\ 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taper (see taper entry 2 sense 2b) given to a pattern or die (see die entry 2 sense 3) so that the work can be easily withdrawn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 draftable (audio) , ˈdräf-​ \ adjective
draftee \ ˌdraf-​ˈtē How to pronounce draftee (audio) , ˌdräf-​ \ noun
drafter \ ˈdraf-​tər How to pronounce drafter (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 Not only did Kekalainen scout Koivu during his draft year while Kekalainen was working for Ottawa, but Kekalainen remembers a young Koivu hanging around when Kekalainen and Koivu’s older brother Saku played for the Finnish national team. Sarah Mclellan, Star Tribune, "Former Wild captain Mikko Koivu signs one-year deal with Columbus," 10 Oct. 2020 Three and a half years later, Vassell is projected to go in the lottery of November’s NBA draft. Connor Letourneau, SFChronicle.com, "Why Warriors might be considering drafting once-unheralded Devin Vassell," 9 Oct. 2020 Johnson signed as an undrafted free agent with the Houston Texans after the 2019 draft but was waived in August of that year. Rod Walker, NOLA.com, "Chargers WR Tyron Johnson, ex-Warren Easton standout, returns to Superdome after dazzling NFL debut," 9 Oct. 2020 Armstrong, who couldn't lead the Coyotes' draft efforts Tuesday and Wednesday, spent Thursday meeting with his staff to determine how the club will approach free agency, his first as general manager in the NHL. Jose M. Romero, The Arizona Republic, "Arizona Coyotes GM Armstrong, free from draft constraints, gets set for free agency," 9 Oct. 2020 The state’s initial draft plan sought to prohibit parks from reopening until counties where they are located reach a minimal spread of the coronavirus, with less than 2% of tests coming back positive. R.t. Watson, WSJ, "Why Disney World Is Open but Disneyland Is Closed," 9 Oct. 2020 The state Department of Fish and Game proposed a split among charter guides, the commercial fleet and seafood processors of 32% each in a draft proposal released Monday, CoastAlaska reports. From Usa Today Network And Wire Reports, USA TODAY, "Post-COVID partying, therapy dogs, rising hospitalizations: News from around our 50 states," 9 Oct. 2020 That makes sense considering all the money and draft capital Berry threw at this former problem. Ellis L. Williams, cleveland, "The Browns' offense will still function fine without Nick Chubb: Here’s why - Film Review," 8 Oct. 2020 The agency took three years to develop the draft plan. oregonlive, "Forestry board moves ahead with controversial habitat conservation plan for state forests," 8 Oct. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective So, after thorough pre-draft examination, the Clippers determined the medical risk with Porter was too great, something head coach Doc Rivers spoke about earlier in the Western Conference semifinals. Chris Fedor, cleveland, "Do Cleveland Cavaliers regret not drafting Michael Porter Jr. in 2018? Hey, Chris!," 12 Sep. 2020 Friedl, 24, was signed as a non-draft free agent on Aug. 16, 2016. John Fay, The Enquirer, "Cincinnati Reds run out a different lineup Friday, but David Bell says it's not a shakeup," 8 Aug. 2020 May 1-4 or May 8-11 — Teams may elect to hold one, three-day post-draft rookie minicamp on either of these sets of dates. Kyle Newman, The Denver Post, "Broncos Insider: Dates, events to watch for on the team’s 2020 offseason calendar," 9 Feb. 2020 First round: Navigating the green room As mentioned in previous articles, every player’s situation is different and draft day is no exception. Matt Babcock, SI.com, "The Dreams and Nightmares of Every Agent on NBA Draft Night," 18 June 2018 Kleber had tried to catch the eye of an NBA team twice, withdrawing from draft consideration in 2012 and going undrafted in 2014. Kevin Casas, star-telegram, "Tall tale of a friendship made in Germany and groomed with the Dallas Mavericks," 3 Mar. 2018 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Singh partnered with two representatives, Clare Boothe Luce and Emanuel Celler, to draft a bill and then roped in figures as varied as Albert Einstein and W. E. B. Du Bois as supporters. Dinyar Patel, The Atlantic, "Kamala Harris and the ‘Other 1 Percent’," 7 Oct. 2020 His three picks against the Browns last week were a bad sign, and his leash might be shorter with a head coach in Ron Rivera who didn’t draft him. Doug Lesmerises, cleveland, "Baker Mayfield, Dwayne Haskins, Dak Prescott and quarterbacks who can’t win alone: Young NFL QB Rankings, Week 4," 3 Oct. 2020 This is why, according to league sources, the Warriors are far more likely to trade the No. 2 pick to a team interested in Ball than to draft him for themselves. Connor Letourneau, SFChronicle.com, "Why Warriors are unlikely to draft LaMelo Ball at No. 2," 25 Sep. 2020 Kennedy was asked to draft a justification for this decision, but refused. Jane Mayer, The New Yorker, "A Young Kennedy, in Kushnerland, Turned Whistle-Blower," 21 Sep. 2020 Mostly, Herbert showed traits that led the team to draft him sixth overall out of Oregon and guarantee him $26.6 million. Tom Krasovic, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Column: Patrick Mahomes the difference (again) as Chiefs rally past Chargers," 20 Sep. 2020 Carter has asked the City Attorney’s office to draft a new executive order that opens the program to qualifying low-income families across the city, Karcher-Ramos said, after council members questioned the ZIP code limit. Emma Nelson, Star Tribune, "St. Paul will use CARES Act money for guaranteed income experiment," 16 Sep. 2020 The commission would also draft a quarterly report of changes at APD for the Assembly to review. Aubrey Wieber, Anchorage Daily News, "Anchorage Assembly to consider scaled-back effort to increase police oversight," 29 Sep. 2020 If traditional rules are followed, the Rangers will draft second. Evan Grant, Dallas News, "Even when the Rangers win they still lose. That’s just how this season has worked," 27 Sep. 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

15 Oct 2020

Cite this Entry

“Draft.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/draft. Accessed 24 Oct. 2020.

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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 draught (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 draughty (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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