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

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 Boone Ashworth, who edited the show, can be found at @booneashworth. Wired Staff, WIRED, "Rebalancing Our Relationship With Tech," 28 June 2019 The display also features Sam Zimbalist, who edited an earlier version of the movie, filmed in 1925, featuring Oliver Hardy. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Participants in self-improvement workshop recognized," 28 June 2019 Child wrote and edited books promoting the suffragist and abolitionist causes. Time Staff, Time, "15 Unsung Moments From American History That Historians Say You Should Know About," 28 June 2019 Eric Lach writes and edits The Current, The New Yorker’s online news and current-events column. Eric Lach, The New Yorker, "Can Michael Bennet Climb Out of the Second Tier at the Democratic Debates?," 26 June 2019 Entries are edited for content and are published as space is available. Bay Area News Group, The Mercury News, "What’s Happening sports briefs for June 28," 26 June 2019 Many scientists around the world have called for a global moratorium on editing DNA in human embryos. STAT, "Alarmed by new ‘CRISPR babies’ plan, top science figures say they’re powerless to stop it," 24 June 2019 This seeming endorsement of Stalin’s strategy was not part of the compulsory edits foisted upon Grossman. Aaron Lake Smith, Harper's magazine, "The Trials of Vasily Grossman," 24 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

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 The Washington Post discovered the discrepancy between the drafts as part of an investigation into the Bransfield case and published a story describing the edits Wednesday. Jonathan M. Pitts, baltimoresun.com, "Catholic church reform advocates criticize Lori for deleting mention of bishop's gifts in report to Vatican," 7 June 2019 Now, a study finds that the edits may have actually hurt the babies' lifespans. Michael Greshko, National Geographic, "First gene-edited babies may be at risk of early death," 3 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

2 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

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