The Meaning of Recipient: What It Is and How To Use It

Do you know the definition of recipient? This article will provide you with all of the information you need on the word recipient, including its definition, usage, word origin, and more!

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What does the word recipient mean?

According to the Merriam-Webster Unabridged Dictionary of the English Language as well as other English dictionaries like Collins English Dictionary and American Heritage, the word recipient is a noun that refers to a person or thing that receives or takes. In medicine, this word is specifically used to refer to someone who receives blood, tissue, or an organ from a donor, and in chemistry, the portion of an alembic or other still in which the distilled liquid is collected. Recipient is four syllables – re-cip-i-ent, and the pronunciation of recipient is rɪˈsɪpɪənt. 

Many different languages also use words that mean recipient. You may notice that some of these words look similar to one another. This is probably due to the fact that they share a common origin. Oftentimes, words that have a shared root language such as Latin or Greek will look, sound, and mean similar things. These are called cognates. This list of translations for the word recipient is provided by Word Sense

  •  Dutch: ontvanger‎ (masc.), ontvangster‎ (fem.)
  •  Meänkieli: vasthaanottaja‎
  •  Swedish: mottagare‎
  •  Russian: получа́тель‎ (masc.), получа́тельница‎ (fem.), реципие́нт‎ (masc.)
  •  German: Empfänger‎ (masc.), Empfängerin‎ (fem.)
  •  Greek: παραλήπτης‎ (masc.), αποδέκτης‎ (masc.)
  •  Finnish: vastaanottaja‎
  •  Czech: příjemce‎ (masc.)
  •  Norman: r’chéveux‎ (masc.), èrchéveux‎ (masc.)
  •  Portuguese: receptor‎ (masc.)
  •  Lojban: te dunda
  •  Danish: modtager‎ (common)
  •  Hungarian: fogadó‎ (who receives something), átvevő‎ (who receives an object personally from a middleman, especially a postman), címzett‎
  •  French: receveur‎ (masc.), receveuse‎ (fem.), destinataire‎ (masc.) (f), récipiendaire‎ (masc.) (f)
  •  Slovene: prejemnik‎ (masc.), prejemnica‎ (fem.)
  •  Spanish: receptor‎ (masc.), receptora‎ (fem.)
  •  Mandarin: 收件人‎ (shōujiàn rén), 接受者‎ (jiēshòuzhě)
  •  Macedonian: примател‎, примач‎
  •  Japanese: 受取人‎ (うけとりにん, uketorinin)
  •  Arabic: مُسْتَلِم‎ (masc.)

How can the word recipient be used in a sentence?

The word recipient can be used in many different ways in the English language. Using words in a sentence is a great way to memorize their definition. You can also try making flashcards or quizzes for yourself to test your knowledge of the definitions of different words. Try using this word of the day in a sentence today! Below are several examples of recipient to get you started.

The embryo was formed by conjoining the sperm with the recipient egg cell. It was later transplanted into the surrogate and carried to full term. The parents were happy that their child would have their own genetic instructions and genetic markers, and hoped they would take after their behaviors as well. 

The recipient was extremely grateful for his donors. After his accident, he needed a kidney, recipient liver, and spleen, and was also the recipient of transplanted tissue to recover his burned skin. 

The student at Princeton University in the United States was the recipient of honors from the school. This in turn made the honoree the recipient of funds from an influential patron as his protege in chemistry.

He was the recipient of a warrant for his appearance in court to settle the matters of the terms of a will and who the title of property belonged to. The warrant made him promise to appear with the other conferees, and he hoped he would be the final warrantee and heritor of the family property.

The donor countries adjusted their own public policy to be able to provide for the biggest recipient countries, Israel, Indonesia, and others. These recipient nations did not care for such insignificant items, such things as medals or dialogue. They were starving, and the rich countries only put a greater emphasis on a form of neo-colonialism and false promises. There needed to be a major shift in priority.

What is the origin of the word recipient?

According to Etymonline, the word recipient has been used since the 1550s, from the 16c French récipient and the Latin recipientem, the nominative Latin recipiēns or Latin stem of recipiens from the present participle of recipere meaning to hold or contain. This has been used as an adjective in English since the 1610s. The related words receive and recipience also come from these same roots.

What are synonyms and antonyms of recipient?

There are many different words that someone can use in place of the word recipient. These are called synonyms, which are words and phrases that have the same definition as another word or phrase. Synonyms are useful to know if you are trying to avoid repeating yourself as well as if you are looking to expand your English language vocabulary. This list of synonyms for the word recipient is provided by Thesaurus

  •  beneficiary
  •  consignee
  •  heir
  •  subject
  •  customer
  •  legatee
  •  acceptor
  •  conferree
  •  teller
  •  target
  •  assignee
  •  cashier
  •  awardee
  •  collector
  •  trustee
  •  inheritor
  •  annuitant
  •  grantee
  •  creditor
  •  donee

There are also many different words that have the opposite meaning of the word recipient. These opposite words are known as antonyms, and are also useful to know if you are trying to expand your vocabulary. This list of antonyms for the word recipient is also provided by Thesaurus

  •  subscriber
  •  backer
  •  patron
  •  almsgiver
  •  heavy hitter
  •  altruist
  •  conferrer
  •  presenter
  •  benefactor
  •  philanthropist
  •  Santa Claus
  •  grantor
  •  donor
  •  benefactress
  •  giver
  •  angel
  •  savior
  •  donator
  •  contributor
  •  bestower

Overall, the word recipient is a noun that refers to a person or thing that receives or gets something. This is the opposite of a giver or donor. The word recipient is often used in the medical field to refer to a person who receives some sort of organ, tissue or blood. This word is of French and Latin origins. Try using this word of the day today!


  1. recipient: meaning, origin, translation | Word Sense 
  2. RECIPIENT Synonyms: 8 Synonyms & Antonyms for RECIPIENT | Thesaurus 
  3. GIVER Synonyms: 21 Synonyms & Antonyms for GIVER | Thesaurus 
  4. Recipient Etymology | Online Etymology Dictionary 
  5. Recipient | Definition of Recipient | Merriam-Webster