\ˈblaŋk \

Definition of blank 

(Entry 1 of 3)

1 archaic : colorless

2a : appearing or causing to appear dazed, confounded, or nonplussed stared in blank dismay

b : expressionless a blank stare

3a : devoid of covering or content a blank space : such as

(1) : free from writing or marks a blank sheet of paper

(2) : without any recorded sound or information a blank drive/DVD/disk

b : having spaces to be filled in a blank application form — see also blank check

c : lacking interest, variety, or change blank hours

4 : absolute, unqualified a blank refusal

5 : unfinished especially : having a plain or unbroken surface where an opening is usual a blank key a blank arch



Definition of blank (Entry 2 of 3)

1 obsolete : the bull's-eye of a target

2a : an empty space (as on a paper)

b : a paper with spaces for the entry of data an order blank

3a : a piece of material prepared to be made into something (such as a key) by a further operation

b : a cartridge loaded with propellant and a seal but no projectile

4a : an empty or featureless place or space my mind was a blank

b : a vacant or uneventful period a long blank in history

5 : a dash substituting for an omitted word


blanked; blanking; blanks

Definition of blank (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

1a : obscure, obliterate blank out a line

b : to stop access to : seal blank off a tunnel

2 : to keep (an opponent) from scoring were blanked for eight innings

3 British slang : to treat (a friend or acquaintance) in a hostile or unfriendly way : to ignore or refuse to talk to (someone) And unpopular Gardiner has found himself isolated after the show's cast and crew blanked him.— Mark Jefferies

intransitive verb

1 : fade usually used with out the music blanked out

2 : to become confused or abstracted often used with out his mind blanked out momentarily

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Other Words from blank


blankly adverb
blankness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for blank

Synonyms: Adjective

catatonic, deadpan, empty, expressionless, impassive, inexpressive, numb, stolid, vacant

Synonyms: Noun

black hole, blankness, emptiness, vacancy, vacuity, void

Antonyms: Adjective

demonstrative, expressive

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Choose the Right Synonym for blank


empty, vacant, blank, void, vacuous mean lacking contents which could or should be present. empty suggests a complete absence of contents. an empty bucket vacant suggests an absence of appropriate contents or occupants. a vacant apartment blank stresses the absence of any significant, relieving, or intelligible features on a surface. a blank wall void suggests absolute emptiness as far as the mind or senses can determine. a statement void of meaning vacuous suggests the emptiness of a vacuum and especially the lack of intelligence or significance. a vacuous facial expression

Examples of blank in a Sentence


a blank sheet of paper a book with blank pages


The form has a blank for your signature. The actors are shooting blanks.


The goalie blanked the Falcons for two periods in the hockey game.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

