cut·​back | \ ˈkət-ˌbak How to pronounce cutback (audio) \

Definition of cutback

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : something cut back
2 : reduction a cutback in funding

cut back

cut back; cutting back; cuts back

Definition of cut back (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to shorten by cutting : prune

intransitive verb

1 : to interrupt the sequence of a plot (as of a movie) by introducing events prior to those last presented
2 : cut down cut back on sugar

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Synonyms for cutback

Synonyms: Verb

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Examples of cutback in a Sentence

Verb we need to cut back the bushes a bit so that the house number is visible from the street cut back the meeting so everyone could leave early for the long weekend
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Swift did have a nice cutback on Jamel Dean on a 14-yard run. Dave Birkett, Detroit Free Press, "Grading Detroit Lions' loss to Bucs: Secondary gets worse than an F," 26 Dec. 2020 The cutback in travel has been a boon for teleconferencing services. Dee-ann Durbin,, "Future of business travel unclear as virus upends work life," 11 Nov. 2020 The Cowboys’ defensive tackles were collectively slow out of their stance and easily reached by Cleveland’s interior offensive line, creating giant cutback lanes for the Browns' running backs. John Owning, Dallas News, "Film room: 3 things we learned from Cowboys-Browns, including a silver lining hidden within the loss to Cleveland," 5 Oct. 2020 Gurley looked for a cutback lane that wasn’t there. Luke Johnson,, "How Saints defense showed its backbone: Inside a crucial red zone stop in final 2 minutes," 6 Dec. 2020 On the Gophers’ first drive of the third quarter, quarterback Tanner Morgan had two completions for 40 yards, including the 25-yarder to Bateman on a nifty cutback move to the outside away from double coverage. Marcus Fuller, Star Tribune, "Gophers' Rashod Bateman impresses, but it's not enough vs. Michigan," 24 Oct. 2020 But now comes a new question: Will a recent upsurge in COVID-19 cases in Connecticut, amid a national resurgence of the virus, drag the DMV back into another frustrating suspension or cutback of testing and other services? Jon Lender,, "Jon Lender: As COVID-19 rises again, will DMV maintain driver testing and other services?," 7 Nov. 2020 If the linebackers don’t shift their gaps with the sift and play too far to the front side, there will be a giant cutback opportunity that gets the ball carrier to the second level very easily, often resulting in a big play. John Owning, Dallas News, "Film room: 3 bold predictions for Cowboys-Eagles, including why Zack Martin should make his return as a tackle," 30 Oct. 2020 Diggs did an excellent job pursuing the RB from inside-out, which prevented the cutback and put Diggs' pursuit angle on a line to the RB before prior to the first-down marker. John Owning, Dallas News, "Film room: How did the Cowboys' rookie starters fare against the LA Rams?," 16 Sep. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb After that, releases from a dam had to be cut back and the Gunnison was left much shallower than usual, with rocks protruding in stretches where boats would normally be drifting until the end of September. Ian James,, "Climate's toll on the Colorado River: 'We can weather maybe a couple of years'," 1 Jan. 2021 Vandegrift worked from home as a researcher but eventually had to cut back her hours. Morgan Romero, oregonlive, "5 Oregonians describe emotional, physical toll of COVID-19: ‘absolutely brutal’," 24 Dec. 2020 Another attempt was shelved this year after the coronavirus pandemic forced lawmakers to cut back on their agendas. Alexei Koseff,, "Jail time for nonviolent drug crimes in California would be cut under Scott Wiener bill," 15 Dec. 2020 Restaurants would be wise to highlight a creative meatless option or two on their menus, not just for vegetarians and vegans, but for those of us who want to cut back on our meat consumption. Washington Post, "How to freshen up your takeout game and keep restaurant food hot in the cold," 11 Dec. 2020 As hospitals remain overwhelmed with coronavirus patients, many medical centers have had to cut back on procedures that take place on-site. Fortune Staff, Fortune, "Crystal Ball 2021: Predictions for the economy, politics, technology, and more," 1 Dec. 2020 The program is meant to cut back on the transmission of COVID-19 at these group-living facilities, which also includes adult day-care centers, DeWine said. Andrew J. Tobias, cleveland, "Ohio to spend $20 million improving air quality at nursing homes and other group living centers as part of COVID-19 fight," 1 Dec. 2020 The pandemic has given the council a good starting point, Winder Newton added, since county departments were forced to cut back in anticipation of economic disaster. Leia Larsen, The Salt Lake Tribune, "Now a supermajority on County Council, Salt Lake GOP shares priorities for year ahead," 28 Nov. 2020 The pandemic has also strained household budgets, so families have had to cut back on their consumption of expensive sources of nutrients, such as vegetables. Linda Nordling, Scientific American, "Pandemic of Hunger," 25 Nov. 2020

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


1897, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1871, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

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Time Traveler for cutback

Time Traveler

The first known use of cutback was in 1871

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Statistics for cutback

Last Updated

10 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Cutback.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Jan. 2021.

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How to pronounce cut back (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of cutback

: the act of reducing the number or amount of something

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