state

1 of 2

noun

often attributive
1
a
: mode or condition of being
a state of readiness
b(1)
: condition of mind or temperament
in a highly nervous state
(2)
: a condition of abnormal tension or excitement
2
a
: a condition or stage in the physical being of something
insects in the larval state
the gaseous state of water
b
: any of various conditions characterized by definite quantities (as of energy, angular momentum, or magnetic moment) in which an atomic system may exist
3
a
: social position
especially : high rank
b(1)
: elaborate or luxurious style of living
(2)
: formal dignity : pomp
usually used with in
4
a
: a body of persons constituting a special class in a society : estate sense 3
b
states plural : the members or representatives of the governing classes assembled in a legislative body
c
obsolete : a person of high rank (as a noble)
5
a
: a politically organized body of people usually occupying a definite territory
especially : one that is sovereign
b
: the political organization of such a body of people
c
: a government or politically organized society having a particular character
a police state
the welfare state
6
: the operations or concerns of the government of a country
7
a
: one of the constituent units of a nation having a federal government
the fifty states
b
States plural : The United States of America
8
: the territory of a state

state

2 of 2

verb

stated; stating

transitive verb

1
: to set by regulation or authority
2
: to express the particulars of especially in words : report
broadly : to express in words
statable adjective
or stateable

Examples of state in a Sentence

Noun Happiness is the state or condition of being happy. We must keep our armed forces in a constant state of readiness. She meditates to achieve a higher state of being. The building is in such a sorry state that it's hardly worth fixing. water in a gaseous state the solid and liquid states the member states of the United Nations Security Council Verb The lawyer will state the facts of the case. He stated his name in full. I was merely stating an opinion. “This is a difficult situation,” he stated simply. Please state the purpose of your visit. I'd like to state for the record that I disagree with the board's decision. For the reasons stated above, I hereby withdraw from the competition. The rules clearly state that you can only draw one card.
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
While some states, cities, and counties have already modernized their systems or have made plans to upgrade, many others are lagging. Stephanie Armour, USA TODAY, 16 July 2024 Gray wolves are currently listed under the ESA as endangered in 44 states, threatened in Minnesota, and under state jurisdiction in Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, portions of eastern Oregon and Washington, and north-central Utah. Christine Clarridge, Axios, 16 July 2024
Verb
The post also states that Amazon founder Jeff Bezos owns The Washington Post and business magnate Rupert Murdoch owns The Wall Street Journal. Nate Trela, USA TODAY, 17 July 2024 The lawsuit further states that Huang took advantage of his control over Pasaca and Innova to divvy up ownership shares to his benefit, transfer $200 million to bank accounts in Hong Kong and Singapore and make more than $200 million in bad investments. Laurence Darmiento, Los Angeles Times, 17 July 2024 See all Example Sentences for state 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'state.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Noun

Middle English stat, from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French estat, from Latin status, from stare to stand — more at stand

First Known Use

Noun

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

Verb

1647, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of state was in the 13th century

Dictionary Entries Near state

Cite this Entry

“State.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/state. Accessed 21 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition

state

1 of 3 noun
1
a
: manner or condition of being
a state of readiness
b
: condition of mind or disposition
in a highly nervous state
2
a
: a condition or stage of the physical makeup of something
water in the gaseous state
b
: a stage in the growth or development of a plant or animal
the larval state
3
a
: a politically organized body of people usually occupying a definite territory
b
: the political organization of such a body of people
4
: one of the units of a nation having a federal government
the United States of America
5
: the territory of a state
stateless
-ləs
adjective

state

2 of 3 adjective
1
: suitable or used for ceremonies or official occasions
state robes
2
: of or relating to a national state or to one state of a federal government
a state church
a state legislature
3
: of or relating to the government : governmental
state secrets

state

3 of 3 verb
stated; stating
1
: to set by regulation or authority
the law stated times for inspection
2
: to express in words
state an opinion

Medical Definition

state

noun
: mode or condition of being: as
a
: condition of mind or temperament
a manic state
b
: a condition or stage in the physical being of something
the gaseous state of water

Legal Definition

state

noun
often attributive
1
a
: a politically organized body of people usually occupying a definite territory
especially : one that is sovereign
b
: the political organization that has supreme civil authority and political power and serves as the basis of government see also compelling state interest at interest sense 3a, separation of church and state
c
: a government or politically organized society having a particular character
a police state
2
: the operations or concerns of the government of a country : the sphere of administration and supreme political power of a country (as in international relations)
secrets of state
affairs of state
3
a
: one of the constituent units of a nation having a federal government
specifically : one of the fifty such units comprising the great part of the U.S. see also state law
b
: the territory of a state

More from Merriam-Webster on state

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