re·​dun·​dan·​cy | \ ri-ˈdən-dən(t)-sē How to pronounce redundancy (audio) \
plural redundancies

Definition of redundancy

1a : the quality or state of being redundant : superfluity
b : the use of redundant components also : such components
c chiefly British : dismissal from a job especially by layoff
3a : superfluous repetition : prolixity
b : an act or instance of needless repetition
4 : the part of a message that can be eliminated without loss of essential information

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Did You Know?

Redundancy, closely related to redound, has stayed close to the original meaning of "overflow" or "more than necessary". Avoiding redundancy is one of the prime rules of good writing. ""In the modern world of today" contains a redundancy; so does "He died of fatal wounds" and "For the mutual benefit of both parties". But redundancy doesn't just occur in language. "Data redundancy" means keeping the same computer data in more than one place as a safety measure, and a backup system in an airplane may provide redundancy, again for the sake of safety.

Examples of redundancy in a Sentence

Avoid redundancy in your writing. Try to avoid using redundancies in your writing. The design incorporates several redundancies. a system with a high level of redundancy The restructuring is expected to result in the redundancy of several hundred workers. The workers are now facing redundancy.
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Recent Examples on the Web

To add redundancy, the drone’s computers use multiple methods to recognize hazards. Alan Levin,, "Amazon unveils a chopper-plane mashup to deliver packages," 6 June 2019 Pickell tells his clients to find out what redundancy measures are in place for every level of a cloud provider’s platform such as connectivity, infrastructure, application and networking. Gene Marks,, "Small businesses depend on companies like Google. So, how to protect against outages?," 5 June 2019 This year's test phase will include a full RTC and a mobile air traffic control tower operating simultaneously for safety redundancy and data comparison. Eric Tegler, Popular Mechanics, "With Saab's Remote Towers, Air Traffic Controllers Could Work From Anywhere," 23 Mar. 2016 The configuration also provides some redundancy, as Burns said that the SureFly can still fly after losing one propeller per arm. John Timmer, Ars Technica, "Workhorse brings an electric pickup truck, helicopter to Manhattan," 19 Aug. 2018 In a process filled with shared responsibility, double-checks and redundancy, this is a time when an individual alone carried the weight of the operation. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "The Air Force Destroyed an Unarmed Minuteman III ICBM During a Test Gone Wrong," 31 July 2018 LibGen equated survival with redundancy, and so made both its collection and its software available to others. Joe Karaganis, Washington Post, "Russia is building a new Napster — but for academic research," 13 July 2018 Abuelsamid also pointed out the lack of hardware and software redundancy that would be necessary for a truly autonomous vehicle (SAE level 5 in the jargon). Jonathan M. Gitlin, Ars Technica, "Elon Musk promises big new Tesla Autopilot upgrade, but is it legal?," 10 Dec. 2018 The structure didn’t have the safety redundancies present in most bridges, said Michael Chajes, a professor at the University of Delaware who specializes in finding the causes of bridge collapses. Eric Sylvers, WSJ, "Italy, EU Spar Over Bridge Collapse," 16 Aug. 2018

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

1601, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Statistics for redundancy

Last Updated

13 Jun 2019

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Time Traveler for redundancy

The first known use of redundancy was in 1601

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More Definitions for redundancy



English Language Learners Definition of redundancy

: the act of using a word, phrase, etc., that repeats something else and is therefore unnecessary
: a word, phrase, etc., that repeats something else and is therefore unnecessary : a redundant word, phrase, etc.
technical : a part in a machine, system, etc., that has the same function as another part and that exists so that the entire machine, system, etc., will not fail if the main part fails

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