jour·​nal | \ˈjər-nᵊl \

Definition of journal 

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

e : log sense 3

f : log sense 4

3 : the part of a rotating shaft, axle, roll, or spindle that turns in a bearing

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Examples of journal in a Sentence

I've been keeping a journal for several years. She records her dreams in a journal.

Recent Examples on the Web

The study, led by researchers at Boston Children’s Hospital, appears in the journal BMJ and is arguably one of the most rigorous diet studies ever done. Julia Belluz, Vox, "Does cutting carbs really help keep weight off? The big new diet study, explained.," 17 Nov. 2018 For a study published today in the journal PLOS One researchers analyzed 53 studies (covering over 47,000 participants) that looked at how the general public, professionals, and patients viewed genetic privacy. Angela Chen, The Verge, "Treating ‘genetic privacy’ like it’s just one thing keeps us from understanding people’s concerns," 31 Oct. 2018 Besides the book's release, Hawking's final paper, on the black hole information paradox, was recently published by his colleagues in the preprint journal ArXiv. Sarah Lewin,, "Stephen Hawking's Children and Colleagues Discuss Physicist's Final Book, Legacy," 17 Oct. 2018 Now, Google as a company tried to dismiss this journal story by saying well, these were only musings of junior officials and had to walk that back and admit some senior executives were involved. Fox News, "Media's Kavanaugh spectacle," 24 Sep. 2018 This color can be found in the Wanderer color journal from earlier this year in Sherwin-Williams 2019 Colormix Color Forecast. Taylor Mead, House Beautiful, "Sherwin-Williams's Color Of The Year Is Cavern Clay," 12 Sep. 2018 Some of them were as old as 2.1 million years, according to the study in Wednesday’s journal Nature. Time, "A Discovery in China Suggests That Human-Like Species Left Africa 250,000 Years Earlier Than Believed," 13 July 2018 The journal called for systematic study of the accolades Mr Xi had earned—a School of Sycophantology, as David Bandurski, co-director of the China Media Project at the University of Hong Kong, puts it. The Economist, "In its trade war with America, China dials down the hype," 12 July 2018 Her work has also been published in several academic journals, covering topics such as 9/11 and child abuse. Kaitlyn Schallhorn, Fox News, "Who is Christine Blasey Ford, the professor who accused Brett Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct?," 28 Sep. 2018

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

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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Dictionary Entries near journal






journal bearing

journal box

Statistics for journal

Last Updated

30 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for journal

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

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More Definitions for journal



Financial Definition of journal

What It Is

In the finance world, journal is short for journal entry. It is also short for The Wall Street Journal.

How It Works

Journal entries are records of individual financial transactions in a company's accounting system. Due to the standards of double-entry bookkeeping, journal entries typically involve a debit to one or more accounts and a credit to one or more accounts in the same amount. For example, the journal entry for the purchase of a $20,000 fleet vehicle might reflect a $20,000 increase in assets and a corresponding $20,000 decrease in cash.

Why It Matters

Journal entries are the heart and soul of accounting. Accountants must know how to make them correctly so that a company's financial transactions are recorded accurately and in turn convey correct information to shareholders, analysts and other stakeholders. When the books don't balance or there is an error in the numbers, accountants often go back to the journal entries to find out what went wrong. In this way, journal entries are a sort of diary for companies.

Source: Investing Answers



English Language Learners Definition of journal

: a book in which you write down your personal experiences and thoughts

: a newspaper

: a magazine that reports on things of special interest to a particular group of people


jour·​nal | \ˈjər-nᵊl \

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

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