Did you know?

Click any word in a definition or example to find the entry for that word

official - definition and synonyms


What are red words?

90% of the time, speakers of English use just 7,500 words in speech and writing. These words appear in red, and are graded with stars. One-star words are frequent, two-star words are more frequent, and three-star words are the most frequent.



The thesaurus of synonyms and related words is fully integrated into the dictionary. Click on the thesaurus category heading under the button in an entry to see the synonyms and related words for that meaning.

adjective official pronunciation in American English /əˈfɪʃ(ə)l/
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  1. 1
    done by people in authority

    There will be an official investigation into last week’s accident.

    You’ll have to get official permission from the principal.

    1. b.
      used about information that someone in authority provides. This word is sometimes used for suggesting that the information is not completely reliable

      His name did not appear in the official report.

      The official version is that the whole thing was an accident.

    2. c.
      used about information that has been announced publicly

      It’s official – the princess is to marry next year.

  2. 2
    relating to your job, especially a job in which you have authority or represent other people

    The White House is the President’s official residence.

    a list of my official duties



to fall over forwards so that your face hits the ground or another surface

BuzzWord Article

Open Dictionary


the activity of exploring abandoned buildings and other manmade structures

add a word


A must for anyone with an interest in the changing face of language. The Macmillan Dictionary blog explores English as it is spoken around the world today.

global English and language change from our blog
Macmillan learn live love play