telegraph

noun
tele·​graph | \ ˈte-lə-ˌgraf \

Definition of telegraph

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an apparatus for communication at a distance by coded signals especially : an apparatus, system, or process for communication at a distance by electric transmission over wire
2 : telegram

telegraph

verb
telegraphed; telegraphing; telegraphs

Definition of telegraph (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to send or communicate by or as if by telegraph
b : to send a telegram to
c : to send by means of a telegraphic order
2 : to make known by signs especially unknowingly and in advance

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Other Words from telegraph

Verb

telegrapher \ tə-​ˈle-​grə-​fər \ noun
telegraphist \ tə-​ˈle-​grə-​fist \ noun

Examples of telegraph in a Sentence

Noun

I sent the message by telegraph.

Verb

He telegraphed a message to her. Please telegraph when you get there. Please telegraph me when you get there. The look on her face telegraphed bad news. He lost the boxing match because he was telegraphing his punches.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The invention of the telegraph before the Civil War meant that these warnings could be transmitted widely and quickly. Brian Macquarrie, BostonGlobe.com, "Winter weather helped uncover a dark past on Gallops Island," 3 May 2018 The grandfather of one of my best friends helped lay the first telegraph line from Fort Worth to El Paso, contending with hostile Indians along the way. WSJ, "Living Memories Have a Long Reach in Our Young Country," 7 Jan. 2019 Spring’s plethora of veils telegraph all kinds of associations. Steff Yotka, Vogue, "The Top 10 Accessories Trends of Spring 2019," 16 Oct. 2018 Modern scholars see many parallels between the telegraph of Cooley’s day and the Internet—an e-mail stored in a server is the modern version of a telegram. Joseph O’neill, The New Yorker, "The Mail," 21 June 2018 Sweets laden with poppy seed telegraph Jewish heritage. András Szántó, Condé Nast Traveler, "Why Budapest Is Europe's Unlikely Capital of Hedonism," 29 Aug. 2018 Turbidity currents broke telegraph cables after Grand Banks, Fritz points out. Rob Goodier, Popular Mechanics, "How Climate Change Could Break the Internet," 19 July 2018 The colonial powers had strong telegraph systems all over the world, in India, China, Africa, North America. Fox News, "What threats face America's electrical grid?," 23 Apr. 2018 Jay Gould duked it out for control of Western Union and the nation’s telegraph system. Jeremy C. Young, Houston Chronicle, "Why a boycott of Facebook is a bad idea," 1 Apr. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The chancellor’s job listing, posted last year by search firm Isaacson, Miller, called for a strategist who could telegraph CUNY’s successes to the world, increase graduate numbers and position students for high-value careers. Melissa Korn, WSJ, "CUNY Names Queens College President Félix Matos Rodríguez as Chancellor," 13 Feb. 2019 Warren’s effort to address questions about her ancestry and the release of the video are her latest moves telegraphing a likely presidential run in 2020. Bob Salsberg, The Seattle Times, "Sen. Warren: DNA test shows I have Native American heritage," 15 Oct. 2018 Regulators in the Obama administration also wanted to recalibrate the leverage ratio, but the proposals under Mr. Quarles’ watch go beyond what his predecessors telegraphed. Ryan Tracy, WSJ, "A Simple Rule Has Constrained Bankers’ Freedom. Now It Is Getting ‘Retooled’," 7 May 2018 Some others played outsized roles in their parties’ campaigns, though not as candidates, and were reluctant to telegraph their 2020 intentions before the 2018 fight was decided. Jill Colvin, The Seattle Times, "Added Democratic ranks pose threat to Trump governing agenda," 7 Nov. 2018 But never before have celebrities and brands had the ability to telegraph their dubious advice on dieting into the phones of millions of impressionable young people at once. Allie Conti, Marie Claire, "How Are Appetite Suppressing Lollipops Still a Thing?," 5 Oct. 2018 Rather, the game sticks to comic and film canon so firmly that whenever a new character appears, their next actions are alarmingly telegraphed. Sam Machkovech, Ars Technica, "Spider-Man PS4 review: Does whatever a spider can—and then some," 4 Sep. 2018 There’s a revealing doubleness to Shallow Hal—and one that has very little to do with the True Beauty stuff the Farrellys tried so hard to telegraph in their rom-com. Megan Garber, The Atlantic, "When Beauty Is a Troll," 22 Apr. 2018 Opting to get rid of a character — and the main character, at that — sooner than telegraphed is something the old show would never do. Bryan Bishop, The Verge, "The Walking Dead just pulled its best switcheroo in years," 29 Oct. 2018

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

Noun

1793, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1806, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for telegraph

Noun

French télégraphe, from télé- tele- (from Greek tēle-) + -graphe -graph

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Statistics for telegraph

Last Updated

18 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for telegraph

The first known use of telegraph was in 1793

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More Definitions for telegraph

telegraph

noun

English Language Learners Definition of telegraph

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: an old-fashioned system of sending messages over long distances by using wires and electrical signals
: a device used for sending or receiving messages by telegraph

telegraph

verb

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

: to send (a message) by telegraph
: to send a telegram to (someone)
: to make (something that you are about to do or say) obvious or apparent by the way you move, look, etc.

telegraph

noun
tele·​graph | \ ˈte-lə-ˌgraf \

Kids Definition of telegraph

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: an electric device or system for sending messages by a code over connecting wires

telegraph

verb
telegraphed; telegraphing

Kids Definition of telegraph (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to send by code over connecting wires
2 : to send a telegram to

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More from Merriam-Webster on telegraph

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with telegraph

Spanish Central: Translation of telegraph

Nglish: Translation of telegraph for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of telegraph for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about telegraph

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