on·line | \ˈȯn-ˈlīn, ˈän-ˈlīn \

Definition of online 

: connected to, served by, or available through a system and especially a computer or telecommunications system (such as the Internet) an online database also : done while connected to such a system online shopping online games online searching

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Other Words from online

online adverb

Examples of online in a Sentence

The city libraries are all online. He likes to engage in online chats.

Recent Examples on the Web

The limited offer, which expires July 15, gives pass holders first dibs at online reservations for the rest of the year, according to SeaWorld’s website. Gabrielle Russon,, "SeaWorld Orlando offers promotion for first Infinity Falls access," 5 July 2018 Make free online reservations as soon as a movie is available. Dalvin Brown And Taylor Jade Powell, USA TODAY, "AMC launches MoviePass-type service called Stubs A-List," 26 June 2018 Buy tickets to 4 Eat and Drink’s dinner here and make online reservations for Bistro on Main’s dinner here. Leeanne Griffin,, "CT Restaurants To Host Dinners In Tribute To Anthony Bourdain," 25 June 2018 The two men knew each other from working together at Expedia, the online travel site that Khosrowshahi previously led as chief executive. Mike Isaac,, "At Uber, new questions arise about executive behavior," 14 July 2018 United We Dream currently has over 400,000 members and an online reach of over 4 million and growing; meanwhile, Jiménez noted, polls show that most Americans support DACA and oppose family separations at the border. Abigail Simon, Time, "'Yes, We Can Change the World.' How One Activist is Fighting for Immigration Reform," 13 July 2018 With the threat of high school looming, Kayla decides to take some of that online confidence IRL. Samantha Leach, Glamour, "Eighth Grade Is Awkward, Heartbreaking, and Beautiful—Just Like Your Middle School Experience," 13 July 2018 Democrats are often thought to be tech-savvy, because the Obama campaigns of 2008 and 2012 were celebrated for their online touch and because much of Silicon Valley backs the party’s candidates. New York Times, "4,500 Tech Workers, 1 Mission: Get Democrats Elected," 13 July 2018 Temple’s Fox School of Business held the top spot in a U.S. News and World Report list of over 200 online master’s in business administration programs for four consecutive years, including the 2018 rankings. Kelsey Gee, WSJ, "Temple University Fires a Dean Over Falsified M.B.A. Rankings Data," 13 July 2018

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

1950, in the meaning defined above

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Dictionary Entries near online



on limits




on loan

Statistics for online

Last Updated

8 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for online

The first known use of online was in 1950

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English Language Learners Definition of online

: connected to a computer, a computer network, or the Internet

: done over the Internet

on·line | \ˈȯn-ˌlīn, ˈän-\

Kids Definition of online

: connected to, directly controlled by, or available through a computer system an online database working online

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Comments on online

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


one that holds something together

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