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adjective trun·cate \ˈtrəŋ-ˌkāt, ˈtrən-\

Definition of truncate

  1. :  having the end square or even <truncate leaves>

Origin and Etymology of truncate

Latin truncatus, past participle of truncare to shorten, from truncus trunk

First Known Use: 1716



transitive verb trun·cate

Simple Definition of truncate

  • : to make (something) shorter

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of truncate



  1. 1 :  to shorten by or as if by cutting off

  2. 2 :  to replace (an edge or corner of a crystal) by a plane


play \trəŋ-ˈkā-shən, trən-\ noun

Examples of truncate in a sentence

  1. <a truncated version of the 11 o'clock newscast followed the awards show, which ran over its time slot—as it always does>

Did You Know?

The earliest use of "truncate" in English was as an adjective describing something (such as a leaf or feather) with the end squared off as if it had been cut. It makes sense, then, that the verb which was coined very shortly thereafter referred to shortening things as though by cutting. "Truncate" descends from the Latin verb truncare ("to shorten"), which in turn can be traced back to the Latin word for "trunk," which was "truncus." Incidentally, if you've guessed that "truncus" is also the ancestor of the English word trunk, you are correct. "Truncus" also gave us "truncheon" (a police officer's billy club) and the obscure word obtruncate ("to cut the head or top from").

Circa 1727

First Known Use of truncate

circa 1727

Rhymes with truncate

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Seen and Heard

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to take off or remove

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