pre·​cinct | \ ˈprē-ˌsiŋ(k)t How to pronounce precinct (audio) \

Definition of precinct

1 : a part of a territory with definite bounds or functions often established for administrative purposes : district: such as
a : a subdivision of a county, town, city, or ward for election purposes
b : a division of a city for police control
2a : an enclosure bounded by the walls of a building often used in plural
b : a sphere of thought, action, or influence often used in plural
3a precincts plural : the region immediately surrounding a place : environs
4 : boundary often used in plurala ruined tower within the precincts of the squire's grounds— T. L. Peacock

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Examples of precinct in a Sentence

a sexist attitude that was pretty common in the precincts of the automobile business
Recent Examples on the Web To win delegates, a candidate must meet the viability threshold in the precinct caucuses. Grace Segers, Alexander Tin, CBS News, "How do the Nevada caucuses work?," 14 Feb. 2020 With most precincts reporting, Trump had nearly 86 percent of the vote, and former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld had 9 percent. Harold Maass, TheWeek, "February 12, 2020," 12 Feb. 2020 According to the New York Times, 261 of 301 precincts (87% of results) have reported as of early Wednesday morning. Lucy Diavolo, Teen Vogue, "New Hampshire Primary Results: Bernie Sanders Wins, Pete Buttigieg Takes Second," 12 Feb. 2020 The New Hampshire primary came a week after the muddled Iowa caucus results, and a Wednesday agreement to recanvass requests for certain precincts. Jeanine Santucci, USA TODAY, "Trump says Bernie Sanders is the Democratic frontrunner after strong showings in Iowa, New Hampshire," 12 Feb. 2020 The plan was for that data to be transmitted to a voter’s home precinct for the Feb. 22 in-person caucuses., "Nevada Democrats lay out new plan for caucuses, trying to alleviate growing concerns about the process," 11 Feb. 2020 The second officer was shot Sunday morning when a gunman entered a precinct headquarters in the Bronx and opened fire with a 9 mm handgun, Police Commissioner Dermot Shea said. NBC News, "2 New York officers shot and wounded within hours in 'assassination' attempts," 9 Feb. 2020 The app’s failure prevented some precinct workers from transmitting local election results to the state’s Democratic Party. Jack Gillum, ProPublica, "The Iowa Caucuses App Had Another Problem: It Could Have Been Hacked," 5 Feb. 2020 The two sets of figures covered only sixty-two per cent of Iowa’s precincts, however, and risked adding to the confusion. John Cassidy, The New Yorker, "Buttigieg and Sanders Both Have Reasons To Celebrate the Partial Iowa Results," 5 Feb. 2020

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for precinct

Middle English, from Medieval Latin praecinctum, from Latin, neuter of praecinctus, past participle of praecingere to gird, encircle, from prae- pre- + cingere to gird — more at cincture

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Time Traveler for precinct

Time Traveler

The first known use of precinct was in the 15th century

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Statistics for precinct

Last Updated

18 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Precinct.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Feb. 2020.

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How to pronounce precinct (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of precinct

US : any one of the sections that a town or city is divided into when people vote in an election
: any one of the sections that a city is divided into for organizing the city's police forces
: a police station of a precinct


pre·​cinct | \ ˈprē-ˌsiŋkt How to pronounce precinct (audio) \

Kids Definition of precinct

1 : any of the sections into which a town or city is divided for a particular purpose (as voting or police protection)
2 : a surrounding or enclosed area Stay within school precincts.

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More from Merriam-Webster on precinct

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for precinct

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with precinct

Spanish Central: Translation of precinct

Nglish: Translation of precinct for Spanish Speakers

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