View synonyms for state


[ steyt ]


  1. the condition of a person or thing, as with respect to circumstances or attributes:

    a state of health.

  2. the condition of matter with respect to structure, form, constitution, phase, or the like:

    water in a gaseous state.

  3. status, rank, or position in life; station:

    He dresses in a manner befitting his state.

    Synonyms: standing

  4. the style of living befitting a person of wealth and high rank:

    to travel in state.

  5. a particular condition of mind or feeling:

    to be in an excited state.

  6. an abnormally tense, nervous, or perturbed condition:

    He's been in a state since hearing about his brother's death.

  7. a politically unified people occupying a definite territory; nation.
  8. the territory, or one of the territories, of a government.
  9. Sometimes State. any of the bodies politic which together make up a federal union, as in the United States of America.
  10. the body politic as organized for civil rule and government ( church ).
  11. the operations or activities of a central civil government:

    affairs of state.

  12. State. Also called State Department. Informal. the Department of State.
  13. Printing. a set of copies of an edition of a publication which differ from others of the same printing because of additions, corrections, or transpositions made during printing or at any time before publication.
  14. the States, Informal. the United States (usually used outside its borders):

    After a year's study in Spain, he returned to the States.


  1. of or relating to the central civil government or authority.
  2. made, maintained, or chartered by or under the authority of one of the commonwealths that make up a federal union: a state bank.

    a state highway;

    a state bank.

  3. characterized by, attended with, or involving ceremony:

    a state dinner.

    Synonyms: dignified, imposing, ceremonial, stately

  4. used on or reserved for occasions of ceremony.

verb (used with object)

, stat·ed, stat·ing.
  1. to declare definitely or specifically:

    She stated her position on the case.

    Synonyms: affirm, asseverate, assert, aver

  2. to set forth formally in speech or writing:

    to state a hypothesis.

  3. to set forth in proper or definite form:

    to state a problem.

  4. to say.
  5. to fix or settle, as by authority.

    Synonyms: determine


/ steɪt /


  1. the condition of a person, thing, etc, with regard to main attributes
  2. the structure, form, or constitution of something

    a solid state

  3. any mode of existence
  4. position in life or society; estate
  5. ceremonious style, as befitting wealth or dignity

    to live in state

  6. a sovereign political power or community
  7. the territory occupied by such a community
  8. the sphere of power in such a community

    affairs of state

  9. often capital one of a number of areas or communities having their own governments and forming a federation under a sovereign government, as in the US
  10. often capital the body politic of a particular sovereign power, esp as contrasted with a rival authority such as the Church
  11. obsolete.
    a class or order; estate
  12. informal.
    a nervous, upset, or excited condition (esp in the phrase in a state )
  13. lie in state
    (of a body) to be placed on public view before burial
  14. state of affairs
    a situation; present circumstances or condition
  15. state of play
    the current situation


  1. controlled or financed by a state

    state university

  2. of, relating to, or concerning the State

    State trial

  3. involving ceremony or concerned with a ceremonious occasion

    state visit


  1. to articulate in words; utter
  2. to declare formally or publicly

    to state one's innocence

  3. to resolve
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Derived Forms

  • ˈstatable, adjective
  • ˈstatehood, noun
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Other Words From

  • stat·a·ble state·a·ble adjective
  • an·ti·state adjective
  • coun·ter·state verb counterstated counterstating
  • out·state verb (used with object) outstated outstating
  • sub·state noun
  • un·stat·a·ble adjective
  • un·state·a·ble adjective
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Word History and Origins

Origin of state1

First recorded in 1175–1225; Middle English noun stat(e), partly from estat estate, partly from Latin status “condition” ( status ); the meanings state indefs 7, 8, 9, 10, 11 derive from Latin status (rērum) ) “state (of things)” or status (reī pūblicae) “state (of the republic)”
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Word History and Origins

Origin of state1

C13: from Old French estat , from Latin status a standing, from stāre to stand
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Idioms and Phrases

  1. lie in state, (of a corpse) to be exhibited publicly with honors before burial:

    The president's body lay in state for two days.

  2. state of mind. state of mind.

More idioms and phrases containing state

In addition to the idiom beginning with state , also see in a lather (state) ; in state ; ship of state .
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Synonym Study

State, condition, situation, status are terms for existing circumstances or surroundings. State is the general word, often with no concrete implications or material relationships: the present state of affairs. Condition carries an implication of a relationship to causes and circumstances: The conditions made flying impossible. Situation suggests an arrangement of circumstances, related to one another and to the character of a person: He was master of the situation. Status carries official or legal implications; it suggests a complete picture of interrelated circumstances as having to do with rank, position, standing, a stage reached in progress, etc.: the status of negotiations. See maintain.
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Example Sentences

Halfway there, however, we passed two of the largest waterfalls in the state.

Due to the chemicals and the state the hair has been in, it will initially be damaged, but she will have hair.

Details were kept secret by 50-a, a state law that has barred the public from seeing police discipline records.

That’s why Abdur-Rahim pushed the G League, which typically functions like the NBA’s minor leagues, to offer financial, personal and professional incentives to keep elite high school players in the states.

Simon operates more than 200 properties in 38 states, all of which had to shutter operations in late March due to the pandemic.

From Quartz

Dental leaders barnstormed the state, and cities began to fluoridate.

But on Thursday Boxer triggered a Golden State political earthquake, announcing that she would not seek a fifth term in 2016.

Meanwhile, in Florida, Bush was flooded with questions about whether gay marriage could possibly come to the Sunshine State.

This week, Florida became the 36th state to allow same-sex marriage.

But if you have a hearing and you prove that someone is mature enough, well then that state interest evaporates.

If we can free this State of Yankees, we will accomplish more than your armies down south have.

Walls End Castle, when the party broke up, returned to its normal state.

The next morning he came rushing into the office, in a violent state of excitement.

He could not tell what I meant by secrets of state, where an enemy or some rival nation were not in the case.

From the very first of the war their work was to help exterminate the guerrilla bands which infested the State.


Definitions and idiom definitions from Unabridged, based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

Idioms from The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.




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