over·​write | \ ˌō-vər-ˈrīt How to pronounce overwrite (audio) , ˌō-və-\
overwrote\ ˌō-​vər-​ˈrōt How to pronounce overwrote (audio) , ˌō-​və-​ \; overwritten\ ˌō-​vər-​ˈri-​tᵊn How to pronounce overwritten (audio) , ˌō-​və-​ \; overwriting\ ˌō-​vər-​ˈrī-​tiŋ How to pronounce overwriting (audio) , ˌō-​və-​ \

Definition of overwrite

transitive verb

1 : to write over the surface of
2 : to write in inflated or overly elaborate style

intransitive verb

: to write too much or in an overly elaborate style

Examples of overwrite in a Sentence

The author has a tendency to overwrite.

Recent Examples on the Web

The new bug will be harder to exploit in that way, as the ability to delete files is less useful than the ability to overwrite files. Peter Bright, Ars Technica, "Another Windows 0-day flaw has been published on Twitter," 24 Oct. 2018 But Microsoft also advised customers to use the affected devices as little as possible, to avoid overwriting the lost data and losing it forever. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "Microsoft restarts Windows 10 October 2018 Update, blaming data loss on misdirected folders," 9 Oct. 2018 By overwriting a file that's subsequently loaded into a privileged SYSTEM-level process, the attacker can run code of their choosing with SYSTEM privileges. Peter Bright, Ars Technica, "Microsoft obliquely acknowledges Windows 0-day bug published on Twitter," 29 Aug. 2018 But going the iCloud route might overwrite your previous iOS 11 backup with a newer iOS 12 one. Chris Welch, The Verge, "iOS 12 is coming on September 17th, but here’s how to install it today," 12 Sep. 2018 By the time Egyptian authorities recovered the video, more than a week after it had been requested by the Italians, most of it had been erased, overwritten by later surveillance recordings. Declan Walsh, New York Times, "Egypt Hands Over Video in Murder Case — Damaged and 2 Years Late," 1 June 2018 His ebullient Schützenstrasse Quarter complex, built on the site of the former death strip, completely overwrites the area’s deadly history. Carolina A. Miranda, latimes.com, "What the dismantling of the Berlin Wall can teach us as Trump tries to build his wall," 21 June 2018 Denzel Washington is better positioned than any other living actor to overwrite Spacey’s performance. Constance Grady, Vox, "Your guide to the 17 most important nominees at this year’s Tonys," 7 June 2018 Some versions of stage 2 also possess a self-destruct capability that works by overwriting a critical portion of the device firmware and then rebooting, a process that renders the device unusable. Dan Goodin, Ars Technica, "Hackers infect 500,000 consumer routers all over the world with malware," 23 May 2018

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

1820, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

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Time Traveler for overwrite

The first known use of overwrite was in 1820

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English Language Learners Definition of overwrite

: to replace information in (a computer file) with new information
: to write in a way that is too detailed or complicated

More from Merriam-Webster on overwrite

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with overwrite

Nglish: Translation of overwrite for Spanish Speakers

Comments on overwrite

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something valued as if it were money

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