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[kon-sti-toot, -tyoot] /ˈkɒn stɪˌtut, -ˌtyut/
verb (used with object), constituted, constituting.
to compose; form:
mortar constituted of lime and sand.
to appoint to an office or function; make or create:
He was constituted treasurer.
to establish (laws, an institution, etc.).
to give legal form to (an assembly, court, etc.).
to create or be tantamount to:
Imports constitute a challenge to local goods.
Archaic. to set or place.
Origin of constitute
late Middle English
1400-50; late Middle English < Latin constitūtus (past participle of constituere; see constituent), equivalent to con- con- + -stitūtus, combining form of statūtum, past participle of statuere to set up. See statute
Related forms
constituter, constitutor, noun
nonconstituted, adjective
preconstitute, verb (used with object), preconstituted, preconstituting.
self-constituted, adjective
self-constituting, adjective
unconstituted, adjective
well-constituted, adjective
3. institute, commission. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for constitute
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Collectively they constitute, for consultation, the general manager's staff.

  • They will constitute one of the most striking pages in the history of our times.

  • A juicy pulp encloses a double membrane, or endocarp, and within the latter are the seeds which constitute the coffee of commerce.

    Commercial Geography Jacques W. Redway
  • What need we then to constitute a court, except a fool and a laureate?

    Maid Marian Thomas Love Peacock
  • The infinitesimal educated minority do not constitute the population of India.

    The New World of Islam Lothrop Stoddard
British Dictionary definitions for constitute


verb (transitive)
to make up; form; compose: the people who constitute a jury
to appoint to an office or function: a legally constituted officer
to set up (a school or other institution) formally; found
(law) to give legal form to (a court, assembly, etc)
(law, obsolete) to set up or enact (a law)
Derived Forms
constituter, constitutor, noun
Word Origin
C15: from Latin constituere, from com- (intensive) + statuere to place
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for constitute

mid-15c., verb use of adjective constitute, "made up, formed" (late 14c.), from Latin constitutus "arranged, settled," past participle adjective from constituere "to cause to stand, set up, fix, place, establish, set in order; form something new; resolve," of persons, "to appoint to an office," from com-, intensive prefix (see com-), + statuere "to set," from PIE root *sta- "to stand," with derivatives meaning "place or thing that is standing" (see stet). Related: Constituted; constituting.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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