can·​cel·​la·​tion | \ ˌkan(t)-sə-ˈlā-shən How to pronounce cancellation (audio) \
variants: or less commonly cancelation

Definition of cancellation

1 : the act or an instance of canceling The cancellation of the game was due to bad weather.
2 : something (such as a hotel room or a ticket) made available by the canceling of an arrangement was lucky to get a cancellation for the trip to Chicago
3 : a mark made to cancel something (such as a postage stamp)

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Examples of cancellation in a Sentence

The storm caused delays and flight cancellations. Notice of cancellation should be given 30 days in advance. There is a fee for cancellation. Cancellations increased when rates doubled.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Roseanne Barr's Racist Tweets Her disparaging comments against Valerie Jarrett led to the cancellation of the Roseanne reboot. Christopher Rosa, Glamour, "24 Social Media Moments That Literally Made 2018," 26 Dec. 2018 Some service at Penn Station resumed shortly before 8 p.m., but there were still some cancellations and delays. Paul Berger, WSJ, "NJ Transit Train Derails, Stalling Many at Penn Station," 4 Oct. 2018 Shadowhunters star Dominic Sherwood has now responded to what many believe was a premature cancellation of his latest Freeform show. Brianna Wiest, Teen Vogue, ""Shadowhunters" Star Dominic Sherwood Has "Hope" for the Series Thanks to Fan Support," 20 Sep. 2018 Roseanne Barr is continuing to apologize for the racist tweet that led to the cancellation of her hit sitcom. Jodi Guglielmi,, "Roseanne Barr Says She's Not Against Valerie Jarrett 'Personally' in Wake of Controversial Tweet," 9 July 2018 Since the end of April, there have been more cancellations, including two trips that had to be canceled Wednesday when the agency’s fast ferry needed repairs to its radar system. Matt Rocheleau,, "In latest mishap, seawater rains down inside a Martha’s Vineyard car ferry," 21 June 2018 For Barr, the ultimate injustice may not have been the cancellation of her show. James Sullivan, San Francisco Chronicle, "Didya hear the one about the racist tweet from Roseanne? When a ‘joke’ isn’t," 31 May 2018 There have been some sad television cancellations recently, including Kevin Can Wait, The Chew and The Great American Baking Show. Temi Adebowale, Country Living, "CBS Medical Drama 'Code Black' Was Just Canceled," 24 May 2018 There were 120 flight cancellations and more than 300 delays at the Minneapolis airport as of late afternoon, according to Metropolitan Airports Commission spokesman Patrick Hogan. CBS News, "Winter storm systems target tens of millions across U.S.," 6 Mar. 2018

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

1535, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for cancellation

see cancel entry 1

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Learn More about cancellation

Statistics for cancellation

Last Updated

20 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for cancellation

The first known use of cancellation was in 1535

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More Definitions for cancellation



Financial Definition of cancellation

What It Is

In the finance world, a cancellation is a notice informing a broker that a trade was made incorrectly. In the insurance world, a cancellation occurs when a policyholder stops paying the premium on an insurance policy and/or the insurance policy is no longer effective.

How It Works

Let's say Jane Smith calls her broker, John Doe, and tells him to buy 1,000 shares of Company XYZ. John puts the trade in, but gets a cancellation telling him that the floor accidentally bought 1,000 shares of Company X instead. John quickly puts in a new trade for Jane and then calls and tells her what happened. Because the price of Company XYZ rose about $0.25 before Jane could actually get her shares, John offers to make her whole on the trade.

In another example, let's say Peter Walker has a term life insurance policy that costs him $100 a month. He loses his job and can't afford to pay the premium anymore. In turn, the insurance company cancels the policy and Peter no longer has life insurance.

Why It Matters

Computerized trading has vastly improved the accuracy of trading in developed markets, but occasionally somebody types the wrong ticker symbol or transposes a number, causing a cancellation. Cancellations can be a sneaky way of covering up wrongdoing in an account, so they involve a considerable amount of paperwork and verification.

In insurance, cancellations may relieve a consumer of monthly premium payments, but they can also expose the consumer to considerable risk. In Peter's case, a lack of life insurance might mean that if he dies now, his children may have to sell his assets just to pay for his funeral and estate taxes if they are no longer the beneficiaries of his life insurance policy.

Source: Investing Answers



English Language Learners Definition of cancellation

: a decision to stop doing or planning to do something : the act of canceling something (such as a game, performance, etc.)
: the act of causing something to end or no longer produce a certain effect : a decision to stop something from being effective or valid


can·​cel·​la·​tion | \ ˌkan-sə-ˈlā-shən How to pronounce cancellation (audio) \

Kids Definition of cancellation

1 : an act of causing something to end or no longer be in effect cancellation of a game
2 : a mark that makes something impossible to use again the cancellation on a postage stamp

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variants: also cancelation

Legal Definition of cancellation

1 : the act or an instance of cancelling
2 : a mark made to cancel something (as a check)

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Comments on cancellation

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


using a distributed computer network

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