capture

noun
cap·​ture | \ ˈkap-chər How to pronounce capture (audio) , -shər\

Definition of capture

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an act or instance of capturing: such as
a : an act of catching, winning, or gaining control by force, stratagem, or guile the capture of the city by enemy forces
b : a move in a board game (such as chess or checkers) that gains an opponent's piece
c : the absorption by an atom, nucleus, or particle of a subatomic particle that often results in subsequent emission of radiation or in fission
d : the act of recording in a permanent file data capture motion capture
2 : one that has been taken (such as a prize ship)

capture

verb
captured; capturing\ ˈkap-​chə-​riŋ How to pronounce capturing (audio) , ˈkap-​shriŋ \

Definition of capture (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to take captive also : to gain control of especially by force capture a city
b : to gain or win especially through effort captured 60 percent of the vote
2a : to emphasize, represent, or preserve (something, such as a scene, mood, or quality) in a more or less permanent form … at any such moment as a photograph might capture— C. E. Montague
b : to record in a permanent file (as in a computer) The system is used to capture data relating to the buying habits of young people.
3 : to captivate and hold the interest of The performer captured our attention.
4 : to take according to the rules of a game A knight captured his pawn.
5 : to bring about the capture of (a subatomic particle)
6 astronomy : to draw into the gravitational influence of a larger body Asteroids were thought to be too small to capture a moon, but the moon might be a fragment that broke off.— Kenneth Chang

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Other Words from capture

Verb

capturable \ ˈkap-​chə-​rə-​bəl How to pronounce capturable (audio) , -​shrə-​bəl \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for capture

Synonyms: Noun

captive, internee, prisoner

Synonyms: Verb

acquire, attain, bag, bring in, carry, come by, draw, earn, gain, garner, get, knock down, land, make, obtain, procure, pull down, realize, reap, secure, win

Antonyms: Noun

captor

Antonyms: Verb

forfeit, lose

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Choose the Right Synonym for capture

Verb

catch, capture, trap, snare, entrap, ensnare, bag mean to come to possess or control by or as if by seizing. catch implies the seizing of something in motion or in flight or in hiding. caught the dog as it ran by capture suggests taking by overcoming resistance or difficulty. capture an enemy stronghold trap, snare, entrap, ensnare imply seizing by some device that holds the one caught at the mercy of the captor. trap and snare apply more commonly to physical seizing. trap animals snared butterflies with a net entrap and ensnare more often are figurative. entrapped the witness with a trick question a sting operation that ensnared burglars bag implies shooting down a fleeing or distant prey. bagged a brace of pheasants

Examples of capture in a Sentence

Noun

the capture of the city by enemy forces a Spanish treasure ship was the most valuable capture ever taken by that privateer

Verb

They were captured by enemy soldiers. using traps to capture mice The city was captured by the Romans. She captured 60 percent of the vote in the last election. The company plans on capturing a larger segment of the market. The show has captured the attention of teenagers.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Desperate to avoid capture, Mr. Park sprinted across a Chinese expressway, dodging speeding trucks. Eun-young Jeong, WSJ, "A Perilous Journey to Escape Kim Jong Un’s North Korea," 20 Dec. 2018 As the war raged on throughout the South, enslaved Black women fought to secure their own freedom, often fleeing plantations under threat of capture. Jenn M. Jackson, Teen Vogue, "Black Women's Labor in America Has Always Been Exploited," 7 Aug. 2018 In late 2017, a parliamentary committee began calling witnesses as part of its own investigation of state capture. New York Times, "How McKinsey Lost Its Way in South Africa," 26 June 2018 Grief so heavy Almost all American slave narratives were composed by people born in the country, and thus contain no first-hand recollections of capture and transportation. The Economist, "The story of one of the last slaves imported to America," 10 May 2018 Alita, who is played via motion-capture technology by Rosa Salazar, doesn’t have much of a body at the outset. Joe Morgenstern, WSJ, "‘Alita: Battle Angel’ Review: Big Eyes, Throbbing Heart, Muddled Mind," 14 Feb. 2019 The local court last week agreed to hear the activists’ lawsuit seeking to penalize officials who allowed the capture and demanding the animals’ release. Nataliya Vasilyeva, The Seattle Times, "Russian activists raise alarm about captured whales," 5 Feb. 2019 But the mission instead leads to their capture by rabbits from a terrifying authoritarian rabbit commune led by a one-eyed rabbit voiced by Ben Kingsley. Aja Romano, Vox, "Netflix’s new Watership Down proves the beloved children’s classic was a horror story all along," 30 Dec. 2018 Russia claims the Ukrainian ships acted aggressively, prompting their capture by ships of the Federal Border Guard, including the patrol boats Sobol, Mangust, and Suzdalets, and the armed tug Don. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "Russia Seizes Three Ukrainian Warships in Border Incident," 26 Nov. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

As a result, python capturing contests are often held in the Everglades, doubling as a sort of cultural pastime and conservation effort. Sam Blum, Popular Mechanics, "Researchers Capture the Biggest Snake Ever Found in the Florida Everglades," 8 Apr. 2019 The video showed North singing along to the music, which captured her father's attention. Nicole Saunders, Harper's BAZAAR, "North West Snatched the Mic and Performed with Kanye West at His Sunday Service," 8 Apr. 2019 News and Politics For years, Joe Biden’s handsiness has been documented in photographs, captured on video, criticized and skewered by comedians. Katie Halper, Teen Vogue, "Lucy Flores: Biden's Unwanted Touching Should be Part of #MeToo Conversations," 6 Apr. 2019 The only thing better than having fun in the sun is capturing those moments on camera—and then posting the photos to social media. Kelly O'sullivan, Country Living, "50+ Summer Captions for Every Beach Photo You Post on Instagram," 5 Apr. 2019 Though Selena never confirmed she and Samuel were actually dating, romance rumors were sparked after paparazzi captured photos of them holding hands on more than one occasion. Jasmine Gomez, Seventeen, "Everything You Need To Know About Selena Gomez's Love Life," 4 Apr. 2019 But the lack of a national guaranteed paid leave standard has captured politicians’ attention. Bryce Covert, Glamour, "America Could at Last Pass Paid Leave. But What Good Is a Plan That Excludes Millions of Women?," 2 Apr. 2019 Look, somebody, Beto to me is placeholder for now of the total outsider that could come in and capture the imagination. Eric Johnson, Recode, "Full Q&A: NBC journalists Chuck Todd, Andrea Mitchell and Hallie Jackson on Recode Decode," 5 Dec. 2018 In another photo captured from the set, Laura Dern is seen wearing a gold pleated dress paired with tinted sunglasses and a slouchy metallic hat. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "New Photos from the Set of Big Little Lies Season Two Tease Another Costume Party," 6 Mar. 2019

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

Noun

circa 1542, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1574, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for capture

Noun

Middle French, from Latin captura, from captus — see captive entry 1

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More Definitions for capture

capture

noun

English Language Learners Definition of capture

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the act of taking and holding someone as a prisoner or of being taken as a prisoner
: the act of getting control of something
: the act of putting information in a form that a computer can use or read

capture

verb

English Language Learners Definition of capture (Entry 2 of 2)

: to take and hold (someone) as a prisoner especially by using force
: to catch (an animal)
: to get control of (a place) especially by using force

capture

verb
cap·​ture | \ ˈkap-chər How to pronounce capture (audio) \
captured; capturing

Kids Definition of capture

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to take and hold especially by force The eagle captured its prey.
2 : to win or get through effort The candidate captured more than half the vote.
3 : to get and hold The seaweed strewn about … had captured her attention.— Kevin Henkes, Olive's Ocean
4 : to put into a lasting form She captured the scene in a photo.

capture

noun

Kids Definition of capture (Entry 2 of 2)

: the act of taking and holding especially by force

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More from Merriam-Webster on capture

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for capture

Spanish Central: Translation of capture

Nglish: Translation of capture for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of capture for Arabic Speakers

Comments on capture

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