spec·​ta·​tor | \ ˈspek-ˌtā-tər How to pronounce spectator (audio) , spek-ˈtā- \

Definition of spectator

1 : one who looks on or watches
2 : a shoe having contrasting colors with a perforated design at the toe and sometimes heel

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Other Words from spectator

spectator adjective
spectatorial \ ˌspek-​tə-​ˈtȯr-​ē-​əl How to pronounce spectator (audio) \ adjective
spectatorship \ ˈspek-​ˌtā-​tər-​ˌship How to pronounce spectator (audio) , spek-​ˈtā-​ \ noun

Examples of spectator in a Sentence

The spectators lining the road cheered the racers on. The accident attracted a large crowd of spectators. I wasn't a participant in the preparations, merely a spectator.
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Recent Examples on the Web In that same post, event organizers said large crowds were expected in multiple high-profile spectator areas. Julia Wick, Los Angeles Times, "Column: Desert off-road festival to go ahead despite violating state guidelines," 17 Jan. 2021 Also in the stands today as a spectator: former coach Mark Dantonio. Contact Chris Solari: csolari@freepress.com. Chris Solari, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan State football short on offensive tackles; QB Rocky Lombardi likely to start," 24 Oct. 2020 But at the taping, one spectator, a white man, laughed particularly loud and long. Lisa Respers France, CNN, "Blackface in Hollywood has never been funny. People are just admitting it now," 24 June 2020 While spectator attendance in gyms is limited by COVID-19 guidelines, many games are livestreamed to bigger online audiences. Jim Paulsen, Star Tribune, "Uneven mask-wearing in Minnesota high school games draws call for 100-percent compliance," 21 Jan. 2021 Johnson said that as of Thursday evening, just under 1,500 spectator tickets had already been pre-sold, and 482 drivers were registered. Julia Wick, Los Angeles Times, "Column: Desert off-road festival to go ahead despite violating state guidelines," 17 Jan. 2021 Mansfield also practices and competes in-person at Wheaton College, which features an eight-lane pool and a large pool deck and spectator area to fit two full teams. Andrew Lin, BostonGlobe.com, "At King Philip, swim program sets example in competing and giving," 15 Jan. 2021 The center had no chance of playing against Ohio State -- or in any competitive football game for several months -- but wanted to close his college career as more than a spectator. Mike Rodak | Mrodak@al.com, al, "Landon Dickerson takes final snaps, hoists Nick Saban after title win," 12 Jan. 2021 Surgery to repair the injury left Goff a spectator last Sunday while Wolford directed an 18-7 win over Arizona to clinch the Rams’ postseason berth. Tim Bielik, cleveland, "Los Angeles Rams vs. Seattle Seahawks NFC Wild Card free live stream (1/9/21): How to watch, TV options, live updates," 9 Jan. 2021

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

circa 1586, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for spectator

Latin, from spectare to watch

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Time Traveler for spectator

Time Traveler

The first known use of spectator was circa 1586

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Statistics for spectator

Last Updated

13 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Spectator.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/spectator. Accessed 25 Feb. 2021.

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More Definitions for spectator



English Language Learners Definition of spectator

: a person who watches an event, show, game, activity, etc., often as part of an audience


spec·​ta·​tor | \ ˈspek-ˌtā-tər How to pronounce spectator (audio) \

Kids Definition of spectator

: a person who looks on (as at a sports event)

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