al·​pha·​bet·​ize | \ ˈal-fə-bə-ˌtīz How to pronounce alphabetize (audio) \
alphabetized; alphabetizing

Definition of alphabetize

transitive verb

1 : to arrange alphabetically
2 : to furnish with an alphabet

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Other Words from alphabetize

alphabetizer noun

Examples of alphabetize in a Sentence

alphabetize the words on the list
Recent Examples on the Web On a particularly frustrating day, when everyone’s technology needed rebooting and her third-graders struggled to alphabetize a list of words, Ms. A could push and encourage her in-person students. Washington Post, 10 July 2021 Ahead of the election, workers can make sure the certificate envelope has all the necessary signatures, sort the ballots into 325 wards and alphabetize them. Alison Dirr, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 8 Oct. 2020 Another site, called Candor, keeps a crowdsourced, alphabetized tally of companies that shows who's hiring and who's got a freeze on—for now. Anne Fisher, Fortune, 23 Apr. 2020 All the books are shelved, alphabetized and categorized or put in milk crates for cleaning and wrapping. Max Bell, Los Angeles Times, 23 Apr. 2020 Dozens of file cabinets brimmed with decades-old newspaper clippings, photographs, and scorecards—in some cases alphabetized by players’ last names, in others by year. Jonathan Blitzer, The New Yorker, 12 Mar. 2020 Many of the other suggestions in the review are grammatical or related to the format of the measure, such as alphabetizing certain sections. Ryan Randazzo, azcentral, 9 Sep. 2019 That has to be more rewarding than alphabetizing one’s own shelves filled with other people’s books, one more time. Laura Vanderkam, WSJ, 12 Mar. 2018 Readers should expect an extensive cast and speedy transitions, and take stock of the character index, a helpful 10-page, alphabetized list of everyone in the novel. Weike Wang, New York Times, 2 Feb. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'alphabetize.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of alphabetize

1691, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for alphabetize

Time Traveler

The first known use of alphabetize was in 1691

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Dictionary Entries Near alphabetize



alphabet length

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Statistics for alphabetize

Last Updated

15 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Alphabetize.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 31 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for alphabetize



English Language Learners Definition of alphabetize

: to arrange (items) in alphabetical order


al·​pha·​bet·​ize | \ ˈal-fə-bə-ˌtīz How to pronounce alphabetize (audio) \
alphabetized; alphabetizing

Kids Definition of alphabetize

: to arrange in alphabetical order

More from Merriam-Webster on alphabetize

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for alphabetize

Nglish: Translation of alphabetize for Spanish Speakers


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