cut·​off | \ ˈkət-ˌȯf How to pronounce cutoff (audio) \

Definition of cutoff

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the act or action of cutting off
2a : the new and relatively short channel formed when a stream cuts through the neck of an oxbow
c : a channel made to straighten a stream
3 : a device for cutting off
4a : something cut off
b cutoffs plural : shorts originally made from jeans with the legs cut off at the knees or higher
5 : the point, date, or period for a cutoff

cut off

cut off; cutting off; cuts off

Definition of cut off (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to bring to an untimely end
2 : to stop the passage of cut off communications
3 : shut off, bar the river cut off their retreat
4 : discontinue, terminate cut off a subscription
5 : separate, isolate cut herself off from her family
6 : disinherit threatened to cut him off without a penny
7a : to stop the operation of : turn off cut off the engine
b : to stop or interrupt while in communication the operator cut me off

intransitive verb

: to cease operating

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Other Words from cutoff


cutoff adjective

Examples of cutoff in a Sentence

Noun a cutoff of the water supply The cutoff for new applications is next Wednesday. Verb the majority party cut off debate and forced a vote on the bill the dog cut off the one sheep that had to be sheared
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The cutoff point for which week an acute case of Covid-19 becomes a case of long Covid remains controversial. Grace Browne, Wired, 4 Aug. 2021 This size is the cutoff point where most people consider the screen large enough to show all the pixels and details from a distance. Hunter Fenollol, Popular Mechanics, 23 July 2021 About 1 in 4 people on unemployment will lose their benefits from the early cutoff of jobless benefits, according to an estimate from the Century Foundation, a liberal-leaning think tank. Aimee Picchi, CBS News, 22 July 2021 Their community is more than three miles from the cutoff point for the local water utility. Washington Post, 28 June 2021 The only burden is their early cutoff, as Boston has yet to realize its potential for an active nightlife, unlike New York City, for example, which has nearly 24-hour subway service., 18 June 2021 Not only the Indigenous peoples, who depended on the once free-flowing rivers for irrigating their fields, suffered from the sudden cutoff., 17 Dec. 2020 There is likely to be a sharp northern cutoff to the rainfall., 16 Aug. 2021 The cutoff for the list increased to $315 million from $255 million last year. Naazneen Karmali, Forbes, 2 June 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb This later made sense as Taz cut off CM Punk’s promo. Alfred Konuwa, Forbes, 8 Sep. 2021 In the Sacramento River watershed, which covers rivers and creeks north of Sacramento, water users with rights gained after the mid-1890s are being cut off. Kurtis Alexander, San Francisco Chronicle, 7 Sep. 2021 The conflicting accounts of what was happening on the ground in the area 70 miles north of Kabul, the country’s capital, were hard to verify because Internet and telephone service into the region has been cut off., 6 Sep. 2021 The military has acted swiftly to cut off connectivity and access to information, and digital surveillance is also rising. Emily Fishbein, Rolling Stone, 6 Sep. 2021 More recently, companies are interspersing larger electrical systems with microgrids, which can generate power locally when cut off from a regional power-generating station. Washington Post, 4 Sep. 2021 Once the Fixer Upper star's hair was cut off, it was donated to the non-profit organization, Children With Hair Loss, which takes human hair and transforms it into a wig. Kaitlyn Frey,, 27 Aug. 2021 The night before, after the sluggish Internet in Kabul cut off their video chat, Mohammad’s wife had sent him texts through their 11-year-old daughter. William Wan, Anchorage Daily News, 25 Aug. 2021 Police said the shooting erupted after someone in a dark-colored, four-door sedan cut off the victim and her husband in traffic, followed the couple and opened fire. Bill Hutchinson, ABC News, 24 Aug. 2021

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


1741, in the meaning defined at sense 1


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

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Time Traveler for cutoff

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near cutoff

cut off


cut off from

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Statistics for cutoff

Last Updated

13 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Cutoff.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Sep. 2021.

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More Definitions for cutoff



English Language Learners Definition of cutoff

: the act of stopping the movement or supply of something
: the time when something must be done or completed
: short pants that are made from long pants by cutting off the legs at the knees or higher


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