Origin of substitute

1350–1400; Middle English < Latin substitūtus (past participle of substituere to put in place of), equivalent to sub- sub- + -stitū-, combining form of statū-, past participle stem of statuere (see substituent) + -tus past participle suffix

SYNONYMS FOR substitute

Related forms

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for substitutionary

  • Evidently here is the notion of a substitutionary offering, although the reason given is not the true reason.

    Bible Studies|Joseph M. Wheeler
  • I could not be disrated, as I was only a cabin-boy, but a substitutionary penalty was invoked against me.

  • It was substitutionary; the victim stood in place of the offerer.

    Two Old Faiths|J. Murray Mitchell and William Muir

British Dictionary definitions for substitutionary


/ (ˈsʌbstɪˌtjuːt) /



Derived Forms

substitutable, adjectivesubstitutability, noun

Word Origin for substitute

C16: from Latin substituere, from sub- in place of + statuere to set up


Substitute is sometimes wrongly used where replace is meant: he replaced (not substituted) the worn tyre with a new one
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