verb (used with object)

  1. to choose in preference to another or others; pick out.

verb (used without object)

  1. to make a choice; pick.


  1. chosen in preference to another or others; selected.
  2. choice; of special value or excellence.
  3. careful or fastidious in selecting; discriminating.
  4. carefully or fastidiously chosen; exclusive: a select group of friends.


  1. to choose (someone or something) in preference to another or others


  1. Also: selected chosen in preference to another or others
  2. of particular quality or excellence
  3. limited as to membership or entrya select gathering
  4. careful in making a choice

adj.1560s, from Latin selectus, past participle of seligere “choose out, single out, select; separate, cull,” from se- “apart” (see secret (n.)) + legere “to gather, select” (see lecture (n.)). The noun meaning “a selected person or thing, that which is choice” is recorded from c.1600. New England selectman first recorded 1640s. v.1560s, from select (adj.) or from Latin selectus. Related: Selected; selecting.

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