Definition of official in English:


Line breaks: of|fi¦cial
Pronunciation: /əˈfɪʃ(ə)l



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  • 1A person holding public office or having official duties, especially as a representative of an organization or government department: a union official
    More example sentences
    • Mostly obviously they now can use the right to be represented by a union official in disciplinaries.
    • He said that the questioning of another media representative and a public official is expected today.
    • The small boxes were delivered to his office through an official in the Department of Foreign Affairs.
    officer, office-holder, office-bearer, administrator, executive, appointee, functionary; bureaucrat, dignitary, mandarin; representative, agent
    derogatory apparatchik
    British jack-in-office
  • 1.1 (also official principal) British The presiding officer or judge of an archbishop’s, bishop’s, or archdeacon’s court.



More example sentences
  • It is not the intention of this study to analyse the minor officialdom of borough bureaucracies that backed up the executive.
  • The greed of the state officialdom is a direct expression of its role as the defender of private property.
  • And right now, officialdom on every level seems to be obstructing their resolution.


More example sentences
  • Actually, to delay reporting about disasters is almost a tradition here, partly because of officialism and localism.
  • Stunned by the cultural assumptions of this re-christening, Tseng became Kwong Chi in his photographs, posing with phony officialism in front of famous landmarks.
  • It is alarming that surgeries are bogged down by farcical officialism and red tape, instead of leaving medical staff to use their own discretion.


(also officialise) verb
More example sentences
  • They supposedly prefer dollars to pesos already, so it wouldn't be a big deal to officialize it.
  • When it came time for his brother to sign the witness statement officialising the marriage, he paused for several long moments and simply looked at the groom.


Middle English (originally as a noun): via Old French from Latin officialis, from officium (see office).

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a small amount; a little