re·​con·​struct | \ ˌrē-kən-ˈstrəkt How to pronounce reconstruct (audio) \
reconstructed; reconstructing; reconstructs

Definition of reconstruct

transitive verb

1 : to construct again: such as
a : to build or assemble (something) again reconstruct a damaged chimney
b medical : to subject (an organ or part) to surgery to re-form its structure or correct a defect an athlete with a surgically reconstructed shoulder
2a : to re-create or reimagine (something from the past) especially by using information acquired through research reconstructing a lost civilization The solution is to reconstruct the vocabularies of vanished ancient languages (so-called protolanguages) by comparing vocabularies of modern languages derived from them.— Jared Diamond
b : to create an accurate reenactment or understanding of (a past occurrence or event, such as an accident) by applying scientific principles and techniques to physical evidence McDaniel hired the firm to reconstruct a fiery collision in Limestone County several years ago in which two young women were killed when their car was engulfed in flames.— John Peck

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Other Words from reconstruct

reconstructible \ ˌrē-​kən-​ˈstrək-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce reconstructible (audio) \ adjective
reconstructive \ ˌrē-​kən-​ˈstrək-​tiv How to pronounce reconstructive (audio) \ adjective
reconstructor \ ˌrē-​kən-​ˈstrək-​tər How to pronounce reconstructor (audio) \ noun

Examples of reconstruct in a Sentence

After the earthquake, many houses needed to be reconstructed. Archaeologists were able to reconstruct most of the ancient village from their findings. They are attempting to reconstruct the events that led to the bridge's collapse.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Bumpass Hell basin is an area of hydrothermal fumaroles and boiling mud pits crossed by a boardwalk, also recently reconstructed. Red Bluff Daily News, The Mercury News, "Bumpass Hell: Popular hiking trail to reopen after two years," 11 Sep. 2019 Dean, the fire chief, said his agency is reconstructing how the complaint was handled and determining why no fire code inspection was performed at Kennedy Street NW. Washington Post, "D.C. officials strengthen policies for dangerous code violations after deadly fire," 5 Sep. 2019 Waber’s company is even experimenting with sound detectors that tell it if two people standing next to each other are speaking, although the system cannot reconstruct what anybody is actually saying. Rose Eveleth, Scientific American, "Your Employer May Be Spying on You—and Wasting Its Time," 16 Aug. 2019 The trooper, Corporal Robert Dooley, an accident investigator who had experience reconstructing hundreds of crashes, testified that there was evidence that Kemp had been braking at the time of impact and therefore couldn’t have been unconscious. Tonya Alanez,, "New trial ordered for driver serving 30 years for 2013 crash that killed five," 1 Aug. 2019 But a new study gives us a good answer to where, how, and when, and helps reconstruct the ancient climate of Mars. John Wenz, Popular Mechanics, "Rivers Flowed Forth on Mars Until 1 Billion Years Ago," 27 Mar. 2019 Investigators went through Reider’s trash several times to recover and reconstruct pieces of the paper from the notebook that Reider destroyed and threw in the garbage, the complaint says. Eric Heisig,, "Feds seek forfeiture of Mentor-on-the-Lake house, say occupant ran gambling operation," 27 Aug. 2019 Not reconstructing the section could lead to future closures and more delays and cancellations, according to the airport. Roland Li,, "SFO to close busiest runway for much of September: what you need to know," 26 Aug. 2019 The organizations share research in archaeology, anthropology and history to save wreck sites, reconstruct disrupted cultural heritage and connect communities to their past. Chris Searles, National Geographic, "Most slave shipwrecks have been overlooked—until now," 23 Aug. 2019

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

1762, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for reconstruct

Last Updated

17 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for reconstruct

The first known use of reconstruct was in 1762

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More Definitions for reconstruct



English Language Learners Definition of reconstruct

: to build (something damaged or destroyed) again
: to find out and describe or show the way an event or series of events happened


re·​con·​struct | \ ˌrē-kən-ˈstrəkt How to pronounce reconstruct (audio) \
reconstructed; reconstructing

Kids Definition of reconstruct

: to make or form again : rebuild


transitive verb
re·​con·​struct | \ ˌrē-kən-ˈstrəkt How to pronounce reconstruct (audio) \

Medical Definition of reconstruct

: to subject (an organ or part) to surgery so as to re-form the structure of or to correct a defect

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Comments on reconstruct

What made you want to look up reconstruct? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to spread over or through

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