summary

adjective
sum·​ma·​ry | \ ˈsə-mə-rē How to pronounce summary (audio) also ˈsəm-rē or -ˌmer-ē \

Definition of summary

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : comprehensive especially : covering the main points succinctly
2a : done without delay or formality : quickly executed a summary dismissal
b : of, relating to, or using a summary proceeding a summary trial

summary

noun
sum·​ma·​ry | \ ˈsə-mə-rē How to pronounce summary (audio) also ˈsəm-rē \
plural summaries

Definition of summary (Entry 2 of 2)

: an abstract, abridgment, or compendium especially of a preceding discourse

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Other Words from summary

Adjective

summarily \ (ˌ)sə-​ˈmer-​ə-​lē How to pronounce summary (audio) \ adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for summary

Adjective

concise, terse, succinct, laconic, summary, pithy, compendious mean very brief in statement or expression. concise suggests the removal of all that is superfluous or elaborative. a concise description terse implies pointed conciseness. a terse reply succinct implies the greatest possible compression. a succinct letter of resignation laconic implies brevity to the point of seeming rude, indifferent, or mysterious. an aloof and laconic stranger summary suggests the statement of main points with no elaboration or explanation. a summary listing of the year's main events pithy adds to succinct or terse the implication of richness of meaning or substance. a comedy sharpened by pithy one-liners compendious applies to what is at once full in scope and brief and concise in treatment. a compendious dictionary

Examples of summary in a Sentence

Adjective a summary account of the accident obviously a one-volume encyclopedia can offer only a very summary account of the American Civil War Noun He concluded the report with a brief summary. They gave a summary of their progress in building the bridge.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The campaign's summary notes how the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's director, Robert Redfield, contacted his counterpart in China and offered to send U.S. experts to aid its investigation on Jan. 3. Katherine Doyle, Washington Examiner, "Trump campaign team launches political organizing app in play to broaden digital reach," 23 Apr. 2020 Local health departments also can access summary disease reports. Rachel Dissell, cleveland, "Ohio releases demographic data on coronavirus cases, deaths for the first time," 6 Apr. 2020 Like Alcohol Amendment turned in the petition summary language and an initial 1,000 signatures to the Ohio attorney general on Monday. Jackie Borchardt, Cincinnati.com, "Ohio 2020 recreational marijuana legalization measure filed: 5 things to know," 2 Mar. 2020 The finding followed two separate internal affairs inquiries, according to the board’s summary report. oregonlive, "Former Portland detective racked up nearly 100,000 miles on his take-home police car in 3 years," 3 Jan. 2020 Their activities range from retailing smuggled cigarettes to providing cable TV, electricity or transport service, and are also known to extort businesses and carry out summary executions. Washington Post, "Number of shootings down in Rio de Janeiro, report says," 2 Jan. 2020 State finance officials said anyone can read those summary documents and raise questions themselves. Jason Pohl, ProPublica, "California Gave Billions in Taxpayer Dollars to Improve Jails. But That’s Not How These Sheriffs Are Spending It.," 28 Dec. 2019 The State Department also barred entry to two Paraguayan officials for corruption and a Russian official US officials have accused of presiding over the summary execution of 27 men in Chechnya. BostonGlobe.com, "The State Department on Tuesday barred a Saudi diplomat from entering the United States, citing his involvement in ‘‘gross violations of human rights’’ in the killing of Jamal Khashoggi last year.," 11 Dec. 2019 Think about these questions and formulate your responses into a solid qualifications summary to open your resume. Dear Sam | Expert Resume, al, "Leave hiring managers feeling ‘full’ and ‘satisfied’ after reviewing your resume," 22 Nov. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun In summary, both physics and machine learning have some similarity. Cindy Gordon, Forbes, "Why Physics has Relevancy To Artificial Intelligence And Building AI Leadership Brain Trust?," 27 Apr. 2021 The production’s last minutes are abrupt, glossing over the last act of the tale in summary. New York Times, "‘Blindness’ Review: Listening to the Sound of Theater Again," 6 Apr. 2021 Police investigators' December 23 interview with Officer Amy Detweiler, documented in a summary obtained by CBS News on Tuesday, provides more details about the events leading up to the fatal shooting. Victoria Albert, CBS News, "Officer who witnessed fatal shooting of Andre Hill says she did not see him pose a threat," 30 Dec. 2020 At a video meeting with Canadian and European officials last month, Xie praised the return of the United States to the climate change negotiations, according to an official Chinese summary of the meeting. BostonGlobe.com, "Seeking cooperation on climate, US faces friction with China," 15 Apr. 2021 About 1 in 5 New Mexico households does not have an internet subscription, according to the administration’s summary. From Usa Today Network And Wire Reports, USA TODAY, "Women’s work, ‘Curated Cocktails,’ Met Gala: News from around our 50 states," 14 Apr. 2021 Before the amendment to add $25 per week to the maximum benefit, a fiscal summary estimated HB 1039 would save Tennessee more than $31 million a year in unemployment payments. Jon Styf, Washington Examiner, "Tennessee lawmakers to consider reducing eligibility time for unemployment benefits," 14 Apr. 2021 An explanation and summary of the STEP Act can be found on Sen. Van Hollen’s website. Dallas News, "Pending legislation to watch: Proposed changes upend estate planning," 11 Apr. 2021 Here's the Twin Cities weather summary through the first 10 days of April. Todd Nelson, Star Tribune, "Weather Models: A Few Slushy Encounters," 11 Apr. 2021

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

Adjective

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1509, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for summary

Adjective

Middle English, from Medieval Latin summarius, from Latin summa sum

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Time Traveler for summary

Time Traveler

The first known use of summary was in the 15th century

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Cite this Entry

“Summary.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/summary. Accessed 12 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for summary

summary

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of summary

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: using few words to give the most important information about something
formal : done quickly in a way that does not follow the normal process

summary

noun

English Language Learners Definition of summary (Entry 2 of 2)

: a brief statement that gives the most important information about something

summary

adjective
sum·​ma·​ry | \ ˈsə-mə-rē How to pronounce summary (audio) \

Kids Definition of summary

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : expressing or covering the main points briefly : concise a summary account
2 : done without delay summary punishment

summary

noun
plural summaries

Kids Definition of summary (Entry 2 of 2)

: a short statement of the main points (as in a book or report)

summary

adjective
sum·​ma·​ry | \ ˈsə-mə-rē How to pronounce summary (audio) \

Legal Definition of summary

: done immediately, concisely, and without usual formal procedures especially : used in or done by summary proceeding — compare plenary

Other Words from summary

summarily \ sə-​ˈmer-​ə-​lē How to pronounce summary (audio) \ adverb

Comments on summary

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