sig·na·ture | \ ˈsig-nə-ˌchu̇r , -chər , -ˌtyu̇r , -ˌtu̇r \

Definition of signature 

1a : the act of signing one's name to something

b : the name of a person written with his or her own hand

2 : a feature in the appearance or qualities of a natural object formerly held to indicate its utility in medicine

3a : a letter or figure placed usually at the bottom of the first page on each sheet of printed pages (as of a book) as a direction to the binder in arranging and gathering the sheets

b : one unit of a book comprising a group of printed sheets that are folded and stitched together

5 : the part of a medical prescription that contains the directions to the patient

6 : something (such as a tune, style, or logo) that serves to set apart or identify also : a characteristic mark

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Synonyms for signature


autograph, hand, John Hancock

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Examples of signature in a Sentence

There is a place for your signature at the bottom of the form. If we can collect 200,000 signatures on our petition, then our candidate will be included on the ballot. We presented the document to the president for her signature. The bill passed and went to the governor for signature a week ago.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Your creativity becomes your signature, no matter what comes down the path., "Horoscope," 13 July 2018 Jenner's pumped-up, often-overdrawn lips have been an integral part of her signature look (and the selling point of many a Kylie Lip Kit) ever since. Samantha Sasso,, "Yes, You Can Remove Your Lip Fillers — Here's How," 9 July 2018 For over 20 years, Gringo’s has served the community with their signature Tex Mex menu items suc as the Southwest Eggrolls and the Cozumel Chicken Salad. Kaila Contreras, Houston Chronicle, "Krispy Creme to make Lake Houston area debut on FM 1960 near Humble," 29 June 2018 Why would Brown, a seeming devotee of aggressive public health measures, put his signature on such a bill—and why would the overwhelmingly like-minded California state legislature approve it in the first place? Sy Mukherjee, Fortune, "The Crazy Story Behind Why California Just Banned Soda Taxes," 29 June 2018 Also, the Miss Montreal restaurant with its signature crispy Southern fried chicken was no more. Si Liberman, San Antonio Express-News, "A sentimental journey to Montreal and Quebec City," 28 June 2018 Justice allowed the sports betting bill to become state law without his signature. John Raby, The Seattle Times, "In West Virginia, FanDuel makes first sports wagering deal," 26 June 2018 The Carolina Panthers and the Charlotte Knights will get big tax breaks after North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper let a bill become law without his signature Tuesday. Jim Morrill, charlotteobserver, "Carolina Panthers, Charlotte Knights just scored a big break on their property taxes," 26 June 2018 The commitments last year jumped-started a 24-man 2018 Aztecs recruiting class that would include 11 local players — nine of them putting their signatures to letters of intent during December’s early signing period. Kirk Kenney,, "Aztecs get commitment from Helix LB Michael Shawcroft," 26 June 2018

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

1547, in the meaning defined at sense 3b

History and Etymology for signature

Middle French or Medieval Latin; Middle French, from Medieval Latin signatura, from Latin signatus, past participle of signare to sign, seal

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Statistics for signature

Last Updated

20 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for signature

The first known use of signature was in 1547

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More Definitions for signature



English Language Learners Definition of signature

: a person's name written in that person's handwriting

: the act of signing something

: something (such as a quality or feature) that is closely associated with someone or something


sig·na·ture | \ ˈsig-nə-ˌchu̇r , -chər \

Kids Definition of signature

1 : the name of a person written by that person Your signature is required on the form.

2 : a sign or group of signs placed at the beginning of a staff in music to show the key ( key signature ) or the meter ( time signature )


sig·na·ture | \ ˈsig-nə-ˌchu̇(ə)r, -chər, -ˌt(y)u̇(ə)r \

Medical Definition of signature 

1 : a feature in the appearance or qualities of a natural object formerly held to indicate its utility in medicine either because of a fancied resemblance to a body part (as a heart-shaped leaf indicating utility in heart disease) or because of a presumed relation to some phase of a disease (as the prickly nature of thistle indicating utility in case of a stitch in the side)

2 : the part of a medical prescription which contains the directions to the patient

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Legal Definition of signature 

1a : the act of signing one's name or of making a mark in lieu thereof

b : the name of a person written with his or her own hand to signify that the writing which precedes accords with his or her wishes or intentions

c : a mark (as initials, stamp, or printed name) made on a document and intended to serve as an indication of the party's execution or authentication of the document and intent to be bound by it — see also private signature

2 : a distinguishing or identifying mark, feature, or quality especially : a distinctive method of committing a crime that is characteristic of an offender

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Comments on signature

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


to deposit or conceal in a hiding place

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