Has anyone ever said you did an exemplary job and left you wondering what exemplary even meant? The English language is full of strange words like this that, even when in the context of a sentence, can still leave us puzzled. So, I’ll take a few minutes and explain the meaning of the word exemplary and provide some quick examples of how to use the word.
Meaning of the Word Exemplary
The word “exemplary” is classified as an adjective, and we use it to describe something that serves as a model or the perfect example. It’s usually applied to things like behavior, character or quality.
- My son’s exemplary behavior during the event earned him a treat on the way home.
It shows that the person or thing being described is worthy of praise and admiration because of how good they are. But the word “exemplary” can also be used to denote something that’s a great example of the best in its category.
- The new Subaru is an exemplary SUV.
Etymology of Exemplary
The word as we know it has its roots in Latin, specifically the Latin word “exemplaris.” This comes from “exemplum,” which means “example” or “model.” It moved into the English language some time in the late 14th century through an Old French term, “exemplaire,” meaning “serving as an example.”
Over many years, the meaning evolved to include the positive connotations of anything being admirable and praiseworthy.
How to Pronounce Exemplary
I see people struggle with the pronunciation of exemplary all the time. But the technically correct way to say it is uhg-zem-plr-ee with an emphasis on the second syllable.
- Above board
Using Exemplary in a Sentence
- Nadia’s dedication and hard work make her an exemplary employee and a key part of the team here, and I’d like the others to use her as an example of what to aspire to.
- My son’s teacher showed exemplary patience and understanding while helping him learn with his ADHD to understand the lessons and achieve top grades.
- Candace’s new fantasy romance novel is an exemplary take on a Canadian setting, showing that not every popular book needs to be set in New York.
- My daughter’s piano recital was exemplary, earning her a spot in a prestigious competition.
- The soap company’s commitment to sustainability sets an exemplary standard for other indie soap makers to follow.
- The illustrator I hired did an exemplary job with my latest children’s book project. I’m definitely hiring him again.
- This new Thriller book I’m reading is an exemplary story for the genre. I’m utterly enthralled with the superior writing.
Exemplary Grammar Is Important
Understanding words like exemplary not only makes you sound smarter but also broadens your vocabulary so you understand others better, as well. Just remember that the word should be used to describe something or someone that’s an example of something amazing or better than expected.