queue

noun
\ ˈkyü How to pronounce queue (audio) \

Definition of queue

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a braid of hair usually worn hanging at the back of the head
2 : a waiting line especially of persons or vehicles
3a : a sequence of messages or jobs held in temporary storage awaiting transmission or processing
b : a data structure that consists of a list of records such that records are added at one end and removed from the other

queue

verb
\ ˈkyü How to pronounce queue (audio) \
queued; queuing or queueing

Definition of queue (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to arrange or form in a queue (see queue entry 1)

intransitive verb

: to line up or wait in a queue often used with up

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Other Words from queue

Verb

queuer noun

Synonyms for queue

Synonyms: Noun

column, cue, file, line, range, string, train

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Is it que, queue, or q?

One of our persistent—and more puzzling—lookups is for the word que, which is entered in our dictionary (capitalized) as an abbreviation for Quebec. Qué is also a Spanish word that means “what.” That is not, however, the word that many people are looking for when they look up que in our dictionary. Que is homophonous with a number of other words, most of which have wildly different spellings and meanings. One of the words that people are looking for when they look up que is queue, a word that means “line” (as in, “We waited in the ticket queue.”) Sometimes people are looking for the homonym cue, or “a signal to start or do something” (“The lights just went out—that’s my cue to start the movie.”). Very occasionally, people look up que for coup, a word that refers to a violent and sudden overthrow or takeover of a government (“reports on the latest coup attempt”). And if you’re looking for the phonetic spelling of the letter q, try again: that’s cue.

Examples of queue in a Sentence

Noun

The Tiong Bahru hawker center in Singapore might well be my favorite place in the world to start the day. I remember vividly my first visit: I arrived jetlagged and hungry at seven in the morning to find vendors stir-frying greens in gigantic woks, sending up whooshes of smoke fragrant with garlic. Long queues of businessmen and construction workers and families who likely lived in the nearby housing projects snaked from the cash register of each stall. — James Oseland, Saveur, October 2008 Around the time the Soviet Union ceased to exist, I was waiting in the entry queue at Fiumicino Airport in Rome when I noticed a party of several dozen young Russian girls being fast-tracked past a freshly opened control window. — Peter Robb, New York Times Book Review, 25 May 2008 But many more people deserve the Nobel than get it. Krauss should've gotten it years ago. Though by now so many other discoveries have been made that he's farther down in an ever increasing queue. — Carl Djerassi, Cantor's Dilemma, 1989 We were forced to stand in a queue. Three jobs remain in the printer queue.

Verb

The World's Food Fair, Boston. October 1896. Admission: 25 cents. Huge crowds throng the Mechanics Hall convention center. Women queue up for free samples from 200 different vendors: cereals, gelatins, extracts, candy, and custards. — Christopher Kimball, Cook's Illustrated, January & February 2008 Nothing hacks off a national lawmaker more than a person who will not wait in line, unless that line is in front of an elevator at the U.S. Capitol, where Senators and Representatives use private elevators, lest they have to queue with their constituents. — Steve Rushin, Time, 10 Sept. 2007 The crowd was queuing at the snack bar.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

