mis·​read | \ ˌmis-ˈrēd How to pronounce misread (audio) \
misread\ ˌmis-​ˈred How to pronounce misread (audio) \; misreading\ ˌmis-​ˈrē-​diŋ How to pronounce misread (audio) \

Definition of misread

transitive verb

1 : to read incorrectly
2 : to misinterpret in or as if in reading totally misread the lesson of history— Christopher Hollis

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Examples of misread in a Sentence

I guess I misread the instructions. They have misread the lessons of the past. Politicians may have misread the mood of the public. I badly misread the situation.
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Recent Examples on the Web Studies have shown teachers are as biased against Black people as American society is broadly, and that school staff are likely to misread the expressions of Black children, seeing anger where there is none. Levi Pulkkinen, USA TODAY, "Suspensions, handcuffs, jail — middle school discipline falls heavily on vulnerable kids," 8 Apr. 2021 Prince Philip misread the public antipathy to the royal family in the days after Diana’s death in a car crash in 1997. Washington Post, "Prince Philip, royal consort to Queen Elizabeth, dies at 99," 9 Apr. 2021 The Royals had a bunt hit in the opener, too, when rookie pitcher Kyle Cody misread his responsibility. Evan Grant, Dallas News, "The Rangers have allowed 25 runs in their first two games, but manager Chris Woodward isn’t panicking," 3 Apr. 2021 Castellanos lined out to left and Stephenson misread the defensive alignment, believing the ball was going to drop for a hit. Bobby Nightengale, The Enquirer, "'We’ll be where we need to be': Reds not panicking after Opening Day struggles," 2 Apr. 2021 The Obama-era Federal Trade Commission reportedly misread evidence when investigating Google a decade ago, making incorrect assumptions about the future of the internet that allowed the search giant to dominate its rivals. Nihal Krishan, Washington Examiner, "Federal regulators went easy on Google during Obama era, allowing it to become a monopoly: Report," 16 Mar. 2021 In a piece in The Arizona Republic published Monday, Jessica Taylor -- the Senate editor for the nonpartisan Cook Political Report -- asserted that a candidate like Biggs would misread this new Arizona electorate. Julia Musto, Fox News, "Arizona Rep. Andy Biggs considering Senate run against Democrat Mark Kelly," 3 Mar. 2021 More broadly, experts say, the Biden Administration has fundamentally misread the kingdom—and may be making a bad strategic bet. Robin Wright, The New Yorker, "Biden Betrayed His Promise to Defend Human Rights and Jamal Khashoggi," 1 Mar. 2021 In this case, the Trump team also selectively misread the provision in question. Matt Ford, The New Republic, "Trump’s Final Defense of His Presidency May Be His Most Deranged," 8 Feb. 2021

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

1658, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for misread

Time Traveler

The first known use of misread was in 1658

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Statistics for misread

Last Updated

1 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Misread.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/misread. Accessed 9 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for misread



English Language Learners Definition of misread

: to read (something) incorrectly
: to understand (something) incorrectly


mis·​read | \ mis-ˈrēd How to pronounce misread (audio) \
misread\ -​ˈred \; misreading\ -​ˈrēd-​ing \

Kids Definition of misread

1 : to incorrectly pronounce or understand something written
2 : misunderstand He misread the emotion on her face.

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