\ ˈdraft How to pronounce draft (audio) , ˈdräft How to pronounce draft (audio) \

Definition of draft

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 fishing
a : the act of drawing or pulling in a net
b : haul sense 2b a draft of fish
2a : the act or an instance of drinking or inhaling a last draft on her cigarette also : the portion drunk or inhaled in one such act
b : a portion poured out or mixed for drinking : dose
3 mechanical engineering
a : the force required to pull a plow or other implement
b : load or load-pulling capacity the draft of a typical draft horse
4a : the act of moving loads by drawing or pulling : pull
b : a team of animals together with what they draw
5a : delineation, representation a draft for a future skyscraper
c : a preliminary sketch, outline, or version the author's first draft a draft treaty
6 : the act, result, or plan of lengthening or stretching something (such as threads or metal)
7a : the act of causing a liquid to come out of a container or source : the act of drawing (as from a cask or keg)
b : a portion of liquid so drawn a draft of ale
c : draft (see draft entry 2 sense 2) beer a glass of draft
8 nautical : the depth of water a ship draws (see draw entry 1 sense transitive 6) especially when loaded
9a(1) : a system for or act of selecting individuals from a group (as for compulsory military service) debating whether or not to institute a draft
(2) : an act or process of selecting an individual (as for political candidacy) without the individual's expressed consent
b : a group of individuals selected especially by military draft
c sports : a system whereby exclusive rights to selected new players are apportioned among professional teams He was chosen in the first round of the draft.
10a : an order for the payment of money drawn (see draw entry 1 sense 7c) by one person or bank on another
b : the act or an instance of drawing from or making demands upon something : demand
11a : a current of air in a closed-in space felt a draft
b : a device for regulating the flow of air (as in a fireplace) open the draft
12 : angle, taper specifically, industrial engineering : the taper (see taper entry 2 sense 2b) given to a pattern or die (see die entry 2 sense 3) so that the work can be easily withdrawn
13 : a pocket of reduced air pressure behind a moving object also, racing sports : the use of such a draft to save energy
on draft
: ready to be drawn from a receptacle beer on draft



Definition of draft (Entry 2 of 3)

1 animal husbandry : used or adapted for drawing loads draft horses
2 : being or having been ready to be drawn from a receptacle : being or having been on draft drinking draft beer


drafted; drafting; drafts

Definition of draft (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to select for some purpose: such as
a : to conscript for military service was drafted and sent overseas
b sports : to select (a professional athlete) by draft got drafted by the Yankees
2a : to draw the preliminary sketch, version, or plan of draft legislation
b : compose, prepare draft a memo
3 : to draw off or away water drafted by pumps
4 racing sports : to stay close behind (another racer) so as to take advantage of the reduced air pressure created by the leading racer

intransitive verb

1 : to practice draftsmanship
2 racing sports : to draft another racer (as in car or bike racing)

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Other Words from draft


draftable \ ˈdraf-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce draft (audio) , ˈdräf-​ \ adjective
draftee \ ˌdraf-​ˈtē How to pronounce draft (audio) , ˌdräf-​ \ noun
drafter \ ˈdraf-​tər How to pronounce draft (audio) , ˈdräf-​ \ noun

Synonyms for draft

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Verb

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Examples of draft in a Sentence

