sub·​ti·​tle | \ ˈsəb-ˌtī-tᵊl How to pronounce subtitle (audio) \

Definition of subtitle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a secondary or explanatory title
2 : a printed statement or fragment of dialogue appearing on the screen between the scenes of a silent motion picture or appearing as a translation at the bottom of the screen during the scenes of a motion picture or television show in a foreign language


subtitled; subtitling; subtitles

Definition of subtitle (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to give a subtitle to

Examples of subtitle in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

English subtitles do only so much to translate Zoabi’s jokes, many of which riff on the complicated political reality. Nora Mcgreevy,, "In ‘Tel Aviv on Fire,’ soap opera meets Middle Eastern politics," 15 Aug. 2019 Anyone who’s not a fan of reading subtitles might struggle with this one, but it’s worth it. Sydney Bucksbaum,, "The Boys, Good Boys, and Our Boys guide: Which one is right for you?," 26 July 2019 What: The 2018 Portuguese film with English subtitles. Greg Burnett,, "Special screening of Portuguese film ‘Diamantino’ booked at Cleveland Cinematheque," 16 Aug. 2019 The series, in Hebrew and Arabic with English subtitles, weaves archival news footage together with scenes filmed around Jerusalem to create a haunting reenactment of events. Washington Post, "HBO drama looks at killings of teens that ignited Gaza war," 7 Aug. 2019 Note: In Arabic, Hebrew and English, with English subtitles. Kerry Lengel, azcentral, "Review: ‘The Reports on Sarah and Saleem’ is an intimate geopolitical thriller," 24 July 2019 In Spanish with English subtitles Not rated Running time: 1 hour, 49 minutes Playing: Starts July 19, Laemmle Royal, West L.A. Carlos Aguilar, Los Angeles Times, "Review: Argentine white-collar crime drama ‘Rojo’ revels in 1970s corruption and style," 18 July 2019 The film will be shown in Farsi with English subtitles. Anne Gelhaus, The Mercury News, "Sunnyvale community briefs for the week of July 19," 14 July 2019 The Fall of the American Empire Who: Written and directed by Denys Arcand; in French, with English subtitles; starring Alexandre Landry, Maripier Morin and Remy Girard. Chuck Yarborough,, "‘The Fall of the American Empire’ takes an unusual look at whether money CAN buy happiness (review)," 8 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

While on the run, Zachs used two aliases and polished his Spanish by watching English-language that were subtitled in Spanish. Dave Altimari,, "Former West Hartford fugitive and convicted murderer Adam Zach loses bid for new trial in 1987 Prospect Cafe killing," 24 July 2019 When Blade Runner — Black Lotus does air, it’ll be shown with an English dub during Adult Swim’s Toonami programming block, and it will be subtitled on Crunchyroll’s streaming service. Michael Moore, The Verge, "A Blade Runner anime series is being produced by Adult Swim and Crunchyroll," 29 Nov. 2018 Modern-er Warfare As expected, the new Call of Duty was announced this week and is indeed subtitled Modern Warfare, no number. Hayden Dingman, PCWorld, "This week in games: Iron Maiden sues 3D Realms, Larian teases Baldur's Gate III," 31 May 2019 The series could use a winner that’s not subtitled Warhammer. Hayden Dingman, PCWorld, "This week in games: Call of Duty's battle royale is free-to-try, Steam moved 15 exabytes of data in 2018," 18 Jan. 2019 Marathi, Hindi, English Punjabi, and Gujarati (all subtitled; turn off the awful English dubbing)—and the arrestingly chromatic visuals. Taylor Antrim, Vogue, "Netflix’s Sacred Games Is Your Next Binge Watch," 20 July 2018 The slate features In the Fade, which won the Golden Globe for best foreign-language film, as well as US premieres — all subtitled in English — and Q&As with filmmakers., "Five things to do, March 19-25," 16 Mar. 2018 Banana Fish starts streaming July 5th on Amazon Prime Video subtitled. Michael Moore, The Verge, "Eight new anime shows to check out this summer," 29 June 2018 Normally, closed caption subtitling bleeps words in a variety of different ways: phrases, such as (bleep), [expletive], or [censored] may be used, though sometimes hyphens or asterisks are substituted instead (f–k, f---, or f*** are all examples. Ace Ratcliff, SELF, "I Rely On Closed Captions to Enjoy a Show And I Don't Appreciate Netflix's Way of Censoring Them," 10 July 2018

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


1815, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1830, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for subtitle

Last Updated

2 Sep 2019

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Time Traveler for subtitle

The first known use of subtitle was in 1815

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More Definitions for subtitle



English Language Learners Definition of subtitle

: words that appear on the screen during a movie, video, or television show and that are translations of what the actors are saying
: a title that comes after the main title of a book and that often gives more information about the contents of the book

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More from Merriam-Webster on subtitle

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with subtitle

Spanish Central: Translation of subtitle

Nglish: Translation of subtitle for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of subtitle for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about subtitle

Comments on subtitle

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


one from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan

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