• synonyms


[verb dez-ig-neyt; adjective dez-ig-nit, -neyt]
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verb (used with object), des·ig·nat·ed, des·ig·nat·ing.
  1. to mark or point out; indicate; show; specify.
  2. to denote; indicate; signify.
  3. to name; entitle; style.
  4. to nominate or select for a duty, office, purpose, etc.; appoint; assign.
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  1. named or selected for an office, position, etc., but not yet installed (often used in combination following the noun it modifies): ambassador-designate.
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Origin of designate

1640–50; < Latin dēsignātus, past participle of dēsignāre. See design, -ate1
Related formsdes·ig·na·tive, des·ig·na·to·ry [dez-ig-nuh-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee, dez-ig-ney-tuh-ree] /ˈdɛz ɪg nəˌtɔr i, -ˌtoʊr i, ˌdɛz ɪgˈneɪ tə ri/, adjectivedes·ig·na·tor, nounde·des·ig·nate, verb (used with object), de·des·ig·nat·ed, de·des·ig·nat·ing.non·des·ig·nate, adjectivenon·des·ig·na·tive, adjectivere·des·ig·nate, verb (used with object), re·des·ig·nat·ed, re·des·ig·nat·ing.un·des·ig·nat·ed, adjectiveun·des·ig·na·tive, adjectivewell-des·ig·nat·ed, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for designated

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • With a gesture he designated the Fathers of the Grotto, whom he avoided naming.

  • He who was designated First among the council of the Mureess answered.

    Join Our Gang?

    Sterling E. Lanier

  • I have designated this degeneration by the term blastophthoria.

  • Thus the Street of the Holy Ghost contains the church so designated.

    Aztec Land

    Maturin M. Ballou

  • Charles designated his brother Henry, the King of Poland, as his successor.

British Dictionary definitions for designated


  1. logic (of a truth value) corresponding to truth in a two-valued logic, or having one of the analogous values in a many-valued logic
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verb (ˈdɛzɪɡˌneɪt) (tr)
  1. to indicate or specify
  2. to give a name to; style; entitle
  3. to select or name for an office or duty; appoint
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adjective (ˈdɛzɪɡnɪt, -ˌneɪt)
  1. (immediately postpositive) appointed, but not yet in officea minister designate
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Derived Formsdesignative or designatory (ˌdɛzɪɡˈneɪtrɪ), adjectivedesignator, noun

Word Origin

C15: from Latin dēsignātus marked out, defined; see design
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

Word Origin and History for designated


past participle adjective from designate. Designated hitter introduced in American League baseball in 1973, soon giving wide figurative extension to designated, e.g. designated driver, by 1985.

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1640s, from Latin designatus, past participle of designare (see design (v.)).

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As a verb, from 1791, from designate (adj.) or else a back-formation from designation. Related: Designated; designating.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper