censor

noun
cen·​sor | \ ˈsen(t)-sər How to pronounce censor (audio) \

Definition of censor

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a person who supervises conduct and morals: such as
a : an official who examines materials (such as publications or films) for objectionable matter Government censors deleted all references to the protest.
b : an official (as in time of war) who reads communications (such as letters) and deletes material considered sensitive or harmful
2 : one of two magistrates of early Rome acting as census takers, assessors, and inspectors of morals and conduct Cato the Censor accused Africanus and his senior officers of running an army riddled with moral laxity— Colleen McCullough
3 : a hypothetical psychic agency that represses unacceptable notions before they reach consciousness

censor

verb
censored; censoring\ ˈsen(t)-​sə-​riŋ How to pronounce censor (audio) , ˈsen(t)s-​riŋ \

Definition of censor (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to examine in order to suppress (see suppress sense 2) or delete anything considered objectionable censor the news also : to suppress or delete as objectionable censor out indecent passages

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Other Words from censor

Noun

censorial \ sen-​ˈsȯr-​ē-​əl How to pronounce censor (audio) \ adjective

Examples of censor in a Sentence

Noun Government censors deleted all references to the protest. Verb The station censored her speech before broadcasting it. His report was heavily censored.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun There is another danger: The increasing pressure on ordinary, hardworking Americans and their children to self-censor honestly held beliefs. Madeleine Kearns, National Review, "NR Never Transitions from the Truth," 24 Mar. 2021 Amazon’s decisions to censor books have enormous consequences for authors and readers, and Amazon knows it. Ryan T. Anderson, WSJ, "Amazon Won’t Let You Read My Book," 16 Mar. 2021 Trump and his allies have railed against Big Tech censorship, saying platforms such as Twitter and Facebook censor conservative voices and views. Washington Examiner, "'Don’t back down': Tulsi Gabbard tells Trump he has her full support in terminating Section 230," 3 Dec. 2020 An institution beholden only to its shareholders should not be the world's de facto publisher, censor, and private intelligence service. Matthew Walther, TheWeek, "The worst argument against breaking up Facebook," 14 Dec. 2020 These attacks and others like them have led at least some scientists to self-censor, for fear their contrarian positions would leave them open to reputational damage that could potentially threaten their careers. Jeanne Lenzer, Scientific American, "The COVID Science Wars," 30 Nov. 2020 After the story broke, Facebook and Twitter moved to censor links to the report. Emma Colton, Washington Examiner, "'lllegal election interference': Conservatives livid with Facebook and Twitter for censoring New York Post story on Biden family business dealings," 15 Oct. 2020 China’s government employs to block foreign websites and censor sensitive content. Grady Mcgregor, Fortune, "A Chinese app managed to scale China’s Great Firewall, then got taken down," 12 Oct. 2020 In either scenario, ByteDance would maintain control of the company's most valuable software — a sticking point for U.S. officials who remain concerned about China's ability to use the app to access American users' data and censor content. NBC News, "TikTok asks judge to block Trump ban," 23 Sep. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The leading messaging service in China relies on automatic filters to censor conversations. Will Cathcart, Wired, "Encryption Has Never Been More Essential—or Threatened," 5 Apr. 2021 The solution, the paper concluded, is not for the media to censor such accounts but to precede them with real-world data on the minimal risks and the considerable benefits of vaccines. Jeffrey Kluger, Time, "Here's What Will Actually Convince People to Get Vaccinated," 2 Apr. 2021 Heresy only exists in relation to doctrine: who is Nike to censor one but not the other? Nick Romano, EW.com, "Nike blocks sales of Lil Nas X's 'Satan Shoes' with temporary restraining order," 1 Apr. 2021 In China, such platforms have already been compromised by the government, which forbids the use of foreign services and requires domestic companies to censor political content. Quartz Staff, Quartz, "With a Google spreadsheet, a web sleuth tracks the comments that get people jailed in China," 31 Mar. 2021 The feature change isn’t meant to censor a metric that can be quite helpful. Chris Smith, BGR, "YouTube is testing a big user interface change – here’s what it looks like," 30 Mar. 2021 This latest crackdown marks a new, more hostile stage of social media restriction in Vladimir Putin's Russia, in which Moscow is looking to cement control over information and censor foreign social media. Daria Solovieva, Fortune, "Why Russia is cracking down on U.S. social media," 17 Mar. 2021 Their conversations often came back to Trump and followed a familiar pattern: One of the siblings would fact-check something Claire said or posted on Facebook, and Claire would accuse them of trying to censor her. Washington Post, "They’re worried their mom is becoming a conspiracy theorist. She thinks they’re the ones living in a fantasy world.," 12 Mar. 2021 Try not to self-censor any appeals out of fear that others will not be interested or supportive. Liz Kislik, Forbes, "How To Make Sure Disruptions Won’t Stall Your Progress," 11 Mar. 2021

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

Noun

1526, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1882, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for censor

Noun

borrowed from Latin cēnsor "Roman magistrate tasked with registering citizens, removing persons from the register whose conduct was found wanting, and leasing public contracts," from cēnsēre "to give as an opinion, assess, appraise, perform the duties of a censor" (going back to an Indo-European verbal base *ḱems- "announce, evaluate publicly," whence Sanskrit śaṁati "declares solemnly, praises," Avestan sənghaitī "announces, names") + -tor, agent suffix

Verb

derivative of censor entry 1

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Statistics for censor

Last Updated

7 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Censor.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/censor. Accessed 14 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for censor

censor

noun

English Language Learners Definition of censor

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a person who examines books, movies, letters, etc., and removes things that are considered to be offensive, immoral, harmful to society, etc.

censor

verb

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

: to examine books, movies, letters, etc., in order to remove things that are considered to be offensive, immoral, harmful to society, etc.

censor

noun
cen·​sor | \ ˈsen-sər How to pronounce censor (audio) \

Kids Definition of censor

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: an official who checks writings or movies to take out things considered offensive or immoral

censor

verb
censored; censoring

Kids Definition of censor (Entry 2 of 2)

: to examine (as a book) to take out things considered offensive or immoral

censor

noun
cen·​sor | \ ˈsen(t)-sər How to pronounce censor (audio) \

Medical Definition of censor

: a hypothetical psychic agency that represses unacceptable notions before they reach consciousness

Other Words from censor

censorial \ sen-​ˈsōr-​ē-​əl, -​ˈsȯr-​ How to pronounce censor (audio) \ adjective

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cen·​sor

Legal Definition of censor

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to examine (as a publication or film) in order to suppress or delete any contents considered objectionable

censor

noun

Legal Definition of censor (Entry 2 of 2)

: one that censors

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Comments on censor

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