ed·​it | \ ˈe-dət \
edited; editing; edits

Definition of edit

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to prepare (something, such as literary material) for publication or public presentation edit a manuscript
b : to assemble (something, such as a moving picture or tape recording) by cutting and rearranging edit a film
c : to alter, adapt, or refine especially to bring about conformity to a standard or to suit a particular purpose carefully edited the speech edit a data file
2 : to direct the publication of edits the daily newspaper
3 : delete usually used with out
4 : to modify a gene or gene product of by inserting, deleting, or replacing DNA sequences The first work attempting to edit human embryos grabbed headlines last week.— Penny Sarchet and Michael Le Page — see gene editing



Definition of edit (Entry 2 of 2)

: an instance or result of editing

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Other Words from edit


editable \ ˈe-​də-​tə-​bəl \ adjective

Synonyms for edit

Synonyms: Verb

redraft, revamp, revise, rework

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Examples of edit in a Sentence


This chapter needs to be edited. The book was poorly edited. The stories have been edited for a younger audience. Students learn to edit their essays for grammar and punctuation. The software allows you to edit videos on your computer. This film has been edited for television. an anthology of ancient poetry edited by a local professor
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

That’s fast enough for users to edit video directly on the drive itself, without the need for copying the file from the drive to a local hard drive, then back. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "SanDisk's Extreme Pro portable SSD is so fast you can edit video on it," 8 Jan. 2019 But Pollack’s footage proved virtually impossible to edit because the filmmaker failed to sync the sound. Jake Coyle, The Seattle Times, "Aretha Franklin doc ‘Amazing Grace’ to finally see the light," 6 Nov. 2018 Some take this tinkering to the extreme; people have reportedly even tried to edit their own DNA in an attempt to eliminate a genetic disease. Maridel Reyes, Glamour, "'Biohacking' Your Anxiety Is a Buzzy Practice—but What Does It Actually Mean?," 16 Oct. 2018 Naturally, the internet took this opportunity to meme-ify Kim's odd position and edit her into the funniest and strangest scenarios. Isabel Greenberg, Harper's BAZAAR, "The Internet Turned Kim Kardashian's Latest Underwear Instagram Into a Meme," 8 Aug. 2018 This is the first case where researchers were able to edit a gene for autism to offer relief from one of autism’s symptoms. Emily Price, Fortune, "Scientists Successfully Reduce Autism Symptoms in Mice Through Gene Editing," 27 June 2018 Rogers’ editor, Keith Burris, told the Post-Gazette the issue was over Rogers’ unwillingness to be edited. Rob Tornoe, Philly.com, "Cartoon about migrant children and abortion riles up readers in Bucks County," 22 June 2018 The suit contends Boal did not meet the job criteria of being able to edit and produce broadcast-ready material on his own, skills that Jackson did possess. Matt Campbell, kansascity, "KSHB faces second race discrimination suit in 2 years, this one from sports reporter," 7 June 2018 The brand created the CVS Beauty Mark, a watermark that announces to customers that an image hasn't been edited. Leah Prinzivalli, Glamour, "The 10 Most Groundbreaking Beauty Campaigns of 2018," 22 Dec. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The attorney general’s office on May 23 issued its review, edit and approval of the ballot initiative’s caption, statement and summary. Washington Post, "Oregon’s high court to consider proposed gun-control measure," 6 June 2018 This might be why Musk is now quibbling about the edit. Elizabeth Lopatto, The Verge, "Elon Musk doesn’t respect the SEC, which is still investigating Tesla," 14 Dec. 2018 Scenes involving dismemberment have also been toned down, and gone are any explicit references to drugs (though some of the edits are definitely a bit tongue in cheek). Tracy Brown, The Seattle Times, "How ‘Once Upon a Deadpool’ is different from ‘Deadpool 2,’ besides PG-13 rating," 12 Dec. 2018 The Unix line-ending support, for example, came to Notepad because Microsoft updated the text edit control to support Unix line endings. Peter Bright, Ars Technica, "Latest Windows Insider build makes a major upgrade to, uh… Notepad," 10 Dec. 2018 Everyone who summers in Tuscany is a huge fan of this chic little shop, which stocks the best edit of big and small brands alike. Lilah Ramzi, Vogue, "La DoubleJ Designer JJ Martin Shares Her Guide to Adventuring in Italy," 26 Sep. 2018 Below are some of the most creative and hilarious edits. Isabel Greenberg, Harper's BAZAAR, "The Internet Turned Kim Kardashian's Latest Underwear Instagram Into a Meme," 8 Aug. 2018 The producer will be responsible for a wide range of production tasks, from initial story conception to the final edit. The Economist, "Job listing: Audio producer," 19 Apr. 2018 As the choices on streaming services can seem endless, here’s a tight edit: 19 selections, each of which inspired a Spring 2019 collection. Laird Borrelli-persson, Vogue, "Baby, It’s Cold Outside—Here Are 19 Designer-Approved Movies to Watch Cuddled Up at Home," 11 Dec. 2018

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


1791, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1955, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for edit


back-formation from editor

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Statistics for edit

Last Updated

15 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for edit

The first known use of edit was in 1791

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More Definitions for edit



English Language Learners Definition of edit

: to prepare (something written) to be published or used : to make changes, correct mistakes, etc., in (something written)

: to prepare (a film, recording, photo, etc.) to be seen or heard : to change, move, or remove parts of (a film, recording, photo, etc.)

: to be in charge of the publication of (something)


ed·​it | \ ˈe-dət \
edited; editing

Kids Definition of edit

1 : to correct, revise, and get ready for publication : collect and arrange material to be printed I'm editing a book of poems.
2 : to be in charge of the publication of something (as an encyclopedia or a newspaper) that is the work of many writers

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More from Merriam-Webster on edit

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with edit

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for edit

Spanish Central: Translation of edit

Nglish: Translation of edit for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of edit for Arabic Speakers

Comments on edit

What made you want to look up edit? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to gather or build up little by little

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