pho·​to | \ ˈfō-(ˌ)tō How to pronounce photo (audio) \
plural photos

Definition of photo

 (Entry 1 of 3)


photoed; photoing; photos

Definition of photo (Entry 2 of 3)



Definition of photo (Entry 3 of 3)

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Synonyms for photo

Synonyms: Noun

photograph, pic, print, shot, snap, snapshot

Synonyms: Verb

mug, photograph, shoot, snap

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Examples of photo in a Sentence


We gave them a framed family photo for their anniversary. You aren't allowed to take photos inside the theater.


photoed the historic mansion for a decorating magazine
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Several of Chatman’s photos depict churches that appear to be struggling to survive. Mike Giuliano,, "Diverse photographic landscapes at Howard Community College," 20 June 2019 Audriana captioned a touching video collage that features a plethora of photos with her reality TV family. Joelle Goldstein,, "Teresa Giudice Shares Her Anguish About Husband Joe 'Missing Out on So Much' If He Gets Deported," 20 June 2019 One of Terrell's previous projects was a striking series of photos of African American men wearing flowers as wreaths and decorative objects. Julie Hinds, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit artists get 'life-changing' $25k grants through Kresge Arts," 19 June 2019 The new set of color photos released on Monday, some of them taken from a U.S. Navy surveillance helicopter, appear to show Iranian navy personnel and close-up markings of the damage. Tessa Berenson, Time, "Exclusive: President Trump Calls Alleged Iranian Attack on Oil Tankers 'Very Minor'," 19 June 2019 In one particularly striking JEB photo, taken in 1980, the lesbian feminist poet and scholar Audre Lorde reads at a podium. Hannah Giorgis, The Atlantic, "The Lesbian ‘Propagandist’ Who Documented a Movement," 19 June 2019 Timothy Parlatore, Gallagher’s lead defense attorney, several times has said there was no blood in the photos of the scene. San Diego Union-Tribune, "SEAL’s former teammates say he shot Iraqi civilian, stabbed wounded detainee," 19 June 2019 Sneaker Politics released a preview of the sneakers Monday on Instagram in a series of photos complete with mounds of powdered sugar. Jennifer Larino,, "This French Quarter shop is releasing a Cafe du Monde-inspired sneaker," 18 June 2019 In fact one of two photos Schliepp collected while working in NASCAR is him with Allison. Dave Kallmann, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Fifty years ago, his racing dream was snatched away. Sunday at the Milwaukee Mile it finally came true.," 17 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

That’s not to say that minimalism hasn’t made a memorable impact: A late-’90s Kate Moss needed only a swipe of red lipstick (and Johnny Depp on her arm) to look photo-ready. Calin Van Paris, Vogue, "21 Iconic Cannes Beauty Moments: From Kate Moss to Kristen Stewart," 10 May 2019 But this year's changes–on iOS especially–are expected to be less dramatic than last year's update, which included a redesigned control center, more photo effects, enhanced discovery in the App Store, driving safety features, and of course, ARKit. Lauren Goode, WIRED, "What to Expect from Apple’s Annual Software Conference," 1 June 2018 NOPD Second District Detective Jerry Baldwin asked the victim to identify the shooter from a six-person photo line-up that included Williams' picture. Marie Simoneaux,, "Gambling argument sparked Gert Town shooting, police say," 3 Oct. 2017 Some attendees came to see the latest in tattoo designs, be it photo-realistic portraiture or fantastical scenes straight out of a sci-fi movie. Charles Passy, WSJ, "Tattoo Artists Make Their Mark at Expo," 16 July 2017 Police said officers were given the name and number for the party's photographer, which led to Butler, and put his photo in a six-person photo lineup. Emily Lane,, "Argument at birthday party in Desire Area ends with man stabbed in neck: warrant," 11 Aug. 2017 That included a link to what the sender claimed was photo evidence of their affair. Nicole Perlroth, New York Times, "Spyware’s Odd Targets: Backers of Mexico’s Soda Tax," 11 Feb. 2017 Photo transitions happen on the beat, to give it a bit more pop. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "Hands on with Microsoft's Story Remix, the new tool to make your photos pop," 15 May 2017 Photo gallery of Longmont Trojans vs. Thompson Valley Eagles at Longmont High School on April 15, 2017, in Longmont, Colorado. Justin Edmonds, The Denver Post, "PHOTOS: Thompson Valley defeats Longmont in Northern League baseball," 15 Apr. 2017

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


1860, in the meaning defined above


1868, in the meaning defined above


1878, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for photo

Last Updated

24 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for photo

The first known use of photo was in 1860

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More Definitions for photo


pho·​to | \ ˈfō-tō How to pronounce photo (audio) \
plural photos

Kids Definition of photo

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More from Merriam-Webster on photo

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for photo

Spanish Central: Translation of photo

Nglish: Translation of photo for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of photo for Arabic Speakers

Comments on photo

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


showing courage and determination

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