[ uh-pawr-shuhn-muhnt, uh-pohr- ]
See synonyms for apportionment on
  1. the act of apportioning.

  2. the determination of the number of members of the U.S. House of Representatives according to the proportion of the population of each state to the total population of the U.S.

  1. the apportioning of members of any other legislative body.

Origin of apportionment

First recorded in 1620–30; apportion + -ment

Other words from apportionment

  • non·ap·por·tion·ment, noun
  • pro·ap·por·tion·ment, adjective

Words Nearby apportionment Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use apportionment in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for apportionment


/ (əˈpɔːʃənmənt) /

  1. the act of apportioning

  2. US government the proportional distribution of the seats in a legislative body, esp the House of Representatives, on the basis of population

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Cultural definitions for apportionment


The allocation of seats in a legislature or of taxes according to a plan. In the United States Congress, for example, the apportionment of seats in the House of Representatives is based on the relative population of each state, whereas the apportionment in the Senate is based on equal representation for every state. (See also gerrymander.)

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.