- to recognize or establish as being a particular person or thing; verify the identity of: to identify handwriting; to identify the bearer of a check.
- to serve as a means of identification for: His gruff voice quickly identified him.
- to make, represent to be, or regard or treat as the same or identical: They identified Jones with the progress of the company.
- to associate in name, feeling, interest, action, etc. (usually followed by with): He preferred not to identify himself with that group.
- Biology. to determine to what group (a given specimen) belongs.
- Psychology. to associate (one or oneself) with another person or a group of persons by identification.
- to associate oneself in feeling, interest, action, etc., with a specified group or belief system (usually followed by as or with): He identifies as bisexual. She identifies with feminism. My family identifies Hispanic.
- to experience psychological identification: The audience identified with the play's characters.
Origin of identify
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for identify
We have thousands of users who identify themselves as transgendered and they are welcome members of the Grindr community.
He loves the fact that, like on Grindr, users can identify as transgender.
Certainly my instinct is to identify with the police, no matter the circumstance.A Veteran’s View: NYC Cold War Between Cops and City Hall
December 29, 2014
The others are difficult to identify, since they reacted with other oxygen-bearing molecules in the soil.Methane on Mars: Life or Just Gas?
Matthew R. Francis
December 17, 2014
The idea was to identify what they are and apply them to different snacks, beverages, and foods.The Science of Ingredient Innovation
December 15, 2014
Why not take Farrell down to Brookfield to identify Mortimer.Thoroughbreds
W. A. Fraser
It did not need Mali-ya-bwana's whispered "faru" (rhinoceros) to identify the mound.The Leopard Woman
Stewart Edward White
It does not require a professional beggar or a licensed guide to identify him.The American Mind
This is one of our most abundant mushrooms, and the easiest for the beginner to identify.
Its manner of growth and its delicate shape of white will serve to identify it.
- to prove or recognize as being a certain person or thing; determine the identity of
- to consider as the same or equivalent
- (also intr often foll by with) to consider (oneself) as similar to another
- to determine the taxonomic classification of (a plant or animal)
- (intr usually foll by with) psychol to engage in identification
Word Origin and History for identify
1640s, "regard as the same," from French identifier, from identité (see identity). Sense of "recognize" first recorded 1769. Meaning "make one (with), associate (oneself)" is from 1780. Sense of "serve as means of identification" is attested by 1886. Related: Identified; identifying.