cut·out | \ ˈkət-ˌau̇t \

Definition of cutout 

(Entry 1 of 3)

1 : something cut out or off from something else also : the space or hole left after cutting

2 : one that cuts out

3 : an intermediary in a clandestine operation

4 : a record album no longer in production that is sold at a discount

cut out


Definition of cut out (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to form by erosion

2 : to determine or assign through necessity you've got your work cut out for you

3 : to take the place of : supplant

4 : to put an end to : desist from cut out wasteful spending

5 : deprive, defraud cut him out of his share

6a : to remove from a series or circuit : disconnect cut out a car from a train

b : to make inoperative

intransitive verb

1 : to depart in haste

2 : to cease operating

3 : to swerve out of a traffic line

cut out


Definition of cut out (Entry 3 of 3)

: naturally fitted or suited not cut out to be a vet

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Other words from cutout


cutout adjective

Examples of cutout in a Sentence


a cardboard cutout of a famous actor


the engine abruptly cut out now cut that out, or I'm turning this car around!
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The moths were tethered to a metal rod in the center of a plastic drum, and exposed to a moving cutout of a mountain and a synthesized magnetic field the same strength as the one on Earth. Laura Yan, Popular Mechanics, "Moths Can Use the Earth’s Magnetic Field to Navigate," 23 June 2018 Looking for a pursuit — and a purse — that could hold her attention, Kate Brosnahan left her job at Mademoiselle magazine, cashed out her 401(k) and started making mock-up designs out of paper cutouts and Scotch tape with the help of her boyfriend. Adam Tschorn,, "Kate Spade, whose handbags were essential accessories for urban women, dies at 55," 6 June 2018 An accompanying image showed DeVito posing with her cutout. Nick Vadala,, "Danny DeVito takes cardboard cutout of Pa. teen to set of 'It's Always Sunny'," 5 June 2018 Last month, 17-year-old Allison Closs went viral for bringing an unusual date to prom: a life-size cardboard cutout of actor Danny DeVito (wearing a tie and everything). Dana Schwartz,, "Danny DeVito hilariously responds to girl who brought him to prom," 5 June 2018 Some prankster had placed a cardboard cutout of Popeye between them, in roughly the spot where the company plans to exhibit a Jeff Koons sculpture of Popeye, bought for $28 million in 2014. Mark Arsenault,, "Encore Boston Harbor rising to the challenge," 25 May 2018 Miley channeled Old Hollywood glamour but with a modern twist, opting for a retro, S-wave 'do parted to the side and a satin, hot-pink Moschino gown with a S-P-A-R-K-L-Y AF silver cutout and hem. Christina Amoroso, Cosmopolitan, "Miley Cyrus, Her Sparkly Ring, and Liam Hemsworth Stepped Out on Oscars Night," 5 Mar. 2018 Organizers hope to buy a Bob Ross cardboard cutout so people can have their picture taken with the icon. Julia Lyon, Washington Post, "People are waiting in line. Is it Hamilton? No, it’s Bob Ross on YouTube.," 13 July 2018 But a fan holding a giant cardboard cutout of James' face did., "Today: The Chaos of Reunification," 11 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Even without Patterson, Kentucky’s defense has its work cut out for it. Jon Hale, The Courier-Journal, "Kentucky vs. Ole Miss: 3 keys and a prediction ahead of Saturday's game," 3 Nov. 2017 Then the lights cut out, and everything fell into darkness. Sheri Fink, New York Times, "After the Las Vegas Shooting, Concertgoers Became Medics," 15 Oct. 2017 And in preparation for Sunday evening's 2017 Primetime Emmy Awards, Vargas had her work cut out for her. Sarah Kinonen, Allure, "Emmy Awards 2017: Celebrity Aesthetician Joanna Vargas by the Numbers," 17 Sep. 2017

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


1851, in the meaning defined at sense 1


15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1


1645, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for cutout

Last Updated

9 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for cutout

The first known use of cutout was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for cutout



English Language Learners Definition of cutout

: a shape or picture that is cut from a piece of paper, cardboard, etc.


cut·out | \ ˈkət-ˌau̇t \

Kids Definition of cutout

: a shape or picture that has been formed or removed with scissors, a knife, or a saw

More from Merriam-Webster on cutout

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Comments on cutout

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the setting in which something occurs

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