over·​sight | \ ˈō-vər-ˌsīt How to pronounce oversight (audio) \

Definition of oversight

1a : watchful and responsible care you to whom oversight of the University is entrusted— N. M. Pusey
b : regulatory supervision congressional oversight The new manager was given oversight of the project.
2 : an inadvertent omission or error whether by oversight or intention— G. B. Shaw The error was a simple oversight.

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Examples of oversight in a Sentence

The fact that you didn't get an invitation is surely just an oversight. The error was a simple oversight. The new manager was given oversight of the project.
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Recent Examples on the Web But the village, one of six in Gansu visited by The New York Times without government oversight, is also a testament to the considerable cost of the ruling Communist Party’s approach to poverty alleviation. Keith Bradsher, New York Times, "Jobs, Houses and Cows: China’s Costly Drive to Erase Extreme Poverty," 31 Dec. 2020 Through internal licensing, however, ICE could use them for indefinite detention, without state oversight. Camilo Montoya-galvez, CBS News, "Court blocks Trump administration bid to detain migrant families indefinitely," 30 Dec. 2020 Without oversight, some people cannot resist larceny urges. Oline H. Cogdill, sun-sentinel.com, "Book review: A librarian as P.I. from an author to watch," 28 Dec. 2020 Without appropriate oversight these companies could easily repeat the mistakes that put them in conservatorship in the first place. WSJ, "The Continuing Saga of Fannie and Freddie," 20 Dec. 2020 But with or without his oversight, his novels have been keeping movie audiences reliably rapt for decades. Ted Scheinman, Smithsonian Magazine, "John le Carré, Dead at 89, Defined the Modern Spy Novel," 14 Dec. 2020 Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube all played significant roles in our election security, without government oversight. Fortune, "A cybersecurity agenda for the Biden administration," 9 Dec. 2020 Because the private facility can treat radioactive waste without oversight from the Department of Energy or labor groups, accidents have gone unnoticed. Mark Olalde, USA TODAY, "Climate Point: Biden to anoint a climate envoy, and GM abandons Trump," 26 Nov. 2020 Last month, the central bank banned local lenders from setting up a system of their own without government oversight. Nicolle Yapur, Bloomberg.com, "Venezuela to Discuss Dollarization Plan With Local Banks," 16 Nov. 2020

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Time Traveler for oversight

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for oversight

Last Updated

14 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Oversight.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/oversight. Accessed 23 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for oversight


How to pronounce oversight (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of oversight

: a mistake made because someone forgets or fails to notice something
: the act or job of directing work that is being done


over·​sight | \ ˈō-vər-ˌsīt How to pronounce oversight (audio) \

Kids Definition of oversight

1 : the act or duty of overseeing : watchful care He was assigned oversight of the project.
2 : an error or something forgotten through carelessness or haste It was surely an oversight that you weren't invited.

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Comments on oversight

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