struc·​ture | \ ˈstrək-chər How to pronounce structure (audio) \

Definition of structure

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the action of building : construction
2a : something (such as a building) that is constructed
b : something arranged in a definite pattern of organization a rigid totalitarian structure— J. L. Hess leaves and other plant structures
3 : manner of construction : makeup Gothic in structure
4a : the arrangement of particles or parts in a substance or body soil structure molecular structure
b : organization of parts as dominated by the general character of the whole economic structure personality structure
c : coherent form or organization tried to give some structure to the children's lives
5 : the aggregate of elements of an entity in their relationships to each other the structure of a language


structured; structuring\ ˈstrək-​chə-​riŋ How to pronounce structure (audio) , ˈstrək-​shriŋ \

Definition of structure (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to form into or according to a structure
2 : construct

Other Words from structure


structureless \ ˈstrək-​chər-​ləs How to pronounce structure (audio) \ adjective
structurelessness \ ˈstrək-​chər-​ləs-​nəs How to pronounce structure (audio) \ noun

Synonyms for structure

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of structure in a Sentence

Noun They studied the compound's molecular structure. The film had a simple narrative structure. the structure of a plant the social structure of a college campus changes to the company's power structure The structure was damaged by fire. Children need a lot of structure in their lives. Verb She structured the essay chronologically. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The chemical structure of Delta-8 THC is very comparable to that of delta-9 THC, except for the position of the second bond on the chain of carbon atoms. The Salt Lake Tribune, 5 May 2022 And because the effects of dark energy are most pronounced at very large distance scales, the structure within individual voxels is irrelevant for these studies. Ben Brubaker, Scientific American, 4 May 2022 The two-story structure is intentionally thin in brick lattice design with openings to create airflow for natural cooling. Rod Berger, Forbes, 2 May 2022 The low-profile wood structure is simple and makes a great addition to a neutral bedroom. Mariah Thomas, Good Housekeeping, 1 May 2022 This structure is risky because a company can buckle under a heavy debt load. New York Times, 30 Apr. 2022 Henry’s bonus structure is similar to that of other assistants. Zach Osterman, The Indianapolis Star, 27 Apr. 2022 The structure is 33-feet wide—the size of two brownstone row houses—75-feet deep and 66-feet tall. Emma Reynolds, Robb Report, 19 Apr. 2022 The Dalton Highway is a useful tool to measure changes in climate, both because the road provides easier access to scientists monitoring efforts and because the structure itself is a barometer for the warming, Thoman said. Michelle Theriault Boots, Anchorage Daily News, 16 Apr. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Sanya continued to recruit tutors and develop and structure the non-profit, which took on additional projects such as collecting cans and bottles with more than $500 going to a fund for front-line health care workers. Christina Hall, Detroit Free Press, 7 May 2022 Maybe the way to generate better ideas remotely is to have fewer meetings but structure some of the work in very different ways. Walter Frick, Quartz, 29 Apr. 2022 In the Atlanta area, Ami has been going to Flying Change Equine Therapy to help raise his spirits and structure his time. Los Angeles Times, 21 Apr. 2022 Twitter is particularly susceptible to activists, analysts said, because its founders did not structure the company’s shares in a way that gave themselves more control. New York Times, 11 Apr. 2022 The study takes into account evolving transportation needs, with the COVID-19 pandemic, for example, leading to drastically altered commuting patterns as employers structure new, hybrid workplaces split between home and office. Kenneth R. Gosselin,, 6 Mar. 2022 Energy executives are hoping to structure contracts so that the gas goes to Europe in the short term and then eventually shifts to Asia, including India. Washington Post, 21 Apr. 2022 Futuro, a Brazilian think tank that helped structure and organize the Parque Sitiê project in Rio de Janeiro. Siobhan Reid, Vogue, 20 Apr. 2022 Some of this variation in rates reflects how people structure their businesses under tax law. ProPublica, 13 Apr. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of structure


1560, in the meaning defined at sense 2a


1664, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for structure


Middle English, from Latin structura, from structus, past participle of struere to heap up, build — more at strew

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Time Traveler for structure

Time Traveler

The first known use of structure was in 1560

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Dictionary Entries Near structure




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Statistics for structure

Last Updated

9 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Structure.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for structure


struc·​ture | \ ˈstrək-chər How to pronounce structure (audio) \

Kids Definition of structure

1 : something built or arranged in a definite way He entered a small brick structure. We studied leaves and other plant structures.
2 : the manner in which something is built, arranged, or organized the structure of the body


struc·​ture | \ ˈstrək-chər How to pronounce structure (audio) \

Medical Definition of structure

1 : something (as an anatomical part) arranged in a definite pattern of organization
2a : the arrangement of particles or parts in a substance or body molecular structure
b : organization of parts as dominated by the general character of the whole personality structure
3 : the aggregate of elements of an entity in their relationships to each other

More from Merriam-Webster on structure

Nglish: Translation of structure for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of structure for Arabic Speakers


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