The room’s blank canvas and unique architecture allowed for Keltie and Kylee to have full autonomy in the redesign. Lucia Tonelli, ELLE Decor, "This is How TV Personality Keltie Knight Crafted the Bedroom of Her Dreams," 25 Oct. 2018 The San Francisco’s 8-inch shells would be useless against a Japanese battleship’s thick armor, except at point-blank range. Gary Kamiya, San Francisco Chronicle, "In World War II, San Francisco’s namesake ship was a Navy hero," 25 May 2018 In brutal, point-blank fighting with bayonets, lobbed grenades and bare fists, U.S. forces beat back the raid short of the artillery guns on Engineer Hill. Alex Horton, Washington Post, "Thousands of Japanese fought in a bloody World War II battle for the Aleutians. Only 28 survived.," 24 May 2018 Sterling couldn't beat Penedo from point-blank range but the rebound fell to Stones, who doubled his tally with a header into the roof of the net., "England 6-1 Panama: Three Lions Roar With Biggest Ever World Cup Win to Book Last 16 Spot," 24 June 2018 Schrade believes Sirhan couldn’t have killed his friend because an autopsy report showed RFK was shot from near point-blank range from behind and eyewitnesses saw Sirhan standing in front of Kennedy. Michael Levenson,, "RFK’s children divided over calls for a fresh investigation of his assassination," 31 May 2018 But aligning himself with a donor videotaped shooting two pet huskies multiple times at point-blank range could be a bridge too far for firearm enthusiasts. Adam C. Smith, miamiherald, "Update: Adam Putnam cancels campaign fundraiser with supporter who shot dogs | Miami Herald," 24 May 2018 But Corporal Katia da Silva Sastre, 42, an off-duty police officer and parent, emerged from the group and shot the man at point-blank range. Sean Rossman, USA TODAY, "Mom shoots, kills attacker at Brazil school during Mother's Day event," 15 May 2018 VanVleet missed a wide-open 3 with seven seconds left, and then DeRozan, CJ Miles, and Valanciunas all missed from point-blank range inside of two seconds. Joe Vardon,, "Cavaliers have NBA's eyes wide open after 113-112 OT win over Raptors in Game 1," 2 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Schmidt said decisions to fire blanks during drills would be made on a school-by-school basis. Tegan Hanlon, Anchorage Daily News, "Yes to keyless locks, no to armed teachers: How an Anchorage School District panel suggests keeping students safe," 6 Apr. 2018 The problem features a diagram with five numbers and three blanks. Caroline Alkire, Good Housekeeping, "This First-Grade Math Problem Has Everyone Stumped," 17 May 2017 Now, Trump has filled in the blank with the name of Brett M. Kavanaugh. Sheryl Gay Stolberg And Jonathan Martin,, "Conservative and liberal groups gird for battle over Kavanaugh," 11 July 2018 Now, President Trump has filled in the blank with the name of Brett M. Kavanaugh. Jonathan Martin, New York Times, "Conservative and Liberal Groups Gird for Battle Over Kavanaugh," 10 July 2018 The fate of the universe rests entirely on control of (fill in the blank). Gary Thompson,, "What are the infinity stones that drive the plot of 'Avengers: Infinity War'?," 25 Apr. 2018 During the past 16 races, Wallace, Dillon and the rest of the NASCAR’s young guns have fired blanks. Edgar Thompson,, "NASCAR's rising stars under pressure to produce wins," 6 July 2018 Others may not have voted for him but did not vote for Hillary Clinton, opting to write in third-party candidates or leave that part of the ballot blank. NBC News, "Betting the farm: Why the heartland still believes in Trump despite plunging prices," 6 July 2018 But then, unexpectedly, several of the guards refused point-blank to kill the girls. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "Inside the Romanov Family's Final Days," 1 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Track & Field News projects the Ducks to get blanked in the 100 and score a total of 11 points in the 200 and 400 (sixth for Williams in the 200, third for Dunmore and seventh for Waller in the 400)., "Women take over at Hayward, and Ducks look for a better day; Oregon track & Field rundown," 7 June 2018 The Reds are coming off back-to-back 2-0 losses in Milwaukee, the first time they were blanked in consecutive games since 2015. Joe Kay,, "Reds fire manager Bryan Price after 3-15 start," 19 Apr. 2018 Noah Putney hit a home run and a double as Glassboro blanked Cumberland, 5-0, on the road in Tri-County Conference action. Lauren Green,, "Monday's South Jersey roundup: Jon Storz's walk-off hit lifts Egg Harbor over Ocean City," 8 May 2018 The first was your conventional one man standing against the tide, with Oakland’s Sean Manaea blanking the Red Sox on April 21. Staff,, "Nine Innings: Gleyber Torres Jolts Yankees, Jacob deGrom Sparks Never-Ending DH Debate and More," 7 May 2018 Peralta again was outstanding in blanking the Pirates for six innings. Tom Haudricourt, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Freddy Peralta wants to stay in the majors; Jesus Aguilar wants to stay in the lineup," 19 June 2018 The latest came when Kate Ostaszewski and Co. blanked Lansdale Catholic, 1-0, in a low-scoring tussle Friday afternoon at La Salle University. Rick O'brien,, "Archbishop Ryan nips Lansdale Catholic to earn Catholic League softball title," 25 May 2018 Friendswood's Brandon Deskins pitched a one-hitter and struck out 14 as the Mustangs blanked Clear Brook, 5-0. Houston Chronicle, "24-6A baseball roundup: Creek, Falls tied for first," 30 Mar. 2018 They've been blanked eight times this season — seven at home — and have gone 14 straight series without winning one. Jeffrey Metallo,, "Nathan Eovaldi flirts with perfection as Rays blast Mets 9-0," 8 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'blank.' 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 blank


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


circa 1570, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1764, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for blank


Middle English, from Anglo-French blanc colorless, white, of Germanic origin; akin to Old High German blanch white; probably akin to Latin flagrare to burn — more at black

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Statistics for blank

Last Updated

12 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for blank

The first known use of blank was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for blank



English Language Learners Definition of blank

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: without any writing, marks, or pictures

: having empty spaces to be filled in with information : not yet written in or filled out

: without any recorded sound or information



English Language Learners Definition of blank (Entry 2 of 3)

: an empty space on a document where you put information

: a period of time that you cannot remember anything about

: a gun cartridge that is filled with powder but that does not contain a bullet



English Language Learners Definition of blank (Entry 3 of 3)

: to keep (the opposing team) from scoring

: to behave in an unfriendly way toward (someone you have been friendly with in the past) : to ignore or refuse to talk to (someone)


\ˈblaŋk \

Kids Definition of blank

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : not having any writing or marks a blank page

2 : having empty spaces to be filled in a blank order form

3 : not showing emotion or understanding a blank look



Kids Definition of blank (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an empty space in a line of writing or printing

2 : a paper with empty spaces to be filled in “Do you have your entry blank for the dog show?”— Beverly Cleary, Henry Huggins

3 : a cartridge loaded with powder but no bullet

4 : events or a time that cannot be remembered Everything after the accident is a blank.

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Comments on blank

What made you want to look up blank? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


playful or foolish behavior

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