post·​mark | \ ˈpōs(t)-ˌmärk How to pronounce postmark (audio) \

Definition of postmark

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: an official postal marking on a piece of mail specifically : a mark showing the post office and date of mailing


postmarked; postmarking; postmarks

Definition of postmark (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to put a postmark on

Examples of postmark in a Sentence

Verb The package was postmarked 13 February.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The court agreed with Reed’s argument, granting a preliminary injunction that prevented the state from accepting or counting ballots without a postmark. Michael Lee, Washington Examiner, "Judge rules Virginia's late election law changes for mail-in ballots were illegal," 27 Jan. 2021 The state is not allowing votes to be counted that have a Nov. 3 postmark. Dan Harrie, The Salt Lake Tribune, "What you need to know about voting in Utah on Election Day," 3 Nov. 2020 Disputes over signatures, postmark dates and voter errors have been common for years – and often go unnoticed when races are decided by in-person votes. John Fritze, USA TODAY, "Return to sender: Trump's strategy on mail ballots divides party ahead of GOP convention," 17 May 2016 Court rulings in both states say that mail-in ballots received after Election Day won’t be counted regardless of the postmark date. Fox News, "Federal judge orders USPS to take 'extraordinary measures' to deliver mail-in ballots on time," 1 Nov. 2020 About 160 ballots were erroneously returned to a local election office; another 390 had issues with the postmark, which led to confusion about whether they could be counted, the inspector general found. Luke Broadwater, Star Tribune, "1 million primary ballots were mailed late to voters, audit finds, stoking new concerns," 2 Sep. 2020 Of the 9,383 late-arriving ballots, only 655 lack a legible postmark — accounting for less than 1 percent of Trump’s deficit (and about one-hundredth of a percent of the statewide vote). Andrew C. Mccarthy, National Review, "Checkmate in Pennsylvania for the Trump Campaign," 18 Nov. 2020 Ballots received after that time — no matter the postmark — are not counted. Detroit Free Press, "Michigan was a hotbed for election-related misinformation: Here's 16 key fact checks," 10 Nov. 2020 Commonwealth officials also ordered that ballots arriving before Friday evening should be accepted but segregated if they are either postmarked by Election Day or lack a postmark. Fox News, "Lindsey Graham: Democrats 'could give a damn' about election law and precedent, so long as Trump lost," 10 Nov. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The Postal Service says its policy is to postmark all ballots mailed by voters, whether they are prepaid by election officials or mailed with a stamp affixed by the voter. A Wall Street Journal Roundup, WSJ, "Election 2020 Voting Questions: You Asked, We Answered," 21 Oct. 2020 Voters had until Monday to postmark their ballots and mail them in. Andrew J. Tobias, cleveland, "Ohio shatters state record with 3.4 million early votes, but 243,000 mail ballots are still unreturned," 2 Nov. 2020 Part of the issue is that while the Postal Service usually doesn’t postmark prepaid envelopes, ballots are an exception. Jess Bravin, WSJ, "Supreme Court Allows Extension for Mail-In Ballots in Pennsylvania," 20 Oct. 2020 Employees are authorized to sort and postmark ballots at local post offices rather than sending them to regional processing plants, the memo states. Washington Post, "Amid USPS delays, election experts and campaigns weigh in: Don’t mail your ballot," 26 Oct. 2020 Eugene Gaytan, following the advice of election administrators and voting rights activists, last week asked an Oak Cliff post office clerk to postmark his mail-in ballot in front of him. James Barragán, Dallas News, "Postal Service assures all ballots will be postmarked, after one Dallas voter was denied," 21 Oct. 2020 The Postal Service has instructed its employees around the country to postmark every ballot, regardless of whether they are prepaid or mailed with a stamp placed by a voter, said spokeswoman Kimberly Frum. Jess Bravin, WSJ, "Supreme Court Allows Extension for Mail-In Ballots in Pennsylvania," 20 Oct. 2020 Does a ballot count if the post office does not postmark it at all? Dionne Searcey, New York Times, "An Election That Could Hinge on the Voting Process Itself," 25 Sep. 2020 And the last day voters can hand-deliver or postmark an absentee ballot is Nov. 2. Ben Flanagan |, al, "Outbreak Alabama: How will you vote during the pandemic?," 19 Oct. 2020

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


1678, in the meaning defined above


1716, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for postmark

Time Traveler

The first known use of postmark was in 1678

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Last Updated

12 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Postmark.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Mar. 2021.

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More Definitions for postmark



English Language Learners Definition of postmark

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a mark placed over the stamp on a piece of mail that shows when the mail was sent and where it was sent from and that makes it impossible to use the stamp again



English Language Learners Definition of postmark (Entry 2 of 2)

: to put a postmark on (something)


post·​mark | \ ˈpōst-ˌmärk How to pronounce postmark (audio) \

Kids Definition of postmark

: a mark put on a piece of mail especially for canceling the postage stamp

More from Merriam-Webster on postmark

Nglish: Translation of postmark for Spanish Speakers

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