re·​write | \ (ˌ)rē-ˈrīt How to pronounce rewrite (audio) \
rewrote\ (ˌ)rē-​ˈrōt How to pronounce rewrote (audio) \; rewritten\ (ˌ)rē-​ˈri-​tᵊn How to pronounce rewritten (audio) \; rewriting\ (ˌ)rē-​ˈrī-​tiŋ How to pronounce rewriting (audio) \

Definition of rewrite

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to write in reply
2 : to make a revision of (something, such as a story) : cause to be revised: such as
a : to put (contributed material) into form for publication
b : to alter (previously published material) for use in another publication

intransitive verb

: to revise something previously written


re·​write | \ ˈrē-ˌrīt How to pronounce rewrite (audio) \

Definition of rewrite (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a piece of writing (such as a news story) constructed by rewriting
2 : an act or instance of rewriting

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Other Words from rewrite


rewriter noun

Examples of rewrite in a Sentence


The teacher asked him to rewrite the essay. I had to rewrite the computer program.

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Lawyers for state and county election officials argued that the Abrams campaign was trying to use a postelection lawsuit to rewrite Georgia’s election laws. Kate Brumback, The Seattle Times, "Georgia senator decries her arrest at vote-count protest," 14 Nov. 2018 The book follows Sancia Grado, a thief attempting to steal a powerful device that holds unimaginable power to rewrite the laws of reality. Andrew Liptak, The Verge, "All the science fiction and fantasy books that you should check out this month," 1 Aug. 2018 There are traditions that should be respected and others that can be rewritten. Alexandra Macon, Vogue, "A Proposal Under a Supermoon in Switzerland Led to a Wedding Celebration in the Utah Desert," 3 Jan. 2019 This is a new era for human spaceflight, a total rewriting of rules. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "Cape Canaveral's Legendary Launchpad Is Ready for Astronauts Once More," 16 Aug. 2018 To all the survivors out there, don't let anyone rewrite your story. Lucy Wood, Marie Claire, "At the ESPYs, Aly Raisman and More Than 140 Other Abuse Survivors Were Honored For Their Courage," 19 July 2018 To all the survivors out there, don't let anyone rewrite your story. Abby Gardner, Glamour, "Watch 141 Larry Nassar Survivors Receive the Arthur Ashe Award for Courage at the 2018 ESPYS," 18 July 2018 Congress should rewrite the law, but at least the Trump Administration is now trying to reduce arbitrary rule-making by offering clearer standards for the Financial Stability Oversight Council. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "Limiting Too Big to Fail," 18 Mar. 2019 This post was rewritten for clarity and grammar fixes. Dan Goodin, Ars Technica, "Malware has no trouble hiding and bypassing macOS user warnings," 14 Aug. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

In addition to the splits over the Green Leap Forward, Medicare for All and constitutional rewrites, Robert Mueller’s report has opened a new divide. Kimberley A. Strassel, WSJ, "The Mueller Bitter Enders," 28 Mar. 2019 The emails reveal a bare bones operation as the United States embarked on a rewrite of a trade deal that has become critical to the many North American businesses that have built up supply chains around Nafta. New York Times, "White House’s Nafta Approach Frustrates Businesses, Panicked Emails Show," 6 June 2018 The department laid out its interim enforcement priorities to provide temporary clarity while its broader rewrite of service animal rules is being completed. Michael Laris, Washington Post, "Miniature horses are welcome as service animals, but monkeys are a maybe, according to U.S. airline regulators," 16 May 2018 Begich is open to changes that clarify the law but not a wholesale rewrite. Becky Bohrer, The Seattle Times, "Some Alaska lawmakers say new ethics rules are too limiting," 10 Feb. 2019 Hedge funds could also benefit if lawsuits investors have filed related to the government’s rewrite of the bailout terms are decided in their favor. Andrew Ackerman, WSJ, "Popular Hedge Fund Bet on Fannie and Freddie Is Paying Off Big This Year," 26 Jan. 2019 Parliament rejected the law in its current form, so there is still opportunity for a rewrite and second vote. Jennie Neufeld, Vox, "Vox Sentences: Trump drains his own swamp," 6 July 2018 Now, the tax-code rewrite could throw that into reverse., "Beware the $500 Billion Bond Exodus," 17 Jan. 2018 Hatch used his role as chairman of the powerful Senate Finance Committee to get a major rewrite of the U.S. tax codes to the president’s desk while Trump helped Hatch downsize the monuments and get a Utah man freed from a Venezuelan prison. Brady Mccombs, The Seattle Times, "Hatch laments loss of civility for US Senate in ‘crisis’," 12 Dec. 2018

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


1567, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1


1901, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for rewrite

Last Updated

12 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for rewrite

The first known use of rewrite was in 1567

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More Definitions for rewrite



English Language Learners Definition of rewrite

: to write (something) again especially in a different way in order to improve it or to include new information


re·​write | \ ˌrē-ˈrīt How to pronounce rewrite (audio) \
rewrote\ -​ˈrōt \; rewritten\ -​ˈri-​tᵊn \; rewriting\ -​ˈrī-​tiŋ \

Kids Definition of rewrite

: to write over again especially in a different way Rewrite this confusing sentence.

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More from Merriam-Webster on rewrite

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with rewrite

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for rewrite

Spanish Central: Translation of rewrite

Nglish: Translation of rewrite for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of rewrite for Arabic Speakers

Comments on rewrite

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


to speak slightingly about or to degrade

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