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b cutoffs plural : shorts originally made from jeans with the legs cut off at the knees or higher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 Ulanoff says the cutoff is within the past five years. Jefferson Graham, USA TODAY, "Another pandemic shortage: What to do if you can't find a laptop?," 25 Aug. 2020 In President Obama’s 2009 fiscal-stimulus legislation, a scoring system with a cutoff rule determined how much federal funding a city received for its police force, generating this type of quasi-randomness. Joseph W. Sullivan, National Review, "From the Chart Room: Seattle’s Intended Police Defunding — Expected Side Effects," 25 Aug. 2020 The alcohol-sales cutoff, which went into effect a week ago, requires bars and restaurants to stop selling alcohol at 10 p.m., but customers can have until 11 p.m. to finish their drinks. Marc Bona, cleveland, "New poll: More than half of Ohio’s restaurants could close for good," 6 Aug. 2020 With about $40 billion in the fund left before the $25 billion cutoff, that translates to four weeks of payments. Stephen Gandel, CBS News, "Hurricane Laura threatens Trump's $300 additional unemployment aid," 27 Aug. 2020 Stoppage for most days is at 10 p.m., and 11 p.m. on the weekends, with a 5 p.m. cutoff on Sunday. James T. Norman,, "Mundelein board decides more discussion needed for local venue’s outdoor request," 26 Aug. 2020 Johnson is on the bubble, four points outside of the cutoff in his final full season. Dan Gelston, Star Tribune, "Harvick dominates at Dover for seventh Cup victory of the season," 24 Aug. 2020 Johnson is on the bubble, four points outside of the cutoff in his final full season. Dan Gelston,, "NASCAR regular-season champ Kevin Harvick dominates at Dover for 7th Cup victory of the season," 23 Aug. 2020 The early vaccine candidates are being developed predominantly in younger, healthier people with an age cutoff of 55. Trish Hall, Vogue, "Is the Race for a COVID-19 Vaccine Moving Too Fast?," 19 Aug. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The move is one of several steps the administration has taken in favor of Israel, and led the Palestinians to cut off ties with the White House. Lisa Mascaro And Josef Federman, Star Tribune, "Congress questions sale of US residence in Israel to Adelson," 9 Sep. 2020 Officers reviewed footage from May 10 and saw a man matching Orazetti’s description removing the caution tape and throwing it in the garbage, taking the two signs and using bolt cutters to cut off a lock protecting an A-frame sign. The Bend Bulletin, oregonlive, "Bend restaurant owner who removed COVID signs pleads guilty to violating Governor’s order," 2 Sep. 2020 Installing metal sheet piles in earthen levee sections that are long enough to cut off seepage through and beneath the levee. Mark Schleifstein,, "Corps to spend $2 billion elevating levees, installing stronger floodwalls along Mississippi River," 1 Sep. 2020 The move comes as the Trump administration threatens to cut off China’s supplies from abroad. Vildana Hajric,, "China Semiconductor Threat Sparked a $100 Billion Chip Rout," 1 Sep. 2020 The Trump administration has increasingly used its dominance in the semiconductor industry to cut off Chinese companies—particularly Huawei Technologies—from international supplies. Eamon Barrett, Fortune, "China will spend $300 billion on semiconductor imports as U.S. squeezes chip supply," 27 Aug. 2020 One alumnus threatened to cut off support for ASU because the person thought the account was affiliated with the university, the lawsuit said. From Usa Today Network And Wire Reports, USA TODAY, "Party crackdowns, desk shields, broken glass: News from around our 50 states," 25 Aug. 2020 One alumnus threatened to cut off support for ASU because the person thought the account was affiliated with the university, showing that the use of ASU's trademarks is causing confusion, the lawsuit says. Rachel Leingang, The Arizona Republic, "Regents sue Facebook, anonymous owner behind Instagram account claiming to host 'ASU covid parties'," 21 Aug. 2020 Biden voted to cut off federal funds to any school that teaches acceptance of homosexuality. Emma Colton, Washington Examiner, "'Trump is the most pro-gay president in American history': Grenell ad goes viral as he touts Trump's support for gay community," 20 Aug. 2020

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

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

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Last Updated

12 Sep 2020

Cite this Entry

“Cutoff.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Sep. 2020.

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More Definitions for cutoff


How to pronounce cut off (audio)

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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