Definition of designate in English:


Line breaks: des¦ig|nate


Pronunciation: /ˈdɛzɪgneɪt
[with object]
  • 1Appoint (someone) to a specified office or post: he was designated as prime minister
    More example sentences
    • Their draft code urges each organisation to set up and publish details of a system for dealing with complaints; and to appoint or designate a member of staff to act as ombudsman.
    • If the parent is fit to take care of a child, here in family court, you designate that parent as the guardian.
    • Financial experts suggest consulting a professional to create a detailed estate plan, which will put in writing where you want assets to go and designate a family member, relative, or trusted adult to execute it.
    appoint, nominate, depute, delegate; select, choose, pick, decide on, settle on; elect, name, identify, assign, allot, co-opt, ordain, induct
    informal plump for
  • 1.1Officially give a specified status or name to: [with object and complement]: the Wye Valley is designated an area of outstanding natural beauty certain schools are designated ‘science schools’
    More example sentences
    • The engineering status will be designated to the school from September.
    • We follow the general rules of zebrafish nomenclature for designating locus and allele names.
    • Perhaps it might increase the awareness of the problem if we were officially to designate a day in the year in testimony to them.
    classify, class, pronounce, label, tag; name, call, entitle, term, christen, dub, style, brand
    formal denominate


Pronunciation: /ˈdɛzɪgnət
[postpositive] Back to top  
  • Appointed to an office or post but not yet installed: the Director designate
    More example sentences
    • He was appointed director designate in February, but was originally not to take over until December.
    • Much has been made of the suggestion that the supposedly moderate prime minister designate intends to disband the militias.
    • Our cameras now take you to the Central Polling Office to hear from the Prime Minister designate.



Pronunciation: /-neɪtə/
More example sentences
  • It is routine administrative traffic full of alphanumeric designators that mean little without a cue sheet, a recitation of mileages, case numbers and criminal histories.
  • Military personnel should use their support group designator and address when indicating their current assignment.
  • They need the night-vision systems and these laser designators for targeting, so we see an increase here, too.


mid 17th century (as an adjective): from Latin designatus 'designated', past participle of designare, based on signum 'a mark'.

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Pronunciation: skəʊʃ
a small amount; a little