de·​lete | \ di-ˈlēt How to pronounce delete (audio) , dē- \
deleted; deleting

Definition of delete

transitive verb

: to eliminate especially by blotting out, cutting out, or erasing delete a passage in a manuscript delete a computer file The email was accidentally deleted.

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Other Words from delete

deletable \ di-​ˈlē-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce delete (audio) , dē-​ \ adjective
an easily deletable photo

Examples of delete in a Sentence

Delete this name from the list. When the movie was shown on TV all the swearwords had been deleted.
Recent Examples on the Web Only later in the day did the platform delete it entirely. Barbara Ortutay,, "Capitol violence sparks a social media reckoning with Trump," 7 Jan. 2021 However, other mutated versions of the virus also delete the same S gene target, so genetic sequencing is required as a second step to confirm that the virus involved is indeed B.1.1.7. San Diego Union-Tribune, "First California case of UK coronavirus variant confirmed in San Diego County," 30 Dec. 2020 But the company continued to lock the New York Post's Twitter account, insisting that the outlet delete its Hunter Biden story tweets, despite no longer apparently violating any Twitter policies. Jerry Dunleavy, Washington Examiner, "Computer repair shop owner sues Twitter for defamation over handling of Hunter Biden story," 28 Dec. 2020 Redfield allegedly ordered his staff to delete an email from Alexander asking the CDC to change information in a report on the effect of the coronavirus on children. Melissa Quinn, CBS News, "House Democrats subpoena Azar and Redfield in CDC political interference probe," 21 Dec. 2020 The Times, however, learned that Villanueva ordered the deputies to quietly delete the photos, a move that some inside the department — as well as legal experts — said could amount to the destruction of evidence. Richard Winton, Los Angeles Times, "2nd lawsuit is filed over Kobe Bryant helicopter crash photos," 17 Dec. 2020 Soon afterward, DeQuattro ordered security to delete McConnell’s presentation from his office computer. Ronan Farrow, The New Yorker, "How a C.I.A. Coverup Targeted a Whistle-blower," 30 Oct. 2020 Twitter also blocked the video on its site and required the Trump 2020 campaign account to delete a tweet with the same clip. Rachel Lerman, Washington Post, "Facebook says it’s taken down 7 million posts for spreading coronavirus misinformation," 11 Aug. 2020 Duggan's chief of staff, Alexis Wiley, ordered city staff to delete their emails related to Make Your Date as the mayor’s ties came under scrutiny by the Free Press and others, according to the inspector general's report. Joe Guillen, Detroit Free Press, "City of Detroit wanted $222,000 for public records. So Free Press sued.," 6 Aug. 2020

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

1540, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for delete

Latin deletus, past participle of delēre to wipe out, destroy

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Time Traveler for delete

Time Traveler

The first known use of delete was in 1540

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Statistics for delete

Last Updated

20 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Delete.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for delete


How to pronounce delete (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of delete

: to remove (something, such as words, pictures, or computer files) from a document, recording, computer, etc.


de·​lete | \ di-ˈlēt How to pronounce delete (audio) \
deleted; deleting

Kids Definition of delete

: to take out especially by erasing, crossing out, or cutting delete a sentence delete a computer file

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Comments on delete

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