Noun The published poem differs quite a bit from earlier drafts. You may want to seal the windows with plastic to stop drafts. Verb The two countries are drafting a treaty. The drama club drafted three teenagers to be in the parade. The legislature debated drafting more soldiers. The new rule prohibits teams from drafting players under 18.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The Atlanta Dream selected Carter No. 4 overall, A&M’s highest draft selection in history. Brent Zwerneman, ExpressNews.com, "Texas A&M women drop Kentucky in top 10 showdown," 7 Jan. 2021 Alabama quarterback Mac Jones would take advantage of his soaring draft stock. Paul Myerberg, USA TODAY, "Heisman Trophy race in 2021 is intriguing, unpredictable and full of quarterbacks," 6 Jan. 2021 Crushworthy, which will be part of the brewery’s year-round offerings, will be released in 12- and 16-ounce cans and draft. Marc Bona, cleveland, "Great Lakes Brewing Co.’s 2021 beer-release calendar is out," 6 Jan. 2021 Philadelphia traded five draft choices, including two first-rounders, to the Cleveland Browns to select Wentz with the second pick in the 2016 NFL Draft. Mark Inabinett | Minabinett@al.com, al, "When it’s sunny in Philadelphia, will Jalen Hurts be the quarterback?," 5 Jan. 2021 Republican draft rules do not address the mask issue, which could be taken up by a bipartisan group of House leaders that manages chamber operations. CBS News, "Pennsylvania legislature blocks swearing-in of Democratic incumbent," 5 Jan. 2021 During a Zoom call in mid-October, state Sen. Rosemary Bayer, D-Beverly Hills, and about a half dozen staff members discussed draft legislation to curtail the use of tear gas by law enforcement. Dave Boucher, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan lawmaker blasts FBI after staffer questioned about tear gas bill," 4 Jan. 2021 As has been the pattern since Brunson arrived in the same 2018 draft class as Doncic, the latest performance was steady. Callie Caplan, Dallas News, "Despite Jalen Brunson’s best efforts, Mavericks fail shorthanded test in loss to Bulls," 3 Jan. 2021 About a dozen states take a similar approach, according to a review of draft plans by the Prison Policy Initiative, a Massachusetts think tank. Isaac Stanley-becker, Anchorage Daily News, "Early vaccination in prisons, a public health priority, proves politically charged," 3 Jan. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective When Bruins prospects showed up for the annual post-draft summer camp, Chara typically would be hard at work in the weight room, setting the tone. Matt Porter, BostonGlobe.com, "Zdeno Chara, a towering presence in Boston for 14 seasons, is leaving the Bruins," 30 Dec. 2020 In spring 2019, after leading Ohio State in scoring and rebounding as a sophomore, Kaleb Wesson participated in the NBA’s pre-draft process. Connor Letourneau, SFChronicle.com, "Kaleb Wesson making case for Warriors’ open two-way contract," 17 Dec. 2020 Those moments showcased the traits everyone celebrated during Cleveland’s pre-draft research. Chris Fedor, cleveland, "How Isaac Okoro went from debated draft prospect to ready-made rookie and potential starter," 22 Dec. 2020 Herbert attributes his in-season success to his pre-draft work with quarterback mechanics experts Tom House and John Beck. oregonlive, "Justin Herbert has proved he can be a leader for the Los Angeles Chargers," 22 Dec. 2020 But during Wiseman’s pre-draft workout for Golden State in Miami, team officials were impressed with his ability to take direction. SFChronicle.com, "James Wiseman flashes potential in first practice with Warriors," 14 Dec. 2020 Two months after leaving school, Eubanks found himself in San Antonio for his first pre-draft workout with an NBA team. Jeff Mcdonald, ExpressNews.com, "The ace is at home: How the Spurs’ Drew Eubanks went from baseball prospect to NBA contract," 30 Nov. 2020 In his post-draft recruitment, free-agent Barea chose to sign with the Mavericks after playing the 2006 summer league with the Warriors. Callie Caplan, Dallas News, "J.J. Barea’s last day with Mavs was a ‘thank you’ for championship glory and ‘see you later’ for future career," 10 Dec. 2020 In late September, Obi Toppin flew to Las Vegas for a Finish Line shoot and chance to continue pre-draft workouts at Impact Basketball. Chris Fedor, cleveland, "2020 NBA Draft: Obi Toppin is ‘most polished player’ in the class, but is he a fit with Cleveland Cavaliers?," 10 Nov. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb One of life’s eternal mysteries is why the Red Sox, no matter who makes the calls, cannot draft and develop a first-class pitcher. Bob Ryan, BostonGlobe.com, "Evaluating the state of Boston’s teams in 2020," 29 Dec. 2020 Governments can draft laws and policies, retrain police and form citizen oversight committees to help build a more equitable policing and criminal justice system, improving the lives of Black citizens. Arkansas Online, "OPINION | COLUMNISTS: We need the gift of reform," 27 Dec. 2020 Remember the second-guessing when the Browns traded away the second pick overall in 2016, allowing the Eagles to draft Wentz? Jarrett Bell, USA TODAY, "Opinion: Eagles' Carson Wentz, playing in Cleveland, isn't inspiring remorse among Browns fans," 21 Nov. 2020 The remaining players are fair game for Racing to draft. Hayes Gardner, The Courier-Journal, "Racing Louisville FC, already making history in the city, preps for NWSL expansion draft," 11 Nov. 2020 After coming off an NBA Finals appearance, some expected the Thunder to draft a prospect who could contribute immediately. Omari Sankofa Ii, Detroit Free Press, "How might Detroit Pistons' Troy Weaver approach NBA draft? Here are some clues from OKC," 8 Nov. 2020 The Miami Dolphins did not draft rookie starter Tua Tagovailoa with a Top-5 pick to be a game manager. Safid Deen, sun-sentinel.com, "With powerful defense, Tua Tagovailoa hasn’t had to be flashy during Dolphins’ playoff push," 24 Dec. 2020 April 28: In the seventh round, the Minnesota Vikings draft an end zone choreographer out of Juilliard. Washington Post, "Style Conversational Week 1414: YIP, YIP for 2021," 10 Dec. 2020 In 2001 and 2002, Kiersten helped draft the legislation to create DHS. Fortune, "A cybersecurity agenda for the Biden administration," 9 Dec. 2020

