place·​hold·​er | \ˈplās-ˌhōl-dər \

Definition of placeholder 

: a symbol in a mathematical or logical expression that may be replaced by the name of any element of a set

Examples of placeholder in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

When the Model 3 debuted in 2016, many people figured its Neo-from-The-Matrix front end was a placeholder. Andrew Moseman, Popular Mechanics, "The 10 Hardest Things To Get Used to on the Tesla Model 3," 10 Oct. 2018 The quartet also includes a bipartisan bill that couples a path to citizenship for the young immigrants with border-security measures, and a placeholder that House Speaker Paul Ryan (R., Wis.) can fill with legislation of his choosing. Kristina Peterson, WSJ, "Immigration Bills Split House Republicans," 16 May 2018 Sports betting bills have been filed in some 20 states, ranging from ones detailing exactly how the sports betting would work, to mere placeholders that would allow for specific language once the case is decided. Elaine S. Povich,, "How states are gambling on N.J.'s sports betting suit," 31 Jan. 2018 What Rolling Stone said: The 21st Century’s greatest riff came to Jack White during a soundcheck in Melbourne, Australia, and the title was a placeholder. Tanya Wildt, Detroit Free Press, "100 greatest songs of the century: 2 Detroit acts make list," 2 July 2018 SoulCycle initially filed in 2015, hoping to raise at least $100 million (a placeholder figure) to pay off debt and open new studios. Polina Marinova, Fortune, "Term Sheet -- Tuesday, May 29," 29 May 2018 But Mayor Dave Nold said original estimates to renovate the building were closer to $12 million, despite that original $10 million placeholder figure. Evan Frank, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "New Oconomowoc police station may cost $2 million more than originally anticipated," 11 July 2018 Southgate was initially seen merely as a placeholder. Jonathan Wilson,, "Gareth Southgate Makes Own Luck in Guiding England to World Cup Semifinals," 10 July 2018 Instead, the party chose a placeholder candidate who, officials said, would vacate his place before the November election. Joseph De Avila, WSJ, "Race for N.Y. Attorney General Heats Up This Week," 20 May 2018

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

1928, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

12 Nov 2018

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The first known use of placeholder was in 1928

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place·​hold·​er | \ˈplās-ˌhōl-dər \

Kids Definition of placeholder

: a symbol (as x, Δ, *) used in mathematics in the place of a numeral

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Britannica English: Translation of placeholder for Arabic Speakers

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