swipe

1 of 2

noun

plural swipes
1
a
: a strong sweeping blow
a swipe of a paw
… he took a swipe at the ball before it stopped moving, a two stroke penalty.Ken Fidlin
b
: a sliding gesture (as across the touch screen of a mobile device)
In this day and age, with information available at the push of a button or a swipe, Avdeev's situation is remarkable and rare.Christopher Miller
Vividly colored orbs appear from time to time, sometimes slowly, often in a mad rush, and seemingly at random. You can move them around with a finger swipeDavid Price
2
: a sharp often critical remark
took a parting swipe at management
Below the picture, the text took a swipe at Perdue's claims …Thomas Whiteside

swipe

2 of 2

verb

swiped; swiping; swipes

intransitive verb

1
: to strike or move with a sweeping motion
Among carnivores like the great cats, wolves and hyenas, cubs pretend to capture prey: stalking, pouncing, biting, swiping at objects with claws extended.Natalie Angier
2
: to operate something (such as a function on a mobile device) by sliding one's finger while pressing against a touch screen
On the plus side, it does come with extra large icons on the home screen, and a button bar that you swipe up from the bottom for easy access to video tutorials, troubleshooting tools and 24/7 phone support.Jennifer Jolly

transitive verb

1
: to strike or wipe (something or someone) with a sweeping motion
Pallone mimicked Rose's gestures in rebuttal—and, perhaps inadvertently, swiped Rose on the cheek near his left eye.Steve Wulf
One model boasted a small rectangular "rest" that kept the head from touching the counter when it was laid down and also sported a useful notch for swiping the rim of a jar or bowl.Lisa McManus
2
: to activate or control (something) with a swiping gesture
Tinder allows users to swipe their phone screen to the right when they see a picture of someone they like. …The Mercury (South Africa)
3
: steal, pilfer
In a jailhouse interview in Russia, a former uranium worker explains why he swiped nuclear material to sell: He needed money for a new fridge and stove.David Corn
4
: to slide (a card with a magnetic strip or bar code) through a slot in a reading device so that information contained in the strip or code can be processed (as in making a purchase)
Instead of swiping your credit card, or inserting its chip to complete the payment process, contactless technology lets you make a purchase by placing or hovering your card or phone near a payment terminal, a.k.a. the credit card machine.Geoffrey Morrison

Examples of swipe in a Sentence

Noun She took a swipe at her former company in her latest column. a swipe of the cat's paw Verb The cat swiped the dog across the nose. They swiped some candy from the store. The cashier swiped the credit card and gave it back to me.
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
Related Content Visa and Mastercard ended their long swipe fee battle with a $30 billion settlement Netflix and other streamers can charge you forever. Rocio Fabbro, Quartz, 16 May 2024 Shreve and Speedy especially have taken swipes at each other’s past votes and proposals, including Shreve’s mayoral public safety proposal on guns and Speedy’s past votes to raise the state’s gas tax. Brittany Carloni, The Indianapolis Star, 7 May 2024 See all Example Sentences for swipe 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'swipe.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Noun

probably alteration of sweep

First Known Use

Noun

1788, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

circa 1825, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of swipe was in 1788

Dictionary Entries Near swipe

Cite this Entry

“Swipe.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/swipe. Accessed 26 May. 2024.

Kids Definition

swipe

1 of 2 verb
swiped; swiping
1
a
: to strike or wipe with a sweeping motion
b
: to operate something (such as a function on a mobile device) by sliding one's finger while pressing against a touch screen
2
: pilfer
3
: to slide (a card with a magnetic strip or bar code) through a slot in a reading device so that information stored on the strip can be processed (as in making a purchase)

swipe

2 of 2 noun
1
: a strong sweeping blow
2
: a sliding gesture (as across the touch screen of a mobile device)

More from Merriam-Webster on swipe

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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