Substitute definition

sŭbstĭ-to͝ot, -tyo͝ot
(grammar) A word or construction used in place of another word, phrase, or clause.
noun
10
3
To put or use in place of another.
verb
10
3
One that takes the place of another; a replacement.
noun
12
6
To put or use (a person or thing) in place of another.
verb
8
3
The definition of substitute is someone or something used in place of another person or thing.

An example of substitute used as an adjective is a substitute teacher who comes in when a teacher is sick.

adjective
5
2
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(intransitive) To serve as a replacement (for someone or something)
verb
2
1
To act or serve in place of another.
verb
2
3
Substitute means to use something instead of the originally needed item or to have a person do something for another.

An example of to substitute is to use applesauce instead of oil in a recipe.

An example of to substitute is to have someone run for a hitter in a baseball game.

verb
0
1
To use in place of something else, with the same function.

I had no shallots so I substituted onion.

verb
0
1
In the phrase "substitute X for Y", to use X in place of Y.

I had to substitute new parts for the old ones.

verb
0
1
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In the phrase "substitute X with/by Y", to use Y in place of X.

I had to substitute old parts with the new ones.

verb
0
1
(sports) To remove (a player) from the field of play and bring on another in his place.

He was playing poorly and was substituted after twenty minutes.

verb
0
1
A replacement or stand-in for something that achieves a similar result or purpose.
noun
0
1
(sports) A player who is available to replace another if the need arises, and who may or may not actually do so.
noun
0
1
(historical) One who enlists for military service in the place of a conscript.
noun
0
1
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(now rare) To take the place of.
verb
1
3
Substitute is defined as a person or thing acting in place of something else.

An example of a substitute is a shirt offered at a store when the original shirt listed in a sale flyer has sold out.

noun
0
3
(chemistry) To replace (one or more atoms or groups in a compound) by other atoms or groups.
verb
0
3
To take the place of another.
verb
0
3
A person or thing serving or used in place of another.
noun
0
3
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(gram.) Any word or word group, as a pronoun, the verb to do, etc., used in place of another word or words (Ex.: did for shouted in “she shouted, and he did, too”)
noun
0
3
(chem.) To replace as a substituent.
verb
0
3
Being a substitute or substitutes.
adjective
0
3

Other Word Forms

Noun

Singular:
substitute
Plural:
substitutes

Origin of substitute

  • Middle English from Old French substitut from Latin substitūtus past participle of substituere to substitute sub- in place of sub– statuere to cause to stand stā- in Indo-European roots

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • From Latin substitutum, past participle of substituo.

    From Wiktionary