sup·​posed | \ sə-ˈpōzd How to pronounce supposed (audio) ; senses 1b and 2a usually sə-ˈpō-zəd How to pronounce supposed (audio) , senses 3 and 4 often sə-ˈpōst How to pronounce supposed (audio) \

Definition of supposed

1a : pretended twelve hours are supposed to elapse between Acts I and II— W. S. Gilbert
b : alleged trusted my supposed friends
2a : held as an opinion : believed also : mistakenly believed : imagined the sight which makes supposed terror true — William Shakespeare
b : considered probable or certain : expected it was not supposed that everybody could master the technical aspects— J. C. Murray
c : understood you will be supposed to refer to my grandaunt— G. B. Shaw
3 : made or fashioned by intent or design what's that button supposed to do
4a : required by or as if by authority soldiers are supposed to obey their commanding officers
b : given permission : permitted was not supposed to have visitors

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Examples of supposed in a Sentence

this new computer program is a supposed improvement over the old one
Recent Examples on the Web The article that details the supposed event was posted on a website that describes itself as satire and posts sharing the story do not note that. Nayeli Lomeli, USA TODAY, "Fact check: Story about bull sharks in Arkansas river started as satire," 31 Mar. 2021 The supposed suppression of creators or content in YouTube search results for unexplained reasons. Daysia Tolentino, Vulture, "Terms of Service: Your Guide to the Lingo of TeaTube," 6 Mar. 2021 The supposed PlaySation employee account is still active. Janhoi Mcgregor, Forbes, "PS5 Goldrush: Restock Accounts Are Making “Thousands” As Scammers Hijack Popular Twitter Profiles," 2 Mar. 2021 On Tuesday, a bipartisan group of senators introduced legislation that would aim to hold Russia accountable by imposing sanctions on Russian officials complicit in any supposed violation of International law. Mike Brest, Washington Examiner, "Kremlin dismisses international calls to release Navalny," 19 Jan. 2021 The supposed defensive ace who endured the same baptism-by-fire approach as a rookie. Chris Fedor, cleveland, "Inside the Cleveland Cavaliers’ Isaac Okoro plan: ‘It’s basically throw him to the wolves’ and watch him grow," 19 Feb. 2021 Raging Bull's image is built around the supposed trading success of its founders, Bishop and Bond. CBS News, "RagingBull stock-trading site accused of $137 million fraud," 8 Dec. 2020 Islanders goaltender Bill Smith had been merciless in his criticism of Gretzky, taunting his supposed defensive deficiencies by saying someone would have to take Gretzky by the hand and introduce him to his own goalie, among other slights. Los Angeles Times, "On Wayne Gretzky’s 60th birthday, let’s note his superior numbers and unrivaled class," 26 Jan. 2021 In 2025, just one dystopian year after the supposed end of the Russo-Ukraine war, an army vet, Sergiy (Andriy Rymaruk), ekes out a living trucking water to polluted areas of his native Eastern Ukraine. Joe Morgenstern, WSJ, "‘Atlantis’ Review: Sunken Souls," 21 Jan. 2021

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2a

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Time Traveler for supposed

Time Traveler

The first known use of supposed was in the 15th century

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Statistics for supposed

Last Updated

2 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Supposed.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 13 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for supposed



English Language Learners Definition of supposed

: claimed to be true or real


sup·​posed | \ sə-ˈpōzd How to pronounce supposed (audio) \

Kids Definition of supposed

1 : forced, expected, or required I am supposed to be home early.
2 : believed or claimed to be true or real the supposed murderer
3 : given permission I'm not supposed to stay out after dark.

Other Words from supposed

supposedly \ -​ˈpō-​zəd-​lē \ adverb

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Comments on supposed

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