’s eight head coaches will select one before the draft begins. Joe Nguyen, The Denver Post, "7 quarterbacks, including 3 ex-Broncos, who could end up in the XFL following Landry Jones," 15 Aug. 2019 Ten applicants have been selected for a panel interview this month. La Cañada Valley Sun, "Devil’s Gate hauling plan shifts to ease traffic at key times near LCHS," 14 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Overstock: Save up to 45 percent on select mattresses, up to 30 percent off bathroom items, and up to 20 percent off other furniture and decor. Jenny Xie, Curbed, "All the best sales to shop this weekend," 2 Aug. 2019 Right now, up to 40% off select patio furniture, up to 30% off select power tools, and up to 15% off select grills along with other discounts. Courtney Campbell, USA TODAY, "The 7 best deals you can get this Wednesday," 3 July 2019 Will Washington’s decision-makers select from a position of empowerment or self-preservation? Ben Golliver, The Denver Post, "2019 NBA mock draft: How will Pelicans build around Zion Williamson?," 18 June 2019 If no other moves are taken into consideration, the Heat select . . . Ira Winderman,, "Heat No. 13 NBA Mock 3.0: Setting the scenarios, if it’s not about best player available," 12 June 2019 Get the Sunday Riley Game Changer Kit for $98 (Save $42) Other great beauty, haircare and skincare Prime Day deals Save 30% or more on select Elizabeth Arden products. Sara Hendricks, USA TODAY, "5 of the best beauty deals you can get this Prime Day," 16 July 2019 With Paul Gauguin Cruises, receive a shipboard credit of up to $500 per stateroom on select South Pacific sailings. Washington Post, "Travel deals: Free hotel night in Vietnam and Aer Lingus sale fare to Europe," 28 June 2019 Chyna’s RuPaul interview airs Thursday on select Fox stations, including WNYW Fox-5 in New York and KTTV Fox-11 in LA (check local listings). Karen Mizoguchi,, "Blac Chyna Says She and Rob Kardashian Have 'No Animosity' Over Co-Parenting 2½-Year-Old Dream," 26 June 2019 Michelle Visage and Ross Mathews — longtime Drag Race panelists and friends of RuPaul — will also rotate appearances throughout RuPaul‘s three-week testing phase, which kicks off June 10 on select Fox stations around the country. Joey Nolfi,, "RuPaul's new talk show announces Paula Abdul, James Corden, more guests," 5 June 2019

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


circa 1555, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1566, in the meaning defined at transitive sense


1610, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for select


Latin selectus, past participle of seligere to select, from se- apart (from sed, se without) + legere to gather, select — more at suicide, legend

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Learn More about select

Statistics for select

Last Updated

19 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for select

The first known use of select was circa 1555

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More Definitions for select



English Language Learners Definition of select

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: chosen from a group to include the best people or things
: of the highest quality



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

: to choose (someone or something) from a group
computers : to choose (a particular action, section of text, etc.) especially by using a mouse


se·​lect | \ sə-ˈlekt How to pronounce select (audio) \
selected; selecting

Kids Definition of select

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to pick out from a group I selected a ripe peach.



Kids Definition of select (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : chosen to include the best or most suitable individuals select committees Select students participated in the program.
2 : of special value or excellence a select hotel
se·​lect | \ sə-ˈlekt How to pronounce select (audio) \

Medical Definition of select

: to cause a specified gene, trait, or organism to become more frequent or less frequent usually used with for or against animal breeders need to select simultaneously for improved conformity to breed characteristics and against defective genes causing disease

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More from Merriam-Webster on select

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with select

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for select

Spanish Central: Translation of select

Nglish: Translation of select for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of select for Arabic Speakers

Comments on select

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


not constant or steady

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