tr.v. des·ig·nat·ed, des·ig·nat·ing, des·ig·nates
1. To indicate or specify; point out: a fence that designates the property boundary.
2. To give a name or title to; characterize: The 1920s have been designated as the "Roaring Twenties."
Appointed but not yet installed in office: the commissioner designate.
[Latin dēsignāre, dēsignāt- : dē-, de- + signāre, to mark (from signum, sign; see sekw-1 in the Appendix of Indo-European roots).]
desig·na′tive, desig·na·to′ry (-nə-tôr′ē) adj.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2019 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.