signify

verb
sig·​ni·​fy | \ ˈsig-nə-ˌfī How to pronounce signify (audio) \
signified; signifying

Definition of signify

transitive verb

1a : to be a sign of : mean
b : imply
2 : to show especially by a conventional token (such as word, signal, or gesture)

intransitive verb

1 : to have significance : matter it will not much signify what one wears— Jane Austen
2 : to engage in signifying

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Synonyms for signify

Synonyms

count, import, matter, mean, weigh

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Did You Know?

Signify basically means "to make a sign or signal". One of its synonyms is indicate; the index finger is the finger you point with, so to indicate is essentially to point to something. Significant means "important" and significance means "importance;" similarly, insignificant means "unimportant" and insignificance means "lack of importance".

Examples of signify in a Sentence

A check mark next to your name signifies that you have met all the requirements. The recent decline of the stock market does not necessarily signify the start of a recession. He gave her a diamond ring to signify his love. Whether he agrees or not does not signify.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Allred posed with a T-shirt with the phrase $7.25, signifying the minimum wage that Texans cheerleaders were paid. David Barron, Houston Chronicle, "Former Texans cheerleaders claim sex discrimination in new lawsuit," 1 June 2018 Mild redness is normal, but any swelling or beefy red skin may signify infection or a poor reaction. Lucy Diavolo, Teen Vogue, "A Tattoo Artist's Guide to Your First Tattoo," 2 Jan. 2019 Some reasons behind chronic headaches are not serious, while other causes can signify a deeper health issue is at play. Amy Marturana, SELF, "What Your Headaches Can Tell You About Your Health," 29 Dec. 2018 But every player had a role, and this season signified that the Sixers are once again contenders. Sarah Todd, Philly.com, "What's the future of the Sixers roster? A player-by-player breakdown," 15 May 2018 But the fact the Weather Service is discussing the possibility signifies folks should pay very close attention to the weather this evening. Jeff Halverson, Washington Post, "‘Widespread damaging winds’, possible derecho, could affect the Washington region this evening," 14 May 2018 The floor descends as visitors move deeper into the memorial, so that the monuments rise in height, signifying that the victims were typically hanged. Mike Cason, AL.com, "Memorial, museum, recount terror of lynching, slavery's legacies," 23 Apr. 2018 The Block 5 may signify a turning point in SpaceX’s business model. Loren Grush, The Verge, "The Verge 2018 tech report card: SpaceX," 29 Dec. 2018 As the bookend to his year-long collaboration with MAC, Slay Ride also signifies the completion of an experience that Starrr treasured as both the definitive face of men in makeup and a former MAC sales associate. Sandra Song, Teen Vogue, "Patrick Starrr on His Holiday MAC Collaboration, Makeup Shaming, and Inclusivity in the Beauty World," 23 Dec. 2018

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

13th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for signify

Middle English signifien, from Anglo-French signifier, from Latin significare to indicate, signify, from signum sign

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Statistics for signify

Last Updated

26 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for signify

The first known use of signify was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for signify

signify

verb

English Language Learners Definition of signify

: to be a sign of (something) : to mean (something)
: to show (your feelings, intentions, opinions, etc.) by doing something
formal + somewhat old-fashioned : to have importance

signify

verb
sig·​ni·​fy | \ ˈsig-nə-ˌfī How to pronounce signify (audio) \
signified; signifying

Kids Definition of signify

1 : mean entry 1 sense 1, denote A check mark signifies a correct answer.
2 : to show especially by a sign : make known She nodded to signify agreement.
3 : to have importance : matter “It doesn't signify what you THINK … Facts is facts.”— Lucy Maud Montgomery, Anne of Avonlea

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More from Merriam-Webster on signify

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with signify

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for signify

Spanish Central: Translation of signify

Nglish: Translation of signify for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of signify for Arabic Speakers

Comments on signify

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