\ ˈdash How to pronounce dash (audio) \
dashed; dashing; dashes

Definition of dash

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to break by striking or knocking angrily dashed the bouquet of flowers against the table
2 : to knock, hurl, or thrust violently dashed water onto his face a boat that had been dashed against the rocks
3 : splash, spatter his pants were dashed with mud
4a : ruin, destroy the news dashed his hopes
c : to make ashamed dashed by her scorn
5 : to affect by mixing in something different his delight was dashed with bitterness
6 : to complete, execute, or finish off hastily used with down or off dashed down a drinkdash off a letter… he dashed off the book in eight weeks …— Paul Fussell
7 [ euphemism ] : damn entry 1 sense 4 Dash it all!

intransitive verb

1 : to move with sudden speed dashed down the hallway
2 : smash waves dashing against the rocks



Definition of dash (Entry 2 of 2)

1a archaic : blow
b(1) : a sudden burst or splash a dash of rain
(2) : the sound produced by such a burst
2a : a stroke of a pen
b grammar : a punctuation mark — that is used especially to indicate a break in the thought or structure of a sentence
3 : a small usually distinctive addition a dash of salt a dash of humor
4 : flashy display really cuts a dash in his new suit
5 : animation in style and action the verve and dash of her personal writings
6a : a sudden onset, rush, or attempt make a dash for shelter
b sports : a short fast race won the 100-meter dash
7 : a long click or buzz forming a letter or part of a letter (as in Morse code) a combination of dots and dashes
8 automotive vehicles : dashboard sense 2 put the map on the dash

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Examples of dash in a Sentence


I'm sorry, but I must dash. I'm late. She dashed down the hallway to the bathroom. People were dashing inside to get out of the rain. The waves dashed the boat against the rocks. Her hopes of winning a medal were dashed after she broke her leg.


We made a dash for the exit. the cavalry officer's dash and enthusiasm inspired his men to follow him into battle
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

In a nation where soaring hopes were dashed by PT recklessness and entitlement, that message sells. Mary Anastasia O’grady, WSJ, "Brazil’s Trumpian Candidate," 30 Sep. 2018 Mazda might have celebrated its first IMSA win with the RT24-P; instead the #55 car had to dash into the pits for a splash of fuel with two laps left to go. Jonathan M. Gitlin, Ars Technica, "This isn’t a game: We try out a professional driver-in-the-loop simulator," 9 Aug. 2018 Favorite O'ahu moment, day 3: Lydia received an amazing hula lesson from @kamakapili, who then had to dash off to his other job as a weather forecaster for KHON-TV. Annemarie Conte, Woman's Day, "I Took My Daughter to Hawaii to Teach Her How to Be a Better Traveler," 1 Aug. 2018 Summer in the Snow Was there ever a better metaphor for couture than dashing through a snowstorm to find yourself in the warm sun of the Riviera? Jordan Roth, Vogue, "Jordan Roth: A Man’s View on the Haute Couture," 28 Jan. 2019 And in January of 2016, a cow dashed through busy streets after escaping a halal slaughterhouse in Jamaica, Queens. Zolan Kanno-youngs, WSJ, "Goats Hoof It to Subway Line in Brooklyn," 20 Aug. 2018 After dashing up the mountain, Burns, his wife and their 2-year-old son waited in the dark with about 200 other people from their village for the danger to pass. Fox News, "The Latest: Pope prays for dead and consolation for grieving," 6 Aug. 2018 Hergenrader sprinted across Southwest Beaverton Hillsdale Highway to Fred Meyer and dashed through the grocery store, Shaw said. Everton Bailey Jr., OregonLive.com, "Man runs out of Beaverton court to avoid jail, ends up getting more jail time," 30 May 2018 An Ohio couple who lost both their frozen embryos when a fertility clinic's storage tank overheated last week are the first in a wave of patients heading to court to hold the facility accountable for dashing their dreams of future children. chicagotribune.com, "Patients mobilize after malfunctions at fertility clinics damage thousands of eggs, embryos," 13 Mar. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Tesla says that video starts recording 10 minutes before anything happens, presumably looping over its own footage until something happens, like a dash cam. Alexander George, Popular Mechanics, "Tesla Rolls Out Sentry Mode and Dog Mode to the Model 3," 14 Feb. 2019 Jay Z, keeping with his wife’s track-and-field theme, dressed up as a member of the 1968 US men’s track and field Olympic team, which won two medals in the 200–meter dash, with sprinters Tommie Smith taking gold and John Carlos taking bronze. Aja Romano, Vox, "Beyoncé and Jay–Z paid tribute to black athletes — and black power — for Halloween," 1 Nov. 2018 Robinson won the 200-meter dash in 25.65 seconds and also finished first in the 400 (57.75) and the long jump (17 feet, 5 inches), while Meininger secured victories in the 1,600 (5:19.19) and 3,200 (11:30.23). Kyle Stackpole, Howard County Times, "Several county teams win outdoor track and field regional titles," 22 May 2018 Still, considering a lot of drivers just mount their phones on the dash and use Google Maps and Waze to navigate traffic, the popularity of these apps over car company systems is already there. Shannon Liao, The Verge, "Google partners with the world’s biggest auto group to bring Android to cars," 18 Sep. 2018 Town Manager Peter Souza plans to hire an independent investigator to look into a complaint stemming from a car crash involving a former school board member and allegations that the dash cam video from the responding police cruiser was altered. Steven Goode, Courant Community, "Town Manager Calls for Independent Investigation into Allegations of Dash Cam Tampering," 13 July 2018 The interior was striking, with black square-quilted seat inserts, contrast stitching and piping on the bolsters, plush door panels in brown, and wood on the dash and center stack. Emma Jayne Williams, star-telegram, "Nissan Armada full-size SUV has plentyof room for the family, lots of technology," 17 June 2018 Technically, Ahmed, the Washington Huskies sophomore running back, logged a faster time (4.43 seconds) in the 40-yard dash early this year at the Husky Combine in March. Percy Allen, The Seattle Times, "Salvon Ahmed and Myles Gaskin go for a midnight run to find out who’s faster," 20 Aug. 2018 Brian Doll still remembers the looks of bewilderment from his staff when the New Trier football coaches were timing players in the 40-yard dash last summer. Steve Reaven, chicagotribune.com, "Carson Kosonovich, Donovan Perkins still shutting the door in New Trier secondary," 14 July 2018

