noun, often attributive
sur·​ro·​gate | \ ˈsər-ə-gət How to pronounce surrogate (audio) , ˈsə-rə-, -ˌgāt How to pronounce surrogate (audio) \

Definition of surrogate

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : one appointed to act in place of another : deputy
b : a local judicial officer in some states (such as New York) who has jurisdiction over the probate of wills, the settlement of estates, and the appointment and supervision of guardians
3 : one that serves as a substitute


sur·​ro·​gate | \ ˈsər-ə-ˌgāt How to pronounce surrogate (audio) , ˈsə-rə- \
surrogated; surrogating

Definition of surrogate (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to put in the place of another:
a : to appoint as successor, deputy, or substitute for oneself

Examples of surrogate in a Sentence

Noun He could not attend the meeting, so he sent his surrogate. The governor and her surrogates asked the public to support the change. They had their baby through a surrogate.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Chopra Jonas and husband Nick Jonas, 29, welcomed their daughter via surrogate in January. Angela Andaloro, Peoplemag, 11 Aug. 2022 Late night, new mom of two Khloé Kardashian was photographed out for the first time since news broke on Friday that her baby boy was born via surrogate. Alyssa Bailey, ELLE, 9 Aug. 2022 Chopra and Jonas welcomed Malti via surrogate this past January. Chelsey Sanchez, Harper's BAZAAR, 8 Aug. 2022 The 38-year-old reality star recently welcomed a baby boy via surrogate with ex Tristan Thompson. Sam Reed, Glamour, 8 Aug. 2022 Their son’s birth comes less than a month after news broke that the former couple would welcome the child via surrogate. Los Angeles Times, 8 Aug. 2022 No name has yet been announced for Kardashian and Thompson’s second child, a baby boy who arrived via surrogate. Ryan Gajewski, The Hollywood Reporter, 6 Aug. 2022 The twins were born shortly before the birth of Musk's second child with musician Grimes, who welcomed a baby girl named Exa Dark Sideræl Musk via surrogate in December. Aimee Picchi, CBS News, 8 July 2022 Last week, Khloé — who is mom to True Thompson and is expecting another baby with ex Tristan Thompson via surrogate — shared more photos out in the sun with her 4-year-old daughter. Angela Andaloro,, 25 July 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'surrogate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of surrogate


1603, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1533, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for surrogate


Latin surrogatus, past participle of surrogare to choose in place of another, substitute, from sub- + rogare to ask — more at right

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Time Traveler for surrogate

Time Traveler

The first known use of surrogate was in 1533

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Dictionary Entries Near surrogate



surrogate mother

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Statistics for surrogate

Last Updated

13 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Surrogate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 14 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for surrogate


sur·​ro·​gate | \ -gət, -ˌgāt How to pronounce surrogate (audio) \

Medical Definition of surrogate

: one that serves as a substitute: as
a : a representation of a person substituted through symbolizing (as in a dream) for conscious recognition of the person
b : a drug substituted for another drug


sur·​ro·​gate | \ ˈsər-ə-gət How to pronounce surrogate (audio) \

Legal Definition of surrogate

1 : one acting in the place of another especially : one standing in loco parentis to a child
2 often capitalized : the judge or judicial officer of a Surrogate's Court or Surrogate's office

Other Words from surrogate

surrogate adjective

History and Etymology for surrogate

Latin surrogatus, past participle of surrogare subrogare to substitute, from sub- in place of, under + rogare to ask


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