All members were given cards with a number—an indication of one’s place on the ever-growing queue of layman astronauts. Sam Blum, Popular Mechanics, "When Pan Am Promised To Fly Us To the Moon," 28 Feb. 2019 The rummage sale had a queue of customers before doors opened at 9 a.m. The church basement included a bake sale and a table for Save the Band T-shirt sales. Karie Angell Luc, chicagotribune.com, "'We're here to save the band': Rummage sale part of fundraising effort to keep Norridge District 80 band program alive," 7 May 2018 Balasaheb Chouhan, a smallholder in Puntamba, says the paperwork for selling to the state is fiendish, and then typically there are week-long queues of farmers waiting to unload their goods, followed by weeks more of waiting to be paid. The Economist, "India’s government claims to subsidise farmers, but actually hurts them," 12 July 2018 On the weekends, there’s often a queue outside the Westbourne Green boutique. Elizabeth Wellington, Vogue, "Where to Find London’s Hidden French Side," 7 Jan. 2019 There've been similar situations at Washington's Sea-Tac Airport and at New York City's La Guardia International, where snaking queues built up with limited officers there to handle the crowds on Sunday, according to ABC. Sam Blum, Popular Mechanics, "TSA Workers Are Calling Out Sick as the Government Shutdown Rages On," 7 Jan. 2019 Thirty-year-old Amoy Street Food Centre in the Central Business District delivers the classic street food experience: crowds and queues. Robyn Eckhardt, WSJ, "Two Strategic Days in Singapore: Where to Splurge, Where to Save," 4 Jan. 2019 Come January, Netflix is making that proposition even more appealing, upping its queue with over 30 Netflix Originals and Netflix Movies. Vogue, "Here’s What to Watch on Netflix in January," 17 Dec. 2018 The newest royal to add The Crown to their Netflix queue is Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, wife of Prince Charles. Rose Minutaglio, Town & Country, "Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall, Reportedly Watches The Crown," 1 Nov. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

All the holiday fun starts later this month, so be sure to queue up your DVR now! Jessica Leigh Mattern, Country Living, "'Wonder Years' Stars Danica McKellar and Dan Lauria Will Reunite for a Hallmark Christmas Movie," 3 Oct. 2018 There were dozens of other people queued up for their turn in the mud, most of whom — like me — had come in on tour buses. Zoe Weiner, Allure, "I Bathed in Colombia’s “Volcano of Youth” and My Skin Has Never Felt Softer," 23 Oct. 2018 Chelsea will face significant competition in their efforts to keep N'Golo Kante at Stamford Bridge this summer, as a whole host of European superpowers are queuing up to sign the two-time Premier League winner. SI.com, "Real Madrid Enter Battle With Barcelona & PSG to Sign Chelsea Star Who 'Supported Them as a Boy'," 24 June 2018 Crowds queued outside supermarkets in Caracas on Saturday (Jan. 6) after the Venezuelan government demanded drastic discounts. Bloomberg, Houston Chronicle, "Too hungry to pump oil, PDVSA crews skip work to hunt for food," 22 Feb. 2018 There's even a section of Thanksgiving songs for kids, so choose your favorites and queue up the ultimate turkey tunes. Taysha Murtaugh, Country Living, "35 Thanksgiving Songs About Food, Family, and Gratitude," 24 July 2018 After receiving a band, a dozen odd people queued up on Mercer Street to enter the store. Steff Yotka, Vogue, "Palace x Polo Ralph Lauren’s Collab Arrived Today With a Civilized Drop in New York," 9 Nov. 2018 Thousands will queue on the west front of the Capitol in the summertime heat for the opportunity to spend just a few seconds walking past the casket of John Sidney McCain. Chad Pergram, Fox News, "History at the Capitol Rotunda, where McCain's casket will lie in state," 30 Aug. 2018 According to Twitch, GIFs will be queued up and delivered one-by-one. Megan Farokhmanesh, The Verge, "Twitch broadcasts are getting GIFs," 17 July 2018

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

Noun

1748, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1777, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for queue

Noun and Verb

French, literally, tail, from Old French cue, coe, from Latin cauda, coda

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Statistics for queue

Last Updated

14 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for queue

The first known use of queue was in 1748

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More Definitions for queue

queue

noun

English Language Learners Definition of queue

 (Entry 1 of 2)

chiefly British : a line of people who are waiting for something
computers : a series of instructions that are stored in a computer so that they can be processed later

queue

verb

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

chiefly British : to form or wait in a line

queue

noun
\ ˈkyü How to pronounce queue (audio) \

Kids Definition of queue

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : pigtail
2 : a waiting line There's a queue at the ticket window.

queue

verb
queued; queuing or queueing

Kids Definition of queue (Entry 2 of 2)

: to form or wait in a line People are queuing for tickets.

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More from Merriam-Webster on queue

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with queue

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for queue

Spanish Central: Translation of queue

Nglish: Translation of queue for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of queue for Arabic Speakers

Comments on queue

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