ed·​it | \ ˈe-dət How to pronounce edit (audio) \
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 How to pronounce editable (audio) \ 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

These are edited and condensed excerpts from that conversation. New York Times, "The ‘Pose’ Episode That Brought the Cast to Tears," 9 July 2019 The interview has been edited and condensed for length. San Diego Union-Tribune, "After bankruptcy, 3 different owners, how Mediterranean restaurant Daphne’s has landed on its feet," 5 July 2019 Interview has been edited and condensed for length and clarity. Morgan Baila, refinery29.com, "Meet Angus Cloud, Euphoria's Lovable Drug Dealer & Breakout Star," 5 July 2019 This conversation has been lightly edited and condensed. STAT, "How Europe is building a sweeping system to study medication safety in pregnant and lactating women," 21 June 2019 The conversation has been edited and condensed for clarity. John Detrixhe, Quartz, "Jack Dorsey says now is our chance to build a global currency for the internet," 14 June 2019 This conversation has been edited and condensed for clarity. Zahra Barnes, SELF, "Dr. Kiarra King on Gynecology, Black Women's Health, and Advocating for Yourself," 12 June 2019 The following transcript has been edited and condensed. Jennifer Day, chicagotribune.com, "A Midwestern experience: Paula Saunders reflects on 'The Distance Home'," 6 June 2019 The modification edits a $70 million dredging project that removed nearly 2 million cubic yards of debris from the West Fork San Jacinto River around Kingwood. Kaila Contreras, Houston Chronicle, "FEMA, Army Corp will begin dredging Kingwood mouthbar in July," 28 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

By the time the game ended, my work looked like the first edit of a novel. Paul Daugherty, Cincinnati.com, "Doc's Morning Line: Let's go back to 1971 when baseball, the MLB All-Star Game were better," 2 July 2019 This is a letter Moses wrote addressing his battle with depression and coping with loss, with minor edits and the addition of information at the end about how to identify persons at risk. Trey Moses, Indianapolis Star, "'I saw the body of a brother and a best friend.' How Trey Moses deals with depression and loss of a teammate," 30 Apr. 2017 He and his colleagues built an algorithm capable of spotting AI edits of videos of famous politicians like Donald Trump and and Elizabeth Warren, by tracking small facial movements unique to each individual. James Vincent, The Verge, "Deepfake detection algorithms will never be enough," 27 June 2019 Kiner with two years of prep football left is in no hurry to announce his college decision and plans to take more visits, so more edits will be coming. Scott Springer, Cincinnati.com, "Division I football recruit Corey Kiner of Roger Bacon gets creative boost on Twitter," 26 June 2019 Netflix’s biggest and most troubling edit to the show, for which the platform created a new English-language translation and voice track, dials back its famous homoerotic subtext. Aja Romano, Vox, "Netflix’s re-translation of Neon Genesis Evangelion is drawing backlash for queer erasure," 24 June 2019 Bembo—who went on to have an affair with Lucrezia Borgia, edit Petrarch’s poems, become a cardinal, and help make Tuscan the basis of modern standard Italian—wasn’t a lightweight figure. Christopher Tayler, Harper's magazine, "New Books," 24 June 2019 Instructor Mike McMahon will use several photo editing apps to cover cropping, adjusting lighting and color and other easy edits to use on your smartphone. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Shelter to Soldier receives Petco grant," 15 June 2019 Burgio, too, thinks that the edits probably led to other deletions or insertions that are difficult to detect, as is often the case with gene editing. David Cyranoski, Scientific American, "Russian Biologist Plans More CRISPR-Edited Babies," 11 June 2019

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

16 Jul 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 How to pronounce edit (audio) \
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 complain fretfully

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