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


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


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

History and Etymology for dash

Verb and Noun

Middle English dasshen, probably from Middle French dachier to impel forward

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Dictionary Entries near dash








Statistics for dash

Last Updated

9 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for dash

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

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More Definitions for dash



English Language Learners Definition of dash

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to run or move quickly or suddenly
: to hit something in a violent and forceful way
: to break or destroy (something) by throwing or hitting it against something



English Language Learners Definition of dash (Entry 2 of 2)

: a punctuation mark — that is used especially to show a break in thought or in the structure of a sentence (as in "We don't know where—or how—the problem began.")
: a small amount of something that is added to something else
: the act of running or moving quickly or suddenly in a particular direction or to a particular place


\ ˈdash How to pronounce dash (audio) \
dashed; dashing

Kids Definition of dash

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to knock, hurl, or shove violently The storm dashed the boat against a reef.
2 : smash entry 2 sense 1 He dashed the plate to pieces.
3 : splash entry 1 sense 2 She dashed water on her face.
4 : ruin entry 1 sense 2 Their hopes were dashed.
5 : to complete or do hastily He dashed off a note before leaving.
6 : to move with sudden speed The boys dashed up the stairs.



Kids Definition of dash (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a sudden burst or splash a dash of cold water
2 : a punctuation mark — that is used most often to show a break in the thought or structure of a sentence
3 : a small amount : touch Add a dash of salt.
4 : liveliness in style and action A scarf adds dash to the outfit.
5 : a sudden rush or attempt … Jane made a mad dash for the hall bathroom and yelled, “Home-free-all!”— Judy Blume, Sheila the Great
6 : a short fast race 100-yard dash
7 : a long click or buzz forming a letter or part of a letter (as in Morse code)
8 : dashboard


\ ˈdash\

Medical Definition of DASH

: a diet that is designed to lower blood pressure and emphasizes the consumption of fruit, vegetables, grains, and low-fat or non-fat dairy products

History and Etymology for dash

dietary approaches to stop hypertension

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More from Merriam-Webster on dash

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with dash

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for dash

Spanish Central: Translation of dash

Nglish: Translation of dash for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of dash for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about dash

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