over·​ride | \ ˌō-vər-ˈrīd How to pronounce override (audio) , ˌō-və- \
overrode\ ˌō-​vər-​ˈrōd How to pronounce override (audio) , ˌō-​və-​ \; overridden\ ˌō-​vər-​ˈri-​dᵊn How to pronounce override (audio) , ˌō-​və-​ \; overriding\ ˌō-​vər-​ˈrī-​diŋ How to pronounce override (audio) , ˌō-​və-​ \

Definition of override

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to ride over or across : trample overrode the thin line of defenders
2 : to ride (an animal, such as a horse) too much or too hard
3a : to prevail over : dominate panic overrode everything else— Marcia Davenport
b : to set aside : annul override a veto the rights of the individual were being flagrantly overridden— C. L. Jones
c : to neutralize the action of (something, such as an automatic control) You must enter a code to override the alarm.
4 : to extend or pass over especially : overlap Huge waves override the beach.


over·​ride | \ ˈō-vər-ˌrīd How to pronounce override (audio) , ˈō-və- \

Definition of override (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a commission paid to managerial personnel on sales made by subordinates
3 : a device or system used to override a control
4 : an act or an instance of overriding

Examples of override in a Sentence

Verb Congress overrode the President's veto. These new rules override the old ones. Don't let anger override common sense. You must enter a code to override the alarm. She overrode the default settings on her computer.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb This time peril comes not just in the form of harrowing machines, but also a dangerous rival tribe that can likewise override mechanical beasts. Jacob Siegal, BGR, 11 Jan. 2022 Boeing had apparently designed an airplane that would sometimes leave pilots fighting desperately against software that could override their instructions and nosedive their jets into the ground. Washington Post, 17 Dec. 2021 Republicans do not have enough votes in the Legislature to override the vetoes. From Usa Today Network And Wire Reports, USA TODAY, 6 Dec. 2021 The rezoning ordinance failed to receive enough votes from the Common Council to override the petition. Evan Casey, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 16 Nov. 2021 Republicans lawmakers have enough votes to override either veto. Dave Boucher, Detroit Free Press, 11 Sep. 2021 PiS, according to analysts, could cobble together enough votes to override the Senat if the bill returns to the lower chamber. Dominique Soguel, The Christian Science Monitor, 8 Sep. 2021 Each time, the Assembly voted to override those vetoes, keeping its changes in place. Emily Goodykoontz, Anchorage Daily News, 15 Dec. 2021 Following a $200 million effort by Uber, Lyft, DoorDash, and other on-demand delivery companies, residents in the US state voted to override a bill that would have forced gig economy companies to classify their workers as employees. Morgan Meaker, Wired, 10 Dec. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun By design, a veto override is hard to pull off and requires a two-thirds vote of each house. John Myers, Los Angeles Times, 15 Oct. 2021 All four bills passed with bipartisan support in the Michigan House and some received enough Democratic support to secure the votes needed for a veto override. Clara Hendrickson, Detroit Free Press, 4 Oct. 2021 But the governor's veto was overridden by the Senate in a 20-10 vote, with Democrats getting just enough votes to clear the two-thirds majority needed for a veto override. Michael Lee, Fox News, 28 Sep. 2021 Trump, in the waning days of his presidency, could be heading toward his first veto override, in part due to rare Republican resistance in Congress. Tom Benning, Dallas News, 8 Dec. 2020 Prince did not appear to have enough council support to prevent an override. Carrie Napoleon, chicagotribune.com, 2 Dec. 2021 The House, which voted 88 to 50 to pass the bill in April, was set to take up the veto override on Tuesday evening. Washington Post, 7 Dec. 2021 There is no override that allows a citizen’s record to exist alone without a family to be connected to. Rida Qadri, Wired, 11 Nov. 2021 Those steps would automatically trigger a vote in Congress on whether to block Biden’s override — one that the president is likely to win but that would create an unwelcome diversion for the White House, not to mention a platform for Cruz. BostonGlobe.com, 2 Oct. 2021

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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1931, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of override was before the 12th century

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Last Updated

14 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Override.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/override. Accessed 16 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for override



English Language Learners Definition of override

: to make (something) no longer valid
: to have more importance or influence than (something)
: to stop an action that is done automatically by using a special command


over·​ride | \ ˌō-vər-ˈrīd How to pronounce override (audio) \
overrode\ -​ˈrōd \; overridden\ -​ˈri-​dᵊn \; overriding\ -​ˈrī-​diŋ \

Kids Definition of override

: to push aside as less important Don't let anger override sense.


transitive verb
over·​ride | \ ˌō-vər-ˈrīd How to pronounce override (audio) \
overrode\ -​ˈrōd How to pronounce override (audio) \; overridden\ -​ˈrid-​ᵊn How to pronounce override (audio) \; overriding

Legal Definition of override

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to prevail or take precedence over if, as is often the case, federal constitutional principles override state statutory or common law— H. P. Wilkins
2 : to set aside by virtue of superior authority overrode the jury's sentencing recommendation especially : annul sense 2 override a veto with the required majority


over·​ride | \ ˈō-vər-ˌrīd How to pronounce override (audio) \

Legal Definition of override (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a commission paid to managerial personnel on sales made by subordinates

called also override commission

2 : royalty
3 : an act or instance of overriding a legislative override


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