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


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1714, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for draft

Noun, Adjective, and Verb

Middle English draght; akin to Old English dragan to draw — more at draw

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Time Traveler for draft

Time Traveler

The first known use of draft was in the 13th century

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Statistics for draft

Last Updated

13 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Draft.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/draft. Accessed 21 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for draft


How to pronounce draft (audio) How to pronounce draft (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of draft

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: a version of something (such as a document) that you make before you make the final version
: cool air moving in a closed space (such as a room)
: a system in which young people are required to join the armed forces of a country for a period of service



English Language Learners Definition of draft (Entry 2 of 3)

of an animal : used for pulling heavy loads
of beer : stored in and poured from a large container
: not yet in the final form



English Language Learners Definition of draft (Entry 3 of 3)

: to make a version of (something, such as a document or plan) that will need more work in order to be finished
: to choose (someone) for a special purpose
US : to officially order (someone) to join the armed forces


\ ˈdraft How to pronounce draft (audio) , ˈdräft \

Kids Definition of draft

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : a version of something written or drawn (as an essay, document, or plan) that has or will have more than one version I finished the rough draft of my report.
2 : a current of air
3 : a device to regulate an air supply (as in a fireplace)
4 : the act of pulling or hauling : the thing or amount pulled a beast of draft
5 : the act or an instance of drinking or inhaling : the portion drunk or inhaled at one time He took a draft of his drink.
6 : the act of drawing out liquid (as from a cask) : a portion of liquid drawn out a draft of beer
7 : the depth of water a ship needs in order to float
8 : the practice of ordering people into military service
9 : the practice of choosing someone to play on a professional sports team
10 : an order made by one person or organization to another to pay money to a third person or organization



Kids Definition of draft (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : used for pulling loads a draft animal
2 : not in final form a draft report
3 : ready to be drawn from a container draft beer


drafted; drafting

Kids Definition of draft (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : to write or draw a version of something (as an essay or plan) that usually needs more work
2 : to choose someone to do something Mom drafted us to clean the garage.
3 : to pick especially for required military service


variants: or chiefly British draught \ ˈdraft, ˈdrȧft How to pronounce draft (audio) \

Medical Definition of draft

1 : a portion (as of medicine) poured out or mixed for drinking : dose
2 : a current of air in a closed-in space

Other Words from draft

drafty or chiefly British draughty \ ˈdraf-​tē, ˈdrȧf-​ How to pronounce draft (audio) \ adjective

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Legal Definition of draft

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a preliminary version of something (as a law)
2a : a system for or act of selecting individuals from a group (as for military service)
b : the act or process of selecting an individual (as for political candidacy) without his or her expressed consent
3 : an order for the payment of money drawn by one person or bank on another — see also drawee, drawer — compare check
documentary draft
: a draft that will be honored only upon the presentation of certain documents (as an invoice or certificate of title)
sight draft
: a draft payable on presentation
time draft
: a draft payable a specified number of days after the date of the draft or of its presentation

Legal Definition of draft (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to select for some purpose specifically : to conscript for military service
2 : to compose or prepare especially the preliminary version of drafting legislation

intransitive verb

: to practice draftsmanship

Other Words from draft

drafter noun

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