snap·​shot | \ ˈsnap-ˌshät How to pronounce snapshot (audio) \

Definition of snapshot

1 : a casual photograph made typically by an amateur with a small handheld camera
2 : an impression or view of something brief or transitory a snapshot of life back then

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms for snapshot


photo, photograph, pic, print, shot, snap

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of snapshot in a Sentence

fans excitedly took snapshots of the rock star as he dashed into the hotel

Recent Examples on the Web

There was a selfie of her on a chairlift, a snapshot of her on the slopes, a picture of her lounging in the afternoon sun. Elise Taylor, Vogue, "Inside Gigi Hadid’s Chic Alpine Getaway to Jackson Hole," 2 Apr. 2019 Watch the motivational three-minute video and explore behind-the-scenes snapshots from the digital campaign below. Nicole Saunders, Harper's BAZAAR, "Jane Fonda Celebrates International Women's Day," 8 Mar. 2019 The prints on the smaller end of the scale would display beautifully on a bookshelf or side table, while the larger prints can proudly hang from your parents' living room wall to flaunt snapshots of their beloved grandkids. Blair Donovan, Country Living, "Minted's Heart Snapshot Mix Photo Art Is THE Perfect Gift for Your Nearest and Dearest," 5 Mar. 2019 First-quarter snapshots are expected to result in a 2.5 percent decline in earnings, however. Alex Veiga, The Seattle Times, "US stocks edge higher in early trading, extending gains," 20 Feb. 2019 Passengers on board the plane filmed and posted snapshots of the dilapidated engine to social media, broadcasting their trepidation for all the world to see. Sam Blum, Popular Mechanics, "8 Emergency Landings That Rival the 'Miracle on the Hudson'," 15 Jan. 2019 According to the teachings of astrology, your birth chart — that is, a snapshot of the sky at your exact moment of birth — is your celestial fingerprint. Allure, "How the Sun's Position In Your Birth Chart Affects Your Zodiac Sign," 14 Aug. 2018 The results also gave a snapshot of cost pressures affecting the broader industry. Spencer Jakab, WSJ, "Time to Get the Check at Booming Darden," 20 Sep. 2018 Beyond lounging by the sea all day long, Selena also made time for some physical activity, evidenced by the adorable snapshot of a beach horseback ride. Nicole Saunders, Harper's BAZAAR, "Selena Gomez Celebrates Her BFF's Bachelorette Party in Cabo San Lucas," 13 Feb. 2019

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

See More

First Known Use of snapshot

1890, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about snapshot

Statistics for snapshot

Last Updated

11 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for snapshot

The first known use of snapshot was in 1890

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for snapshot



English Language Learners Definition of snapshot

: an informal photograph that is taken quickly
: a quick view or a small amount of information that tells you a little about what someone or something is like


snap·​shot | \ ˈsnap-ˌshät How to pronounce snapshot (audio) \

Kids Definition of snapshot

: a photograph taken usually with an inexpensive hand-held camera

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on snapshot

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with snapshot

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for snapshot

Spanish Central: Translation of snapshot

Nglish: Translation of snapshot for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of snapshot for Arabic Speakers

Comments on snapshot

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


not to be persuaded, moved, or stopped

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Latin Quiz

  • roman forum
  • Which of the following months comes from a Latin word for “ten”?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!