\ ˈfil-ˌin How to pronounce fill-in (audio) \

Definition of fill-in

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: someone or something that fills in

fill in

filled in; filling in; fills in

Definition of fill in (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to enrich (something, such as a design) with detail
2 : to give necessary or recently acquired information to I'll fill you in

intransitive verb

: to fill a vacancy usually temporarily interns filled in for regular staffers

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Examples of fill-in in a Sentence


my friend quickly filled me in on the portion of the movie that I had missed she's only filling in while the regular secretary is on vacation

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Prince Charles has gradually been filling in for his mother and represented the head of state on foreign trips during her Diamond Jubilee year to Australia and New Zealand. Fox News, "Queen Elizabeth to hand over powers to Prince Charles in 2 years, royal expert says," 9 July 2019 In addition to bold shades, Chanel is launching a new-and-improved formula that's packed with bioceramics, which help fill in any nail ridges for a smooth and long-lasting finish, and ceramides to strengthen and nourish your nails over time. Karina Hoshikawa,, "Chanel Just Dropped 6 Metallic Nail Polishes — & We Want Them All," 5 July 2019 So Kiffin asked him to fill in on the kickoff return team., "For Former Soldiers and NFL Players, a Place to Heal," 1 July 2019 While the Circuit Court judges are recuperating, retired Senior Judge Kenneth Lopp is serving in Jacobs' place while Steven Fleece was appointed to fill in for Adams. Grace Schneider, The Courier-Journal, "Judge charged in White Castle fight is healing, preparing for legal battle," 1 July 2019 Then continue the rotation at a slighter incline to fill in any holes until the pan is horizontal and the crepe is cooked through. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "No more lumps: Let physics be your guide to making the perfect crepe," 28 June 2019 Anyone chosen to fill in temporarily won’t have all of the decision-making power that a defense secretary needs when the nation is at war in several countries and conducting major military operations in dozens. Washington Post, "A perilous time to have temps running the Pentagon," 22 June 2019 Howdy, my name is John Cherwa and I’m filling in for Houston Mitchell, who will Zamboni the driveway to anyone who has any idea who the Kings and Ducks first-round picks are. John Cherwa,, "The Sports Report: Albert Pujols is welcomed home," 22 June 2019 Of course, in a case as cold as this one, which happened before the era of cell phones and social media, there are bound to be a lot of gaps that memories clouded by time won’t be able to fill in. Megan Molteni, WIRED, "Lawyers in a Murder Trial Clash Over a DNA Forensics Method," 17 June 2019

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


1917, in the meaning defined above


1840, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

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Time Traveler for fill-in

The first known use of fill-in was in 1840

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More Definitions for fill-in



English Language Learners Definition of fill-in

: someone who takes the place of another person who is away for a short time : someone who fills in for someone else

More from Merriam-Webster on fill-in

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with fill-in

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for fill-in

Comments on fill-in

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


an act or instance of editing or removing

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