variant

adjective
var·​i·​ant | \ ˈver-ē-ənt How to pronounce variant (audio) \

Definition of variant

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : manifesting variety, deviation, or disagreement
2 : varying usually slightly from the standard form variant readings variant spellings
3 obsolete : variable

variant

noun

Definition of variant (Entry 2 of 2)

: one of two or more persons or things exhibiting usually slight differences: such as
a : one that exhibits variation from a type or norm
b : one of two or more different spellings (such as labor and labour) or pronunciations (as of economics \ek-, ēk-\) of the same word
c : one of two or more words (such as geographic and geographical) or word elements (such as mon- and mono-) of essentially the same meaning differing only in the presence or absence of an affix

Examples of variant in a Sentence

Adjective

variant strains of a disease

Noun

A new variant of the disease has appeared.

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

These cells were produced by making them express minimally variant human leukocyte antigen class E molecules. Bradley J. Fikes, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Skin regeneration, universal donor stem cells and new SMA treatment approach," 15 May 2017 Prices can be widely variant from one side of town to the other, but stations that cluster near one another in areas of heavy traffic often compete closely on pricing. The Washington Post, The Denver Post, "Savings app Upside pits gas stations against one another," 2 Jan. 2017

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

During a media presentation, Cadillac product marketing director Jason Sledziewski alluded to the idea that a high-performance variant of the new sedan is forthcoming. Joey Capparella, Car and Driver, "The 2020 Cadillac CT5-V Officially Debuts May 30," 23 May 2019 For instance, in the past few years, researchers have learned that the genetic variants that can contribute to asthma in white children aren’t the same for African-American children. Brian Resnick, Vox, "Genetics has learned a ton — mostly about white people. That’s a problem.," 27 Oct. 2018 Another familiar color variant is the black panther, but — apologies to T’Challa — there is actually no such species. Elisa Neckar, Discover Magazine, "20 Things You Didn't Know About ... Big Cats," 8 May 2018 Her version of côt, the Loire Valley variant of malbec, is deeply purple, full of boysenberry aromas, and offers a palate that is vibrant, textural, and full of life. Ellen Bhang, BostonGlobe.com, "By the Glass: It’s natural to sip wines recommended by Alice Feiring," 26 Mar. 2018 One prominent variant is in Britain, which does not issue distinct standards for men and women. Joel Achenbach, The Seattle Times, "A huge clinical trial collapses, and research on alcohol remains befuddling," 6 Aug. 2018 More successful was a s’mores variant that looked like French fries and gravy — addictive fried strips of funnel cake bathed in a deep chocolate sauce, backed up by thick slabs of marshmallow. Tim Smith, baltimoresun.com, "A dessert disguised as a potted plant, and more surprises at Blair's on Hudson," 30 May 2018 This limited-edition variant boasts a maximum 840 horsepower and various modifications to improve straight-line acceleration. Washington Post, "Edmunds: Muscle cars that pack a punch," 25 Apr. 2018 The airplane has a historic connection to the I-X Center in that the facility was built during World War II to manufacture parts for B-29 bombers, and the Stratofreighter is based on a variant of the B-29 design. Brian Albrecht, cleveland.com, "I-X Center converting vintage military plane into restaurant and lounge (photos, videos)," 4 Feb. 2018

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

Adjective

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Noun

circa 1848, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for variant

Adjective

Middle English variaunt, borrowed from Anglo-French variant, borrowed from Latin variant-, varians "variegated, various," from present participle of variāre "to make changeable, vary"

Noun

noun derivative of variant entry 1

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Time Traveler for variant

The first known use of variant was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for variant

variant

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of variant

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: different in some way from others of the same kind

variant

noun

English Language Learners Definition of variant (Entry 2 of 2)

: something that is different in some way from others of the same kind
: one of two or more different ways to spell or pronounce a word

variant

adjective
var·​i·​ant | \ ˈver-ē-ənt How to pronounce variant (audio) \

Kids Definition of variant

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: differing from others of its kind or class variant spellings

variant

noun

Kids Definition of variant (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : one of two or more things that show slight differences A new variant of the disease has appeared.
2 : one of two or more different spellings or pronunciations of a word

variant

adjective
var·​i·​ant | \ ˈver-ē-ənt, ˈvar- How to pronounce variant (audio) \

Medical Definition of variant

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: manifesting variety or deviation : exhibiting variation variant forms of the disease

variant

noun

Medical Definition of variant (Entry 2 of 2)

: one that exhibits variation from a type, norm, or wild type : mutation also : one whose behavior is at variance with the norms of society

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More from Merriam-Webster on variant

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for variant

Spanish Central: Translation of variant

Nglish: Translation of variant for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of variant for Arabic Speakers

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