punctuate

verb
punc·​tu·​ate | \ ˈpəŋk-chə-ˌwāt How to pronounce punctuate (audio) \
punctuated; punctuating

Definition of punctuate

transitive verb

1 : to mark or divide (written matter) with punctuation marks
2 : to break into or interrupt at intervals the steady click of her needles punctuated the silence— Edith Wharton

intransitive verb

: to use punctuation marks

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Other Words from punctuate

punctuator \ ˈpəŋk-​chə-​ˌwā-​tər How to pronounce punctuator (audio) \ noun

Examples of punctuate in a Sentence

Do you know how to punctuate a sentence correctly? punctuated each and every word of his denial with a pound of his fist on the table

Recent Examples on the Web

Although council members applauded the work of outreach workers and others trying to tackle the crisis, the lengthy meeting was also punctuated with moments of frustration. Benjamin Oreskes, latimes.com, "L.A. is getting millions in state money for homelessness. Now L.A. politicians want more," 26 June 2019 The elegant, restrained installation of these historic treasures is punctuated at intervals by contemporary works that are not only surprising, but also attest to the relevance of animal subject matter to modern-day Japanese artists. Karen Wilkin, WSJ, "‘The Life of Animals in Japanese Art’ Review: From Adorable to Fearsome," 25 June 2019 The run was jumpstarted by back-to-back Kawhi threes to begin the half and it was punctuated by 11 points from Leonard in the final 3:17 of the quarter. Andrew Sharp, SI.com, "Did Kawhi Leonard Just Close the Door on the Warriors?," 8 June 2019 Suddenly, the trees have leafed out completely and the quiet suburban landscape is punctuated by a crystal blue sky. Randy Blaser, chicagotribune.com, "Column: Summer is here. You better enjoy it while it lasts.," 6 June 2019 Hummingbirds could lead to leaps forward for search-and-rescue drones, commercial filming robots, military use, and any other flying venture that is punctuated by quick, unexpected stops and starts. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "Hummingbird Robots 1, Drones 0," 13 May 2019 The ivory and navy blue interior theme looks beautifully nautical and is punctuated by shiny gold detailing. Drew Dorian, Car and Driver, "Thought the Lexus LM Was the Most Luxe Minivan? Buick Just Said "Not Today" with GL8 Concept," 10 May 2019 Advertising The day was punctuated by more news that Trump was likely to welcome: As Trump’s meetings with Netanyahu were winding down, word surfaced that Avenatti had been arrested. Catherine Lucey, The Seattle Times, "Victory lap and accolades: Trump has, perhaps, best day ever," 26 Mar. 2019 Interpretation is complicated by the fact that a persistent flow of draining meltwater could also have been punctuated by the sudden emptying of a massive lake called Glacial Lake Agassiz. Scott K. Johnson, Ars Technica, "Elusive trigger for cooling 13,000 years ago might have been found," 11 July 2018

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

circa 1766, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for punctuate

Medieval Latin punctuatus, past participle of punctuare to point, provide with punctuation marks, from Latin punctus point

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Statistics for punctuate

Last Updated

13 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for punctuate

The first known use of punctuate was circa 1766

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More Definitions for punctuate

punctuate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of punctuate

: to use punctuation marks in (a piece of writing)
: to interrupt or occur in (something) repeatedly

punctuate

verb
punc·​tu·​ate | \ ˈpəŋk-chə-ˌwāt How to pronounce punctuate (audio) \
punctuated; punctuating

Kids Definition of punctuate

1 : to add punctuation marks to writing
2 : to interrupt or occur in repeatedly His speech was punctuated by applause.
3 : to give emphasis to She kept talking, using her hands sometimes to punctuate a point.— Brian Selznick, Wonderstruck

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Comments on punctuate

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