switch·​board | \ ˈswich-ˌbȯrd How to pronounce switchboard (audio) \

Definition of switchboard

: an apparatus (as in a telephone exchange) consisting of a panel on which are mounted electric switches so arranged that a number of circuits may be connected, combined, and controlled

Examples of switchboard in a Sentence

She used to work as a switchboard operator.

Recent Examples on the Web

Toll-takers on Bay Area bridges soon will go the way of switchboard operators, milkmen and town criers — and a meeting Wednesday night in San Francisco inched them just a bit closer to their expiration date. Rick Hurd, The Mercury News, "Got FasTrak? Automated toll collecting coming to all Bay Area bridges," 5 Sep. 2019 Constituents can reach their representatives by calling the congressional switchboard at 202-224-3121. Kelli Bender, PEOPLE.com, "The Simple Way You Can Help Protect Sharks from Inhumane Deaths This Shark Week," 29 July 2019 In Price’s radical view, a book might act something like a switchboard, connecting readers who connect to it. Dan Chiasson, The New Yorker, "Reader, I Googled It," 26 Aug. 2019 Someone called in the threat to the university’s switchboard at 9:37 a.m. It was directed at the John R. Roach Center for Liberal Arts, a classroom building at Summit and Cleveland avenues. Mara H. Gottfried, Twin Cities, "Nothing suspicious found after University of St. Thomas receives bomb threat," 20 Aug. 2019 This Spanish period drama set in 1920s Madrid focuses on four women’s lives and friendships as the first female switchboard operators. Nina Zafar, Washington Post, "What to watch on TV tonight: ‘GLOW’ returns to Netflix for Season 3.," 9 Aug. 2019 The phone number provided by Gomez is to the United States Capitol switchboard, whose operator directs callers to the Senate office of their choice. Mitchell Peters, Billboard, "Selena Gomez Outraged Over 'Inhumane' Treatment of Children at U.S. Border Patrol Facilities," 30 June 2019 The UW Health urgent care centers on Madison's east side resumed normal hours Saturday, according to Ryan Stoor from the UW hospital switchboard. Alex Groth, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Power restored to thousands after explosion, fires at substations in Madison," 20 July 2019 The working-class future may be further clouded by the loss of what were once respectable, upwardly mobile jobs — postal workers, switchboard operators, manufacturing laborers, computer operators, bank tellers, and travel agents. Joel Kotkin, National Review, "The Return to Serfdom," 25 July 2019

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

1873, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for switchboard

Last Updated

14 Sep 2019

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Time Traveler for switchboard

The first known use of switchboard was in 1873

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More Definitions for switchboard



English Language Learners Definition of switchboard

: a system used to connect telephone calls with many separate phone lines in a building


switch·​board | \ ˈswich-ˌbȯrd How to pronounce switchboard (audio) \

Kids Definition of switchboard

: a panel for controlling the operation of a number of electric circuits

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More from Merriam-Webster on switchboard

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with switchboard

Spanish Central: Translation of switchboard

Nglish: Translation of switchboard for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about switchboard

Comments on switchboard

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fear of the number 13

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