etaoin shrdlu

noun
eta·​oin shrd·​lu | \ ˈet|ēˌȯinˈshərdˌlü, ˈēt|, ˈāt|, |əˌȯi-, -n(ˌ)shərdˈlü \
plural -s

Definition of etaoin shrdlu

: a combination of letters set by running a finger down the first and then the second left-hand vertical banks of six keys of a Linotype machine to produce a temporary marking slug not intended to appear in the final printing

Love words?

You must — there are over 200,000 words in our free online dictionary, but you are looking for one that’s only in the Merriam-Webster Unabridged Dictionary.

Start your free trial today and get unlimited access to America's largest dictionary, with:

  • More than 250,000 words that aren't in our free dictionary
  • Expanded definitions, etymologies, and usage notes
  • Advanced search features
  • Ad free!

Learn More about etaoin shrdlu

Statistics for etaoin shrdlu

Cite this Entry

“Etaoin shrdlu.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/etaoin%20shrdlu. Accessed 26 January 2020.

Comments on etaoin shrdlu

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

WORD OF THE DAY

to express in a more acceptable way

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Intact Latin Quiz

  • roman tablet
  • What did focus mean in Latin?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Bee Cubed

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!