sec·​tion | \ ˈsek-shən How to pronounce section (audio) \

Definition of section

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : the action or an instance of cutting or separating by cutting
b : a part set off by or as if by cutting
2 : a distinct part or portion of something written (such as a chapter, law, or newspaper)
3a : the profile of something as it would appear if cut through by an intersecting plane
b : the plane figure resulting from the cutting of a solid by a plane
4 : a natural subdivision of a taxonomic group
5 : a character § used as a mark for the beginning of a section and as a reference mark
6 : a piece of land one square mile in area forming especially one of the 36 subdivisions of a township
7 : a distinct part of a territorial or political area, community, or group of people the historic section of the city
8a : a part that may be, is, or is viewed as separated a board cut into sections the northern section of the route
b : one segment of a fruit : carpel
9 : a basic military unit usually having a special function
10 : a very thin slice (as of tissue) suitable for microscopic examination
11a : one of the classes formed by dividing the students taking a course
b : one of the discussion groups into which a conference or organization is divided
12a : a part of a permanent railroad way under the care of a particular crew
b : one of two or more vehicles or trains which run on the same schedule
13 : one of several component parts that may be assembled or reassembled a bookcase in sections
14 : a division of an orchestra composed of one class of instruments the string section


sectioned; sectioning\ ˈsek-​sh(ə-​)niŋ How to pronounce section (audio) \

Definition of section (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to cut or separate into sections section an orange
2 : to represent in sections

intransitive verb

: to become cut or separated into parts

Synonyms for section

Synonyms: Noun

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Choose the Right Synonym for section


part, portion, piece, member, division, section, segment, fragment mean something less than the whole. part is a general term appropriate when indefiniteness is required. they ran only part of the way portion implies an assigned or allotted part. cut the pie into six portions piece applies to a separate or detached part of a whole. a puzzle with 500 pieces member suggests one of the functional units composing a body. a structural member division applies to a large or diversified part. the manufacturing division of the company section applies to a relatively small or uniform part. the entertainment section of the newspaper segment applies to a part separated or marked out by or as if by natural lines of cleavage. the retired segment of the population fragment applies to a part produced by or as if by breaking off. only a fragment of the play still exists

Examples of section in a Sentence

Noun the upper section of the bridge This section of the road is closed. the frozen food section in the supermarket the Crown Heights section of Brooklyn Do you want to sit in the nonsmoking section? The dictionary includes a section on signs and symbols. Section 1123 of the bankruptcy code. ads that target one section of the population The siding comes in five-foot sections. Verb Peel and section the orange. Section the chicken and marinate the parts. She was sectioned by the judge. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun At the time, a section of the morgue’s cooler where children’s remains are stored was blocked by an employee who was transporting a body out. Globe Staff,, 23 June 2022 Hadden also introduced changes to the city’s rules on heating, but the section of the new ordinance addressing heating systems was tabled by the committee Tuesday so it can be worked on further before the colder months roll in. Shanzeh Ahmad, Chicago Tribune, 22 June 2022 Without missing a beat, Today show fans rushed over to the Instagram comments section to give the entire Roker family some love. Adrianna Freedman, Good Housekeeping, 22 June 2022 Texas A&M University-San Antonio has expanded, the Eagle Ford Shale took off in 2009, and the Mission Reach section of the River Walk was completed in 2013. Madison Iszler, San Antonio Express-News, 14 June 2022 The early awards presentations, or Act One as they were called, were hosted by Darren Criss and Julianne Hough, while the prime-time section of the show was hosted by recent Oscar winner Ariana DeBose. Times Staff, Los Angeles Times, 12 June 2022 Look for the stories and staff photography in the Saturday paper, though for Sunday-only subscribers, the section will be included in that day’s delivery. Steve Svekis, Sun Sentinel, 12 June 2022 In 1978, a 53-mile section of the waterway in West Virginia was established as the New River Gorge National River. Liz Cantrell, Travel + Leisure, 8 June 2022 Highbridge section had been tested for the presence of the bacteria Legionella, which causes the disease, a form of pneumonia. From Usa Today Network And Wire Reports, USA TODAY, 26 May 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Each night, strictly section off your time for the next day to focus on specific tasks. Brian Cristiano, Forbes, 5 May 2022 For a taxpayer excluding $10 million of capital gain at the 100% exclusion percentage, the tax savings can approach $3 million, assuming the seller’s home state conforms to section 1202. Daniel Mayo, Forbes, 8 Nov. 2021 Walls have been inserted to section off two bedrooms, but sliding doors mean that the space can be opened out or closed off. Ruth Bloomfield, WSJ, 22 Dec. 2021 Just section off several braids and wrap them into bantu knots. Jasmine Washington, Seventeen, 24 Sep. 2021 Tip: To create Dutch or French braid pigtails, a.k.a. a double braid, create a center part and section off one side of hair before focusing the braiding technique on the other. Marielle Marlys, Good Housekeeping, 20 Sep. 2021 Pompano Beach City Hall scrambled to get cones for the volunteers to section off the area quickly from human intruders who could wreak havoc. Lisa J. Huriash,, 5 July 2021 Outdoor rugs look great on patios or even to section off an outdoor living space in a backyard with a dining table or a sofa and chairs. Amanda Lauren, Forbes, 14 June 2021 However, to section off a few buildings that maintain commitment to the classics while not providing other pressure leaves too many without. Daniel Buck, National Review, 6 June 2021 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'section.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of section


1534, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1819, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for section


Latin section-, sectio, from secare to cut — more at saw

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Time Traveler for section

Time Traveler

The first known use of section was in 1534

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Dictionary Entries Near section




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Statistics for section

Last Updated

25 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Section.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Jun. 2022.

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More Definitions for section


sec·​tion | \ ˈsek-shən How to pronounce section (audio) \

Kids Definition of section

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a division of a thing or place A section of the fence broke.
2 : a part cut off or separated a section of an orange
3 : a part of a written work the sports section of a newspaper


sectioned; sectioning

Kids Definition of section (Entry 2 of 2)

: to cut into parts


sec·​tion | \ ˈsek-shən How to pronounce section (audio) \

Medical Definition of section

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the action or an instance of cutting or separating by cutting especially : the action of dividing (as tissues) surgically nerve section abdominal section — see cesarean section
2 : a natural subdivision of a taxonomic group
3 : a very thin slice (as of tissue) suitable for microscopic examination


transitive verb
sectioned; sectioning\ -​sh(ə-​)niŋ How to pronounce section (audio) \

Medical Definition of section (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to divide (a body part or organ) surgically section a nerve
2 : to cut (fixed tissue) into thin slices for microscopic examination

More from Merriam-Webster on section

Nglish: Translation of section for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of section for Arabic Speakers


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