peri·​scope ˈper-ə-ˌskōp How to pronounce periscope (audio)
: a tubular optical instrument containing lenses and mirrors by which an observer obtains an otherwise obstructed field of view

Illustration of periscope

Illustration of periscope

Examples of periscope in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web For example, the Huawei P30 Pro, which went on sale in March 2019, was among the first to reach the market with a periscope camera design. Eric Zeman, PCMAG, 13 Sep. 2023 Next year, the iPhone 15 Ultra might feature a periscope zoom camera that might further complicate the rear camera design. Chris Smith, BGR, 28 Dec. 2022 This technology isn't new—Samsung famously has had a 10X optical zoom camera in its Galaxy Ultra phones for a few years, and last year's Google Pixel 7 Pro uses a 5X optical periscope zoom camera. Julian Chokkattu, WIRED, 12 Sep. 2023 This may include a rear-facing periscope lens, which allows for more optical zoom, and a titanium casing to make the device up to 15% lighter and thinner. Samantha Murphy Kelly, CNN, 10 Sep. 2023 Equally odd is Kuo says Apple will introduce periscope lenses for both the iPhone 16 Pro and Pro Max in 2024, making this a single-generation feature difference. Gordon Kelly, Forbes, 1 Apr. 2023 Those shifts included helping to navigate the submarine, manning the periscope, and monitoring the sonar. IEEE Spectrum, 26 July 2023 Yoon Suk-Yeol peer through the USS Kentucky’s periscope. Sébastien Roblin, Popular Mechanics, 19 July 2023 For comparison, last year’s phone had similar rear cameras but a slightly higher resolution 64-megapixel periscope telephoto. Jon Porter, The Verge, 27 Feb. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'periscope.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


International Scientific Vocabulary

First Known Use

1879, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of periscope was in 1879

Dictionary Entries Near periscope

Cite this Entry

“Periscope.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Sep. 2023.

Kids Definition


peri·​scope ˈper-ə-ˌskōp How to pronounce periscope (audio)
: an instrument containing lenses and mirrors by which an observer (as on a submerged submarine) can get a view that would otherwise be blocked

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