shut·​down | \ ˈshət-ˌdau̇n How to pronounce shutdown (audio) \

Definition of shutdown

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the cessation or suspension of an operation or activity

shut down

shut down; shutting down; shuts down

Definition of shut down (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to settle so as to obscure vision : close in the night shut down early

transitive verb

: to make ineffective in competition shut down the opposition's offensive line

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Examples of shutdown in a Sentence

Noun the shutdown of the factory the factory resumed operation after a brief shutdown for repairs
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The unprecedented live-music industry shutdown sparked the creation of the National Independent Venue Association in April, co-founded by Pabst Theater Group CEO Gary Witt. Piet Levy, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Shank Hall set to reopen for tours July 10, with first concert on Aug. 7," 8 July 2020 Ige has outlined features of a new financial plan developed by his administration to cope with the pandemic, which triggered an abrupt economic shutdown and a steep dive in tax collections. USA TODAY, "Nail salons, strip club outbreak, Harvard from afar: News from around our 50 states," 8 July 2020 Preventing a shutdown Cincinnati City Council passed its mask ordinance as COVID-19 cases are trending up in Hamilton County. Hannah K. Sparling, The Enquirer, "COVID-19: Here's how Cincinnati's mask mandate will be enforced," 8 July 2020 The primary was originally set for March 31 but was delayed as Alabama shutdown due to coronavirus. Leada Gore |, al, "Primary runoff is July 14: Will masks be required to vote? What you need to know," 7 July 2020 What to know: Clark became the first recruit to pick up a UK scholarship offer during the recruiting shutdown on Thursday. Jon Hale, The Courier-Journal, "These prospects are the top 2021 Kentucky basketball recruiting targets," 7 July 2020 Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews said Tuesday that the entire city and some of its surrounds will be locked down again from Wednesday night under tougher restrictions than were imposed during the first shutdown that started in March. Andy Brownbill, Anchorage Daily News, "Australia’s 2nd largest city goes back into lockdown as coronavirus spreads," 7 July 2020 Sannes said the Mountainside challenge deals with the specific order to close gyms that came last week, not the previous shutdown order for all nonessential businesses. Ryan Randazzo, The Arizona Republic, "Judge plans to decide Tuesday if gyms can be open," 7 July 2020 Several cost-benefit calculations of the COVID-19 economic shutdown measures have recently appeared in the popular press. Olga Yakusheva, The Conversation, "Is the COVID-19 pandemic cure really worse than the disease? Here’s what our research found," 7 July 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Face-to-face classes during the fall term will have some measure of online or remote instruction so that students will be prepared should changing public health circumstances require in-person classes to shut down, the school announced. Mandy Mclaren, The Courier-Journal, "With masks, temperature checks, Jefferson Community & Technical College to reopen Aug. 17," 2 July 2020 Rasmussen was the only player invited from a group of nine non-roster players who were reassigned to minor-league camp before spring training was shut down by the pandemic in late March. Tom Haudricourt, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "The Brewers have invited 45 players to camp at Miller Park but held off naming rest of the player pool," 29 June 2020 Some, like the Kassabs, had only been open nine days – they’d been shut down by coronavirus restrictions -- when their stores were hit on May 30. oregonlive, "Downtown retailers still reeling from fiery riots and city’s meek response: “It was chaos”," 27 June 2020 The Golden West Hotel finally ceased operation in 2004, when it was shut down by the Maricopa County Department of Public Health. Emilly Davis, The Arizona Republic, "Historic downtown Phoenix Steinegger Lodging House building to be demolished," 24 June 2020 The president was mocked and shut down by comedian John Oliver and some in the media for the statement. Emma Colton, Washington Examiner, "Media ridiculed Trump in 2017 for predicting social justice movement would target Washington and Jefferson," 22 June 2020 The Golden Gate Bridge was briefly shut down on June 6 by a huge crowd of marchers that overflowed the walkways. Matthias Gafni,, "Protesters block Bay Bridge after peaceful day filled with marches," 14 June 2020 By the time she was cleared, there was no more season, shut down by the pandemic. Richard Obert, azcentral, "Poston Butte's Zion Burns finds closure at Desert Dream Last Hurrah track meet," 13 June 2020 Golf is the second major sport in the U.S., behind motor sports, to resume a schedule shut down by the COVID-19 pandemic. Mark Heim |, al, "No crowd results in expletive broadcast during Colonial; Jim Nantz all over it," 12 June 2020

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


1888, in the meaning defined above


1779, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

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Time Traveler for shutdown

Time Traveler

The first known use of shutdown was in 1779

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Statistics for shutdown

Last Updated

10 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Shutdown.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 13 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for shutdown


How to pronounce shut down (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of shutdown

: the act of stopping the operation or activity of a business, machine, etc., for a period of time or forever

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