What does dependent mean?

Definitions for dependent
dɪˈpɛn dəntde·pen·dent

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word dependent.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. dependant, dependentadjective

    a person who relies on another person for support (especially financial support)

  2. dependentadjective

    relying on or requiring a person or thing for support, supply, or what is needed

    "dependent children"; "dependent on moisture"

  3. dependent, dependant, qualifiedadjective

    contingent on something else

  4. dependent, subordinateadjective

    (of a clause) unable to stand alone syntactically as a complete sentence

    "a subordinate (or dependent) clause functions as a noun or adjective or adverb within a sentence"

  5. pendent, pendant, dependentadjective

    held from above

    "a pendant bunch of grapes"

  6. subject, dependentadjective

    being under the power or sovereignty of another or others

    "subject peoples"; "a dependent prince"

  7. dependent, dependant, drug-addicted, hooked, strung-outadjective

    addicted to a drug


  1. dependentnoun

    One who relies on another for support

    With two children and an ailing mother, she had three dependents in all ... (In British English, this meaning is spelt dependant.)

  2. dependentnoun

    An element in phrase or clause structure that is not the head. Includes complements modifiers and determiners.

  3. dependentnoun

    The aorist subjunctive or subjunctive perfective: a form of a verb not used independently but preceded by a particle to form the negative or a tense form. Found in Greek and in the Gaelic languages.

  4. dependentadjective

    Relying upon; depending upon

    At that point I was dependent on financial aid for my tuition.

  5. dependentadjective

    (of certain Irish irregular verbs): standing only after a preverbal particle

  6. dependentadjective

    Used in questions, negative sentences and after certain particles and prepositions.

  7. dependentadjective

    (in medicine:) affecting the lower part of the body, such as the legs while standing up, or the back while supine

  8. Etymology: Originally dependant, from dépendant, present participle of dépendre (in English assimilated to dependentem).

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Dependentadjective

    Hanging down.

    Etymology: dependens, Latin. This, as many other words of like termination, are written with ent or ant, as they are supposed to flow from the Latin or French.

    None may wear this furr but princes; and there is a certain number of ranks allowed to dukes, marquisses, and earls, which they must not exceed in lining their caps therewith. In the time of Charles the Great, and long since, the whole furrs in the tails were dependent; but now that fashion is left, and the spots only worn, without the tails. Henry Peacham, on Blazoning.

  2. Dependentnoun

    One subordinate; one at the discretion or disposal of another.

    Etymology: from dependens, Latin.

    We are indigent, defenceless beings; the creatures of his power, and the dependents of his providence. John Rogers, Sermons.


  1. dependent

    A dependant is a person who relies on another as a primary source of income. A common-law spouse who is financially supported by their partner may also be included in this definition. In some jurisdictions, supporting a dependant may enable the provider to claim a tax deduction. In the United Kingdom, a full-time student in higher education who financially supports another adult may qualify for an Adult Dependant's Grant.


  1. dependent

    Dependent refers to relying on or being affected by something or someone else for support, assistance, or existence. This can relate to various contexts such as in biology, statistics, grammar, or social relationships. Examples include a child being dependent on their parents, or a particular outcome being dependent on a set of conditions or factors.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Dependentadjective

    hanging down; as, a dependent bough or leaf

  2. Dependentadjective

    relying on, or subject to, something else for support; not able to exist, or sustain itself, or to perform anything, without the will, power, or aid of something else; not self-sustaining; contingent or conditioned; subordinate; -- often with on or upon; as, dependent on God; dependent upon friends

  3. Dependentnoun

    one who depends; one who is sustained by another, or who relies on another for support of favor; a hanger-on; a retainer; as, a numerous train of dependents

  4. Dependentnoun

    that which depends; corollary; consequence

Suggested Resources

  1. Dependent

    Dependant vs. Dependent -- In this Grammar.com article you will learn the differences between the words Dependant and Dependent.


  1. Dependent

    hanging down.

British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'dependent' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #2697

  2. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'dependent' in Written Corpus Frequency: #4649

  3. Adjectives Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'dependent' in Adjectives Frequency: #364

How to pronounce dependent?

How to say dependent in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of dependent in Chaldean Numerology is: 9

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of dependent in Pythagorean Numerology is: 6

Examples of dependent in a Sentence

  1. Robert Ryan:

    The market could tighten significantly if the outage is indeed weeks and not days. You will see SPR draws. Arguably the world is dependent on strategic reserves right now.

  2. Jason Bordoff:

    We are much less dependent on foreign oil than we were before.

  3. Joel Kan:

    The housing market started 2022 on a strong note, mBA expects solid growth in purchase activity this year, as demographic drivers and the strong economy support housing demand. However, the strength in growth will be dependent on housing inventory growing more rapidly to meet demand.

  4. Rasmus Bech Hansen:

    They’re dependent on importing many (vaccines) from the U.S. And at the moment, it doesn’t seem very likely they will get very large quantities of for instance, the Pfizer vaccine.

  5. Makoto Noji:

    The stock markets’ rally during this pandemic is completely dependent on fiscal expansion and debt monetisation by central banks, political instability could delay fiscal measures.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for dependent

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

Get even more translations for dependent »


Find a translation for the dependent definition in other languages:

Select another language:

  • - Select -
  • 简体中文 (Chinese - Simplified)
  • 繁體中文 (Chinese - Traditional)
  • Español (Spanish)
  • Esperanto (Esperanto)
  • 日本語 (Japanese)
  • Português (Portuguese)
  • Deutsch (German)
  • العربية (Arabic)
  • Français (French)
  • Русский (Russian)
  • ಕನ್ನಡ (Kannada)
  • 한국어 (Korean)
  • עברית (Hebrew)
  • Gaeilge (Irish)
  • Українська (Ukrainian)
  • اردو (Urdu)
  • Magyar (Hungarian)
  • मानक हिन्दी (Hindi)
  • Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Italiano (Italian)
  • தமிழ் (Tamil)
  • Türkçe (Turkish)
  • తెలుగు (Telugu)
  • ภาษาไทย (Thai)
  • Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)
  • Čeština (Czech)
  • Polski (Polish)
  • Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Românește (Romanian)
  • Nederlands (Dutch)
  • Ελληνικά (Greek)
  • Latinum (Latin)
  • Svenska (Swedish)
  • Dansk (Danish)
  • Suomi (Finnish)
  • فارسی (Persian)
  • ייִדיש (Yiddish)
  • հայերեն (Armenian)
  • Norsk (Norwegian)
  • English (English)

Word of the Day

Would you like us to send you a FREE new word definition delivered to your inbox daily?

Please enter your email address:


Use the citation below to add this definition to your bibliography:


"dependent." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 3 Mar. 2024. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/dependent>.

Discuss these dependent definitions with the community:


    Are we missing a good definition for dependent? Don't keep it to yourself...

    Free, no signup required:

    Add to Chrome

    Get instant definitions for any word that hits you anywhere on the web!

    Free, no signup required:

    Add to Firefox

    Get instant definitions for any word that hits you anywhere on the web!

    Browse Definitions.net


    Are you a words master?

    fortitude and determination
    • A. guts
    • B. rateables
    • C. trigger
    • D. directory

    Nearby & related entries:

    Alternative searches for dependent: