English Dictionary

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 (lɪˈdʒɪtɪmɪt Pronunciation for
  1. born in lawful wedlock; enjoying full filial rights
  2. conforming to established standards of usage, behaviour, etc
  3. based on correct or acceptable principles of reasoning
  4. reasonable, sensible, or valid   ⇒ a legitimate question
  5. authorized, sanctioned by, or in accordance with law
  6. of, relating to, or ruling by hereditary right   ⇒ a legitimate monarch
  7. of or relating to a body of famous long-established plays as distinct from films, television, vaudeville, etc   ⇒ the legitimate theatre


 (lɪˈdʒɪtɪˌmeɪt Pronunciation for
  1. (transitive) to make, pronounce, or show to be legitimate

Derived Forms

leˈgitimacy, leˈgitimateness noun
leˈgitimately adverb
leˌgitiˈmation noun

Word Origin

C15: from Medieval Latin lēgitimātus made legal, from lēx law


View thesaurus entry
= lawful, real, true, legal, acknowledged, sanctioned, genuine, proper, authentic, statutory, authorized, rightful, kosher, dinkum, legit, licit,
= legitimize, allow, permit, sanction, authorize, legalize, give the green light to, legitimatize, pronounce lawful

Translations for 'legitimate'

  • British English: legitimate Something that is legitimate is acceptable according to the law. ADJECTIVEThey have condemned the coup and demanded the restoration of the legitimate government.
  • Brazilian Portuguese: legítimo
  • Chinese: 合法的
  • European Spanish: legítimo legítima
  • French: légitime
  • German: rechtmäßig
  • Italian: legittimo legittima
  • Japanese: 合法の
  • Korean: 합법적인
  • Portuguese: legítimo legítima
  • Spanish: legítimo legítima

Example Sentences Including 'legitimate'

But, as embodied beings, embodiment is surely a legitimate object of curiosity for lay people as much as for medical professionals.
Irish Times (2002)
Fowler's legitimate claim for a penalty in the 66th minute, Henchoz the guilty party, was ignored.
Glasgow Herald (2002)
His own David had been killed in a legitimate war, a soldier fighting for his country.
Harcourt, Palma A Matter of Conscience
Many viruses, for example, insert themselves at the beginning or end of code for a legitimate programme.
New Scientist (2004)
More recently, the Mafia had developed a legitimate claim on him.
Mark Burnell CHAMELEON (2002)
So he's got an apparently legitimate source for living very high on the hog.
The ways politicians spend taxpayers ' money is, of course, a legitimate matter of public interest.
Glasgow Herald (2001)
There cannot be peace in the Middle East until Israel's neighbours accept its permanent legitimate existence.
Globe and Mail (2003)
This basic principle seems uncontroversial, yet the existence of the placebo response may suggest that deception is at times legitimate.
Dylan Evans PLACEBO: The Belief Effect (2003)


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