Delegate vs relegate

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Delegate and relegate are two words that are similar in spelling and pronunciation but have very different meanings. We will look at the difference between the definitions of delegate and relegate, where these words came from and some examples of their use in sentences.

Delegate means to authorize a representative to act on your behalf, to entrust a job or responsibility to someone else. A delegate may mean someone who has been authorized as a representative to act on your behalf, often a committee member or a member of a governmental body who has been elected to cast votes on your behalf. Delegate is used as a verb and as a noun. Related words are delegates, delegated, delegating, delegation. The word delegate is derived from the Latin word delegatus, which means to send as a representative.

Relegate means to assign something or someone to an inferior position. In British English, relegate means to assign a sports team to a lower division. Relegate is a verb, related words are relegates, relegated, relegating, relegation. The word relegate is derived from the Latin word relegatus, which means to put aside, to banish, to remove.


Eni F. H. Faleomavaega, American Samoa’s longest-serving nonvoting delegate to the House of Representatives, died on Wednesday at his home in Provo, Utah. He was 73. (The New York Times)

Mr Hunter, who is a “shoppies union” delegate and an ALP campaign volunteer, works for Coles in western Sydney. (The Sydney Morning Herald)

If we raise them to believe in such a notion, will it relegate them to becoming unrealistic, hopelessly naive adults who literally believe anything is possible at any given moment, even when it’s abundantly clear to any reasonable person that at various, scattered moments in life, the outcome is clear. (The Crookston Times)

The FAI’s controversial plans to relegate three sides means the majority of clubs are on edge. (The Irish Mirror)