When is it appropriate to use "titled" vs. "entitled"? For example, which is the correct word to use in the following sentence?

I really liked the conclusion to rands’ latest blog post entitled “How to Run a Meeting”.

6 Answers 6


From the NOAD:

titled /ˈtaɪdld/
(of a person) having a title indicating high social or official rank.

entitle /ɪnˈtaɪdl/ /ɛnˈtaɪdl/
verb [trans.] (usually be entitled)
1. give (someone) a legal right or a just claim to receive or do something: employees are normally entitled to severance pay | [trans.] the landlord is entitled to require references.
2. give (something, especially a text or work of art) a particular title: an article entitled "The Harried Society."
- [trans.] archaic give (someone) a specified title expressing their rank, office, or character: they entitled him Sultan.

In your example, you should say I really liked the conclusion to rands' latest blog post entitled "How to Run a Meeting."

  • I think NAOD has it right but what is missing is the active voice. To say something was 'entitled' as opposed to 'titled' is, as the NAOD points out archaic. IE: "I was looking at the painting titled 'Dejuener sur l'herbe'" vs "I was looking at the painting entitled 'Dejuener sur l'herbe'". Neither one is particularly right/wrong, but the latter is confusing.
    – mfg
    Aug 19, 2010 at 19:24
  • @mfg: Only the second meaning (to give someone a title) is reported to be archaic.
    – apaderno
    Aug 19, 2010 at 20:06
  • right, but the first example does not pertain to the title of the blog entry; the usage of the second definition is what the post is asking about.
    – mfg
    Aug 19, 2010 at 20:28
  • @mfg: That is 2.2; the OP is referring to 2.1, the one with an article entitled "The Harried Society." as example.
    – apaderno
    Aug 19, 2010 at 20:33

The verbs entitle and title are synonyms. Regarding nouns, title is a noun, entitle is not. Title on its own is an adjective (the title story - the story from the book the book got its title from), entitle is not. Entitle has an additional association to the meaning of having rights to or honor: I was entitled to the deduction.

The verb entitle regards the given name as a more distinguished feature of an object, more than the verb title.

When you say

The book is titled "Far away from here".

you are saying that technically it has that title, but when you say

The book is entitled "Far away from here".

you are implying some sort of preference, either that you liked the book, or that the title was appropriate, or that the book has become famous, or that you want to suggest people to read it, something that gives to the book more than just a simple title.

I entitle this book with her name.

means I am giving this book something special by giving it a title of more importance to me, suggesting strong emotions.

The director wanted to title the movie "Loud air".

means what it says. In this sentence using entitle instead of title would be kind of strange, unless something more is said about the movie or the director.

In your sentence "I really liked..." suggests preference, honor, and, although titled and entitled are both correct, entitled suggests "appropriately titled" or "nicely titled" which is what the author really wanted to express.


There is an interesting article on this topic at the following URL. It provides usage statistics. http://grammarist.com/usage/entitled-titled/

  • 2
    Hello and welcome! Please see how to answer questions, specifically: Provide context for links. Always quote or summarize the key points that you're linking to. May 20, 2013 at 1:12

"Titled", I believe, typically refers to title as in rank or nobility. "Entitled" means (for one) "to give a title to" or designate.

  • Entitled: To have a right to do something Apr 28, 2011 at 9:08

"Entitled" would denote a usage whereby one is deserving of, as opposed to "Titled" where someone is already honored. "Entitled", when used to refer to how something is titled, is just confusing usage. Using "the article was titled ... " is more concise.

  • Another usage for 'entitled' is in the sense of 'entitled to', or 'entitlements'; one might use entitled like this "I am entitled to my retirement benefits." which brings about another layer of confusion with using 'entitled.' It seems that a more accurate signal phrase would use a more current word (esp in MLA/APA citations).
    – mfg
    Aug 19, 2010 at 19:34

According to dictionary.com, 'title' as a verb means "to furnish with a title; designate by an appellation; entitle." I conclude both are acceptable. I think I tend to use 'titled' preferentially, probably because it's shorter.

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