tele·​gram | \ ˈte-lə-ˌgram How to pronounce telegram (audio) , Southern also -grəm \

Definition of telegram

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a telegraphic dispatch


tele·​gram | \ ˈte-lə-ˌgram How to pronounce telegram (audio) \
telegrammed; telegramming

Definition of telegram (Entry 2 of 2)

Examples of telegram in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Two weeks later, the War Department made the name official, sending a telegram to the secretary of the local Chamber of Commerce confirming that Henry Benning would get his base. J. Davis Winkie, The New Republic, "How the Confederates Conquered America’s “Home of the Infantry”," 26 June 2020 All of the proceeds from the telegrams go towards programs that bring comfort to vulnerable members of the community as well as the working artists who are unable to work due to the COVID-19 pandemic. NBC News, "Louisiana parents sue to get children out of juvenile detention as coronavirus spreads," 14 May 2020 The next thing Burns found was a Western Union telegram dated May 15, barely a month later. John D'anna, azcentral, "How a World War I telegram connected a young Army private to Arizona Sen. John McCain," 11 May 2020 At Kent City Hall, Mayor LeRoy Satrom sifted through telegrams from people who had learned the details on their nightly news. Paula Schleis,, "'An affront to Americans everywhere:' The world watches investigation after Kent State shootings," 5 May 2020 Zvulun says that the opera's orchestra musicians might soon be taking part in the telegrams as well. Ryan Bergeron, CNN, "An opera company troupe is keeping busy recording 'singing telegrams' for health care workers, hospital patients and seniors," 25 Apr. 2020 Adams writes in a sort of brusque, Runyonesque shorthand; every sentence has the air of an urgent and dismissive telegram. Sadie Stein, Town & Country, "Cindy Adams, New York's Queen of Gossip, Keeps Everyone's Secrets," 5 Dec. 2019 Russian President Vladimir Putin sent a telegram wishing Johnson a full and quick recovery, the Kremlin said. Anchorage Daily News, "UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson is receiving oxygen but isn’t on a ventilator, officials say," 7 Apr. 2020 The soldiers built forts, installed telegram lines, constructed roads and mapped early Texas. Marina Starleaf Riker,, "‘They helped build the nation’: San Antonio celebrates history of the Buffalo Soldiers," 12 Jan. 2020

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


circa 1852, in the meaning defined above


1860, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for telegram

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The first known use of telegram was circa 1852

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Last Updated

9 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Telegram.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 11 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for telegram


How to pronounce telegram (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of telegram

: a message that is sent by telegraph


tele·​gram | \ ˈte-lə-ˌgram How to pronounce telegram (audio) \

Kids Definition of telegram

: a message sent by telegraph

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More from Merriam-Webster on telegram

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with telegram

Spanish Central: Translation of telegram

Nglish: Translation of telegram for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of telegram for Arabic Speakers

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