one to whom something is referred, especially for decision or settlement; arbitrator.
(in certain games and sports) a judge having functions fixed by the rules of the game or sport; umpire.
an authority who evaluates scientific, technical, or scholarly papers, grant proposals, or the like for the publication or funding institution to which they have been submitted.
Law. a person selected by a court to take testimony in a case and return it to the court with recommendations as to the decision.
verb (used with object), refereed, refereeing.
to preside over as referee; act as referee in.
verb (used without object), refereed, refereeing.
to act as referee.

1605–15; refer + -ee

1. arbiter. See judge. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
referee (ˌrɛfəˈriː)
1.  a person to whom reference is made, esp for an opinion, information, or a decision
2.  the umpire or judge in any of various sports, esp football and boxing, responsible for ensuring fair play according to the rules
3.  a person who is willing to testify to the character or capabilities of someone
4.  law See Official Referee
vb , -ees, -eeing, -eed
5.  to act as a referee (in); preside (over)

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

1621, "person who examines patent applications" (see refer). Sporting use is first recorded 1840 (specifically of baseball from 1856; shortened form ref is from 1899); the verb is first attested 1889, from the noun.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
Especially if it is intended for diminish the errors of referees.
The meeting referees flew over the gathering and asked for all the fungis'
Each game has twenty-two players, twenty-two coaches, and twenty-two referees.
Users can designate referees to monitor their progress and make sure they are
  reporting it accurately.
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