circuit

noun, often attributive
cir·​cuit | \ ˈsər-kət How to pronounce circuit (audio) \

Definition of circuit

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a usually circular line encompassing an area a swamp about 10 miles in circuit
b : the space enclosed within such a line the circuit of the duke's land
2a : a course around a periphery the periodic circuit of the Earth around the Sun
b : a circuitous or indirect route The damaged bridge forced him to take a long circuit to his destination.
3a : a regular tour (as by a traveling judge or preacher) around an assigned district or territory The preacher ministered to each congregation in his circuit.
b : the route traveled His circuit took him to many towns in the county.
c : a group of church congregations ministered to by one pastor
4a : the complete path of an electric current including usually the source of electric energy
b : an assemblage of electronic elements : hookup
c : a two-way communication path between points (as in a computer)
d : a neuronal pathway of the brain along which electrical and chemical signals travel
5a : an association of similar groups : league
b : a number or series of public outlets (such as theaters, radio shows, or arenas) offering the same kind of presentation He loved competing on the rodeo circuit. She rose through the theater circuit to become a big-time entertainer.
c : a number of similar social gatherings the cocktail circuit

circuit

verb
circuited; circuiting; circuits

Definition of circuit (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to make a circuit about a route that circuits the Back Bay section of the city

intransitive verb

: to make a circuit Potential buyers circuited around the boatyard.

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Other Words from circuit

Noun

circuital \ ˈsər-​kə-​tᵊl How to pronounce circuital (audio) \ adjective

Examples of circuit in a Sentence

Noun

It takes a year for the Earth to make one circuit around the sun.

Verb

after circuiting the exterior of the church, the procession headed inside

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh has written almost 300 opinions on a range of issues over his 12 years serving on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia circuit. Jessica Spitz /, NBC News, "How Kavanaugh ruled on gun control, health care, and other hot-button issues," 10 July 2018 Elias is a race engineer for the Mercedes-AMG Petronas team, the New York Yankees of the Formula One circuit. Jacob Sweet, miamiherald, "His dream was to race cars. Now this Miami kid is building them for one of best F1 teams," 10 July 2018 Among them: Brett Kavanaugh, a 53-year-old judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia circuit, has been pegged by analysts as a frontrunner. Celeste Katz, Glamour, "Trump's Supreme Court Pick May Come From This List. Here's Where They Stand on Women's Issues.," 9 July 2018 The Cardinals, meanwhile, are in third place in the NL Central and right in the thick of the senior circuit’s crowded wild card situation. Michael Beller, SI.com, "The Table Setter: Red Sox-Yankees Returns; Nolan Arenado's Continued Brilliance," 25 June 2018 Several rival members of the fighting circuit were on the bus, and some suffered minor injuries. Paul Myerberg, USA TODAY, "Conor McGregor in plea negotiations over his April bus attack, receives new hearing date," 14 June 2018 Although a prominent Never Trump-er during the 2016 primary campaign and a mainstay of the D.C. writing-speaking-moderating circuit, Goldberg’s main specialty has always been owning the libs. Park Macdougald, Daily Intelligencer, "The Idea-Free Book That Has the Right Excited About Ideas," 1 June 2018 Famous as a playground for the rich and famous, the French Riviera will roll out the red carpet for showjumping's elite this weekend with the sixth leg of Global Champions 2018 circuit. CNN, "St Tropez rolls out the red carpet for Global Champions debut," 31 May 2018 But Cannes is not merely a European outpost of the global film festival circuit and a seaside gathering of international film stars. James Mcauley, Washington Post, "In the age of #MeToo, these French actresses are also protesting the film industry’s lack of racial diversity," 18 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

She's dragged the whole country into this and short-circuited a process the rest of us are vested in and not bothered to explain herself? Fox News, "New evidence of political bias at Google; gender politics at play in Michigan Senate race," 21 Sep. 2018 As commander in chief, Trump immediately complicated the military’s case against Golsteyn, raising questions of undue command influence, as well as the possibility that the prosecution is bound to be short-circuited by a pardon. Taimoor Shah, The Seattle Times, "Trump to ‘review’ case of Green Beret accused of murdering Afghan," 16 Dec. 2018 The evening ends with similar impact, as the full company’s arcing paths of running dancers circuit the stage, at times suggesting a whirlpool, before looping out as a whiplash of punctuation. Robert Greskovic, WSJ, "‘The Six Brandenburg Concertos’ Review: Falling Short of Bach," 5 Oct. 2018 And then literally short-circuiting an acquisition. Eric Johnson, Recode, "Why Snap will get acquired before 2020, probably by Amazon," 28 Sep. 2018 Walker followed with a walk, but Clevinger got Miguel Andujar to ground into a double play and struck out Tyler Austin, short-circuiting the only threat against him until the eighth. Pete Caldera, USA TODAY, "Gleyber Torres hits walk-off three-run homer to help Yankees sweep Indians," 6 May 2018 John mentioned some of them Judge Brett Kavanaugh, D.C. circuit U.S. Court of Appeals here in Washington. Fox News, "Leonard Leo on replacement options for Justice Kennedy," 28 June 2018 Warped legislative maps short-circuit the nation’s democratic process by creating legislatures that don’t quite reflect the voters’ collective will. Matt Ford, The New Republic, "The Consequences of the Supreme Court’s Punt on Gerrymandering," 18 June 2018 The awards circuit red carpet in recent years has been overrun with cis actors who play trans characters, are celebrated and honored for it, and move on to the next role while those who actually live as transgender can be bullied, beaten, or killed. Ty Burr, BostonGlobe.com, "Who gets to play transgender roles?," 12 July 2018

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

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for circuit

Noun and Verb

Middle English, from Middle French & Latin; Middle French circuite, from Latin circuitus, from circumire, circuire to go around, from circum- + ire to go — more at issue entry 1

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Statistics for circuit

Last Updated

11 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for circuit

The first known use of circuit was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for circuit

circuit

noun

English Language Learners Definition of circuit

: a series of performances, sports events, lectures, etc., that are held or done at many different places
: a path or trip around something
: the complete path that an electric current travels along

circuit

noun
cir·​cuit | \ ˈsər-kət How to pronounce circuit (audio) \

Kids Definition of circuit

1 : a boundary line around an area
2 : an enclosed space
3 : movement around something The earth makes a circuit around the sun.
4 : a regular tour of service (as by a judge) around an assigned territory : a course so traveled
5 : a series of performances, competitions, or appearances held at many different places the pro tennis circuit
6 : the complete path of an electric current
7 : a group of electronic parts

circuit

noun
cir·​cuit | \ ˈsər-kət How to pronounce circuit (audio) \

Medical Definition of circuit

1 : the complete path of an electric current including usually the source of electric energy
2 : a neuronal pathway of the brain along which electrical and chemical signals travel … the neurons in this brain circuit communicate using the chemical messenger dopamine.— Helen Fisher, The Wall Street Journal, 13 Feb. 2004

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circuit

noun
cir·​cuit

Legal Definition of circuit

1a : a route formerly taken by traveling judges
b : a district established within a state or the federal judicial system
2 capitalized : the court of appeals for a circuit in the federal judicial system after the 9th Circuit's ruling— V. M. Sher

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