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 censoring (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 censorial (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

BBC News pointed out that Samoan censors previously banned Harvey Milk biopic Milk in 2009 for LGBTQ content and The Da Vinci Code, the adaptation of the Dan Brown book, in 2006 over a conflict with the country’s religious beliefs. Nick Romano, EW.com, "Rocketman banned in Samoa over depictions of homosexuality," 11 June 2019 From the government’s perspective, these rappers were quickly becoming major pop celebrities, and celebrities at that level are supposed to self-censor and be good role models, upholding Chinese/Communist values. Rob Schwartz, Billboard, "Chinese Music Industry Reacts to Government's Hip-Hop Ban," 5 Feb. 2018 Or should a white ASL interpreter censor herself, even if the rapper shouts the word four times in a row? Lynn Q. Yu, Los Angeles Magazine, "These Sign Language Interpreters Are Working Hard to Make Live Music More Accessible to All," 9 Apr. 2018 The publication of the Encyclopédie involved a long scuffle between editors, printers, the Jesuits, the state, the official censor, King Louis XV’s mistress and the contributors, who were often at variance among themselves. Dan Hofstadter, WSJ, "‘Diderot’ Review: Wherever His Mind Led Him," 15 Feb. 2019 The Constantly Bleeped-Out Presenters in 2016 The 2016 Golden Globes was a censor’s nightmare. Vogue, "The Most Shocking Golden Globe Moments of All Time," 3 Jan. 2019 The controversy follows accusations that Twitter censors conservatives on its platform. Nicole Darrah, Fox News, "Twitter wouldn't allow promotion of 'illegal aliens' tweet, immigration group claims," 12 Sep. 2018 According to The Independent, Reza believes the new burqa ban violates the western world’s freedom of religion and expression and unjustly censors women’s wardrobe choice. Amira Rasool, Teen Vogue, "A Danish Designer Protested Denmark’s Burqa Ban During Copenhagen Fashion Week," 9 Aug. 2018 In that and other cases, university administrators and online censors have tried to quell discussion of the incidents, and the same appears to have happened at Sun Yat-sen University. Chris Buckley, New York Times, "Chinese Professor Accused of Sexual Harassment Is Barred From Teaching," 12 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The events of June 4 have been wiped from the history books in China and any discussion of the crackdown is strictly censored and controlled. James Griffiths, CNN, "World marks 30 years since Tiananmen massacre as China censors all mention," 4 June 2019 Comments like this Twitter thread show the letter N being censored on Weibo (a microblogging website that is one of the most popular social media platforms in China). Victor H. Mair, Newsweek, "China's War on Words Show Xi Jinping Is A Dictator For Life," 28 Feb. 2018 The media is heavily monitored and censored in China, though social media remains less restricted. WSJ, "JD.com Founder Faces Backlash at Home: ‘Behind the Law is Morality’," 22 Dec. 2018 The Pentagon is blocking the release of data showing how much of Afghanistan’s territory lies outside government control, censoring a key metric used to gauge progress in the 16-year war, a watchdog agency said Tuesday. Shashank Bengali, latimes.com, "Auditor says Pentagon is censoring key data on the war in Afghanistan," 30 Jan. 2018 This inevitably puts the rights of multibillion dollar companies to control every fleeting use of their intellectual property far above an average user's right to not be censored by an algorithm that's looking out for Disney's bottom line. Eric Limer, Popular Mechanics, "EU Passes New Copyright Rules That Could Have a Disastrous Effect," 26 Mar. 2019 Cruz says Vatican officials assured him his words would not be censored. Rosa Flores, CNN, "3 church sex abuse survivors to meet with Pope," 13 Apr. 2018 But outspoken critics say the contentious measure could have major implications for US tech companies and could censor anyone who posts on the internet. Raf Casert, The Seattle Times, "EU parliament backs copyright bill targeting US tech giants," 27 Mar. 2019 Thanks to the blockchain, this year users managed to preserve censored information in ways that thwarted the government’s fast-growing censorship efforts. Shannon Liao, The Verge, "2018 was the year Chinese internet users evaded censorship — briefly," 20 Dec. 2018

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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Dictionary Entries near censor

censitaire

censive

censo

censor

censorable

censorate

censored

Statistics for censor

Last Updated

16 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for censor

The first known use of censor was in 1526

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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 censorial (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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More from Merriam-Webster on censor

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with censor

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for censor

Spanish Central: Translation of censor

Nglish: Translation of censor for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of censor for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about censor

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