jour·​nal | \ ˈjər-nᵊl How to pronounce journal (audio) \

Definition of journal

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a daily newspaper usually used in titles The Wall Street Journal
b : a periodical dealing especially with matters of current interest an academic journal often used in titles The Journal of the American Medical Association
2a : a record of experiences, ideas, or reflections kept regularly for private use : diary
b : a record of current transactions especially : a book of original entry in double-entry bookkeeping
c : an account of day-to-day events
d : a record of transactions kept by a deliberative or legislative body
3 : the part of a rotating shaft, axle, roll, or spindle that turns in a bearing


journaled; journaling; journals

Definition of journal (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive + intransitive

: to keep a personal journal : to enter or record daily thoughts, experiences, etc., in a journal As a kid, I journaled about everything from boys to bad haircuts.Redbook The principal at the school says since students began journaling last year, poor behavior reports have dropped 40 percent.— Stephanie Stahl The students engaged in several process discussions to reflect on their service-learning projects, and they journaled their reactions.Roeper Review

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Other Words from journal


journaler noun, plural journalers
You don't have to be a writer to be a journaler, but journal keeping will make you a writer anyway. — Robert Moss
journaling \ ˈjər-​nᵊl-​iŋ How to pronounce journal (audio) \ noun
Change your attitude about being awake at night. Savor this time alone for journaling or personal reflection. Self Healing First on the agenda for this crew: a process dieticians call journaling, which involves jotting down every single thing eaten for several days … Family Circle

Examples of journal in a Sentence

Noun I've been keeping a journal for several years. She records her dreams in a journal.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun An earlier version misstated the name of the journal where the study was published. Elizabeth Cooney, STAT, 11 Sep. 2021 Weeks passed, and the editors of the journal grew restless. Quanta Magazine, 9 Sep. 2021 Rajkumar, the Mayo Clinic professor who is also editor of a scholarly journal Blood Cancer Journal, said in a series of Twitter posts there are several reasons for what’s happening, including the delta variant, which can’t be controlled. Anthony Man,, 28 Aug. 2021 Meyer, an editor of this journal from 1956 until his death in 1972, was the man who more than any other was responsible for the shape — the intellectual contours — of the modern conservative movement. Neal B. Freeman, National Review, 28 Aug. 2021 Several of the journal’s editors denounced it as cheap, vulgar and self-promotional. Washington Post, 26 Aug. 2021 Published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences journal, the study of satellite photos of a previously unexplored site in Siberia detected large amounts of methane being released from exposed limestone. David Kindy, Smithsonian Magazine, 6 Aug. 2021 Building a connection between people already in the fashion and creative industries and emerging talents is another of the journal’s goals. Steff Yotka, Vogue, 2 Aug. 2021 The three studies and a companion article appeared in Thursday's edition of the journal Science. Marcia Dunn, Chron, 23 July 2021

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


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2b


1803, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for journal


Middle English, service book containing the day hours, from Anglo-French jurnal, from jurnal, adjective, daily, from Latin diurnalis, from diurnus of the day, from dies day — more at deity

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Time Traveler for journal

Time Traveler

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

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Last Updated

15 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Journal.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Sep. 2021.

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More Definitions for journal



English Language Learners Definition of journal

: a book in which you write down your personal experiences and thoughts : diary
: a newspaper
: a magazine that reports on things of special interest to a particular group of people


jour·​nal | \ ˈjər-nᵊl How to pronounce journal (audio) \

Kids Definition of journal

1 : a brief record (as in a diary) of daily happenings
2 : a magazine that reports on things of special interest to a particular group
3 : a daily newspaper

More from Merriam-Webster on journal

Nglish: Translation of journal for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of journal for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about journal


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