interrupt

verb
in·​ter·​rupt | \ ˌin-tə-ˈrəpt How to pronounce interrupt (audio) \
interrupted; interrupting; interrupts

Definition of interrupt

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to stop or hinder by breaking in interrupted the speaker with frequent questions
2 : to break the uniformity or continuity of a hot spell occasionally interrupted by a period of cool weather

intransitive verb

: to break in upon an action especially : to break in with questions or remarks while another is speaking

interrupt

noun
in·​ter·​rupt | \ ˌin-tə-ˈrəpt How to pronounce interrupt (audio) , ˈin-tə-ˌrəpt \

Definition of interrupt (Entry 2 of 2)

: a feature of a computer that permits the temporary interruption of one activity (such as the execution of a program) in order to perform another also : the interruption itself

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Other Words from interrupt

Verb

interruptible \ ˌin-​tə-​ˈrəp-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce interruptible (audio) \ adjective
interruptive \ ˌin-​tə-​ˈrəp-​tiv How to pronounce interruptive (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms for interrupt

Synonyms: Verb

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Examples of interrupt in a Sentence

Verb It's not polite to interrupt. His dinner was interrupted by a phone call. We interrupt this program to bring you a special announcement. Every summer periods of cool weather occasionally interrupt the intense heat.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Now, the test has been canceled four more times and Busaidy is considering taking the test in a rural area where COVID-19 won’t interrupt it. Ryan Nickerson, Houston Chronicle, "Bellaire teens do good deeds as coronavirus creates frustrating senior year," 6 Aug. 2020 This closure will likely interrupt the dog meat supply to neighboring provinces as well. Kelli Bender, PEOPLE.com, "Animal Welfare Group Shuts Down Dog Meat Slaughterhouse in Cambodia and Rescues 15 Dogs On-Site," 6 Aug. 2020 As a state with the largest disparities in homeownership, that commitment must interrupt the cycles of housing injustice that have scarred our communities for generations. Owen Duckworth, Star Tribune, "Counterpoint: There's still time to stop the eviction epidemic," 28 July 2020 His life had played out exactly as it was meant to, without her there to interrupt it. Seija Rankin, EW.com, "Get a first look at Lore, the new novel from The Darkest Minds creator Alexandra Bracken," 8 July 2020 Mero seems to be calling in from a room full of cleaning supplies, perpetually concerned that one of his kids will interrupt the call. Darren Franich, EW.com, "Emmys: The time has come to nominate Desus & Mero," 9 July 2020 The rear passengers also have the ability to augment and set navigation destinations—helpful for sharing a destination with the driver without having to interrupt front-seat conversations. Roberto Baldwin, Car and Driver, "2021 Mercedes-Benz S-Class Gets Updated Infotainment, 3D Display," 8 July 2020 Besides, the angry body is always ready to interrupt. Anne Enright, The New York Review of Books, "Wanting Wrong," 6 July 2020 Focusing on a work assignment means leaving children to their own mischievous devices—or, in the case of toddlers, to interrupt you every 30 seconds. Yael Chatav Schonbrun And Elizabeth Corey, WSJ, "Work-Life Conflict Can’t Be Solved—and That’s a Good Thing," 27 June 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Faced with out-of-bounds readings for the radar’s hardware, each CDU began to issue radar increment and decrement interrupts to the guidance computer—lots of interrupts. Lee Hutchinson, Ars Technica, "No, a “checklist error” did not almost derail the first moon landing," 5 July 2019

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

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Noun

1957, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for interrupt

Verb

Middle English, from Latin interruptus, past participle of interrumpere, from inter- + rumpere to break — more at reave

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Time Traveler for interrupt

Time Traveler

The first known use of interrupt was in the 15th century

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Statistics for interrupt

Last Updated

10 Aug 2020

Cite this Entry

“Interrupt.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/interrupt. Accessed 13 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for interrupt

interrupt

verb
How to pronounce interrupt (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of interrupt

: to ask questions or say things while another person is speaking : to do or say something that causes someone to stop speaking
: to cause (something) to stop happening for a time
: to cause (something) to not be even or continuous : to change or stop the sameness or smoothness of (something)

interrupt

verb
in·​ter·​rupt | \ ˌin-tə-ˈrəpt How to pronounce interrupt (audio) \
interrupted; interrupting

Kids Definition of interrupt

1 : to stop or hinder by breaking in Don't interrupt our conversation.
2 : to break the sameness or course of A loud crash interrupted the silence.

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Comments on interrupt

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