red·​line | \ˈred-ˈlīn \

Definition of redline 

(Entry 1 of 2)

: a recommended safety limit : the fastest, farthest, or highest point or degree considered safe also : the red line which marks this point on a gauge


red·​line | \ˈred-ˌlīn, -ˈlīn\
redlined; redlining; redlines

Definition of redline (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to withhold home-loan funds or insurance from neighborhoods considered poor economic risks

transitive verb

: to discriminate against in housing or insurance

Examples of redline in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The car is powered by a 1.3L, four-cylinder Suzuki bike engine that loves to rev up to the 10,000rpm redline. Jonathan M. Gitlin, Ars Technica, "How a day driving high-downforce cars at VIR taught me I’m OK being slow," 11 Sep. 2018 The redline moves up the scale as well, to 7,500 rpm. Jeff Yip, Houston Chronicle, "2019 Mazda MX-5 gets 26-hp boost," 23 June 2018 Bolton quite critical that President Obama's, quote, redline on Syria from several years ago, a line that was crossed by Assad and met with no U.S. military action. Fox News, "Will Trump authorize a retaliation against the Assad regime?," 9 Apr. 2018 The point is, revving the RS3 to redline should be done often and with great enthusiasm. Ezra Dyer, Car and Driver, "Keep Audi Weird! An Ode to the RS3’s Riotous Five-Cylinder Engine," 26 Jan. 2018 The only real chink in the Giulia's armor in this regard is the engine, or more specifically its redline. Jonathan M. Gitlin, Ars Technica, "The Alfa Romeo Giulia Ti: A sports sedan for people who want to drive," 6 Apr. 2018 As such, a 26-hp bump isn’t out of the question, assuming the G would be given better intake and exhaust plumbing and tweaks to engine internals to raise its 6800-rpm redline by a few hundred revolutions per minute. Alexander Stoklosa, Car and Driver, "2019 Mazda MX-5 Miata Could See 26-HP Bump to 181 Ponies," 1 Mar. 2018 The large tachometer indicates a 6,500 rpm redline while the speedometer is marked to an overly optimistic 160 mph. Jeff Yip, Houston Chronicle, "VW’s revamped 2019 Jetta R-Line delivers bang for the buck," 5 May 2018 And since the August 2013 attack that prompted the Obama Administration to declare that its redline had been crossed, Human Rights Watch confirms 85 chemical weapons attacks, the majority traceable to the Assad regime. Heather Hurlburt, Daily Intelligencer, "The Moral High Ground on Syria Is Empty," 9 Apr. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

In Houston and its nearby cities, poorer, often historically redlined, districts in low-lying areas were disproportionately impacted by flooding, in comparison to wealthier districts with better infrastructure, according to data from ThinkProgress. Bridget Read, Vogue, "For Trump, Hurricane Florence Will Be a Test He’s Already Failed," 12 Sep. 2018 It was initially created to address the practice of redlining—or banks failing to serve poor and minority neighborhoods. Ryan Tracy, WSJ, "Trump Team’s Rewrite of Low-Income Lending Rules Falters," 24 Aug. 2018 Insurers deny 'redlining' There is a history in metro Detroit and across the country of banks, mortgage lenders and real estate agents in the past denying equal services to blacks and those living in predominantly minority areas. Jc Reindl, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit car insurance: Why Cleveland has it way cheaper," 23 Mar. 2018 Another is segregation, secession, redlining and rebranding: This is the art and craft of exclusion. Parul Sehgal, New York Times, "Toxic History, Poisoned Water: The Story of Flint," 3 July 2018 Democrats say this will open the door to discriminatory practices because the rules required collection of credit scores, loan amounts and interest rates in an effort to expose redlining and lending discrimination. Emily Flitter, New York Times, "Congress Approves First Big Dodd-Frank Rollback," 22 May 2018 The gang claims turf in this particular neighborhood of southeastern San Diego, squarely a historic African-American neighborhood that had been subjected to redlining decades earlier. Cyrus Farivar, Ars Technica, "How a suspected gang member’s traffic stop led to a crucial privacy case," 8 May 2018 Drennon wrote, ‘in a non-Anglo population living in very humble housing which was later redlined and thus denied capital for rehab or upgrades. W. Gardner Selby, San Antonio Express-News, "Did Lupe Valdez really come from the poorest ZIP code in San Antonio?," 9 May 2018 Universal has aggressively increased market share in South Florida over the past two years while numerous companies, citing losses from claims abuses and increased litigation, have redlined parts or all of the tricounty region. Ron Hurtibise,, "Hurricane Irma powers sharp increase in lawsuits against insurers," 3 May 2018

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


1952, in the meaning defined above


1968, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

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Last Updated

20 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for redline

The first known use of redline was in 1952

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Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with redline

Nglish: Translation of redline for Spanish Speakers

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a nest or breeding place

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