cap·​tion | \ ˈkap-shən How to pronounce caption (audio) \

Definition of caption

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the part of a legal document that shows where, when, and by what authority it was taken, found, or executed
2a : the heading especially of an article or document : title
b : the explanatory comment or designation accompanying a pictorial illustration read the caption for the names of the people in the picture
c : a movie or television show subtitle


captioned; captioning\ ˈkap-​sh(ə-​)niŋ How to pronounce caption (audio) \; captions

Definition of caption (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to furnish with a caption … confirm that photographs are correctly captioned and pages numbered sequentially.Publishers Weekly … the captions and pictures are frequently out of sync, and the live local weather and sports segments are usually not captioned.— Melvia M. and Ronald E. Nomeland

Other Words from caption


captionless \ ˈkap-​shən-​ləs How to pronounce caption (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for caption

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of caption in a Sentence

Noun The caption on the picture says “This year's contest winners.” for the school yearbook, funny captions were written for snapshots showing a typical day at school
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun In the caption, Teigen opened up about her experience undergoing IVF treatments. Chelsey Sanchez, Harper's BAZAAR, 4 Aug. 2022 Our caption contest for any of four Bob Staake cartoons. Pat Myers, Washington Post, 4 Aug. 2022 In another post, Cannon snuggled up to the newborn and joked about potential nicknames for the infant in the caption. Shafiq Najib, Peoplemag, 2 Aug. 2022 In the caption and in the video, Drew calls on help from two people who know a thing or two about renovations: Chip and Joanna Gaines. Chaise Sanders, Country Living, 29 July 2022 In another post, Cannon snuggles up to the newborn and jokes about potential nicknames for the infant in the caption. Angela Andaloro,, 29 July 2022 Gomez also shared photos of her dressed in a stunning sheer off-the-shoulder Versace dress at her party, thanking her glam team in the caption. Alyssa Bailey, ELLE, 27 July 2022 In a post to celebrate the occasion, The West Wing star, 58, gushed over Berkoff, 61, by sharing a picture of her on Instagram and penning a sweet note to her in the caption. Shafiq Najib,, 24 July 2022 Handler, 47, shared an Instagram video Monday night of the now ex-couple celebrating their first anniversary together early, while simultaneously breaking the news of their amicable split in the caption. Anthony Robledo, USA TODAY, 19 July 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb With its Instagram-like interface, through which people can upload and caption photos, follow and message one another and discover curated items, Depop turned into a go-to fashion marketplace among teenage and 20-something shoppers. New York Times, 25 July 2022 Williams taught me that music could caption action, lend subtext to silence, illuminate characters anew and supply entire universes with a spectrum of invisible colors. Michael Andor Brodeur, Washington Post, 17 June 2022 Find the perfect quote and write the words in a thoughtful card, or use the message to caption a photo of you and Dad on Instagram. Elizabeth Berry, Woman's Day, 9 June 2022 TikTokers can directly respond to comments with new videos, curate and follow content via hashtags and sounds, stitch videos together with other content, caption them for context, and use a green screen effect – just like a real news studio. Jenna Drenten, The Conversation, 27 Jan. 2022 Even if users want to caption their videos, TikTok’s app doesn’t have a way to automatically recognize voice patterns and automate text to use. Washington Post, 15 Mar. 2021 About a third of users have facial recognition features turned on in their Facebook settings, which is used to alert them of new photos, to root out photos stolen by fake accounts, and to help caption photos for blind users. Caroline Delbert, Popular Mechanics, 4 Nov. 2021 Though West did not caption the series of photos, many in the comments section of the post sent along well wishes to the musician's little guy. Nicholas Rice,, 25 Sep. 2021 Assign a team to caption images so that assistive technologies can convey image descriptions as visitors navigate the client’s website. Ran Ronen, Forbes, 20 Sep. 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of caption


circa 1670, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1848, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for caption

Noun and Verb

probably short for certificate of caption (taking, seizure)

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Time Traveler for caption

Time Traveler

The first known use of caption was circa 1670

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Dictionary Entries Near caption



caption code

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Statistics for caption

Last Updated

9 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Caption.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 15 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for caption


cap·​tion | \ ˈkap-shən How to pronounce caption (audio) \

Kids Definition of caption

: a comment or title that goes with a picture


cap·​tion | \ ˈkap-shən How to pronounce caption (audio) \

Legal Definition of caption

: the part of a legal document that states the court, the names of the parties, the docket number, the title of the document, and sometimes the name of the judge

History and Etymology for caption

Medieval Latin captio act of taking, from Latin capere to take

More from Merriam-Webster on caption

Nglish: Translation of caption for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of caption for Arabic Speakers


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