telescope

noun, often attributive
tele·​scope | \ ˈte-lə-ˌskōp How to pronounce telescope (audio) \

Definition of telescope

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a usually tubular optical instrument for viewing distant objects by means of the refraction of light rays through a lens or the reflection of light rays by a concave mirror — compare reflector, refractor
2 : any of various tubular magnifying optical instruments

telescope

verb
telescoped; telescoping

Definition of telescope (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to become forced together lengthwise with one part entering another as the result of collision
2 : to slide or pass one within another like the cylindrical sections of a collapsible hand telescope
3 : to become compressed or condensed

transitive verb

1 : to cause to telescope

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Examples of telescope in a Sentence

Noun The rings of Saturn can be seen through a telescope. Verb for dramatic purposes, the film telescopes the years over which the events occurred into a few short months
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The #GreatConjunction of #Jupiter and #Saturn thru my telescope just after 6pm. Shelby Stewart, Chron, "Here's what you missed from Monday's 'Christmas Star'," 22 Dec. 2020 The two planets had a more recent conjunction that was just as close, Dr. Hartigan said, in 1623, only 14 years after Galileo made his first telescope. Robert Lee Hotz, WSJ, "A Christmas Star? Jupiter and Saturn Alignment Sparks Comparisons," 20 Dec. 2020 Get your telescope ready for this Astral Trio set by Path McGrath. Kiana Murden, CNN Underscored, "42 gifts that support BIPOC-owned brands this holiday season," 16 Dec. 2020 The actual business end of the telescope, where radio waves were sensed, was an instrument platform suspended high above it by cables strung from three towers. John Timmer, Ars Technica, "Big dish of Arecibo observatory has reached the end of the line," 19 Nov. 2020 The solar system is putting on a show this week with all seven planets visible in the sky -- so grab your telescope and marvel at this rare wonder. CNN, "Start your week smart: Covid-19, Georgia, Zuckerberg, DACA, spacewalk," 15 Nov. 2020 To get a more accurate estimate, NASA deployed a jumbo jet carrying a nine-foot, 17-ton telescope called SOFIA, or the Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy. Rasha Aridi, Smithsonian Magazine, "The Moon Has More Water and Ice Hidden All Over Its Surface Than Originally Predicted," 27 Oct. 2020 Saturn will appear slightly above and to the left of Jupiter, and even looks as close to the planet as some of its own moons, visible with binoculars or a telescope. Sophie Lewis, CBS News, "Great conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn captured in stunning photos from around the world," 22 Dec. 2020 With binoculars or a small telescope, viewers may even be able to see Jupiter’s four moons. Laura Furr Mericas, Chron, "Here's how you can see the 'Christmas Star' in the night sky," 19 Dec. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The only telescope an amateur astronomer will ever need. Cameron Johnson, Popular Mechanics, "How To Get Started in Astronomy," 10 Nov. 2020 Scientists are working on developing new tests that could pinpoint the signal’s origin, including continuing to aim the Parkes telescope at Proxima. Nadia Drake, Science, "Alien hunters detect mysterious radio signal from nearby star," 18 Dec. 2020 The only telescope an amateur astronomer will ever need. Cameron Johnson, Popular Mechanics, "How To Get Started in Astronomy," 10 Nov. 2020 The only telescope an amateur astronomer will ever need. Cameron Johnson, Popular Mechanics, "How To Get Started in Astronomy," 10 Nov. 2020 The only telescope an amateur astronomer will ever need. Cameron Johnson, Popular Mechanics, "How To Get Started in Astronomy," 10 Nov. 2020 The only telescope an amateur astronomer will ever need. Cameron Johnson, Popular Mechanics, "How To Get Started in Astronomy," 10 Nov. 2020 The only telescope an amateur astronomer will ever need. Cameron Johnson, Popular Mechanics, "How To Get Started in Astronomy," 10 Nov. 2020 The only telescope an amateur astronomer will ever need. Jennifer Leman, Popular Mechanics, "Three Scientists Shaped How We Think About Black Holes. Now They Have a Nobel Prize.," 6 Oct. 2020

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

Noun

1650, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1866, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for telescope

Noun

New Latin telescopium, from Greek tēleskopos farseeing, from tēle- tele- + skopos watcher; akin to Greek skopein to look — more at spy

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Time Traveler for telescope

Time Traveler

The first known use of telescope was in 1650

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Statistics for telescope

Last Updated

7 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Telescope.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/telescope. Accessed 21 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for telescope

telescope

noun
How to pronounce telescope (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of telescope

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a device shaped like a long tube that you look through in order to see things that are far away

telescope

verb

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

: to become shorter by having one section slide inside another somewhat larger section
: to make (something) shorter in length or time

telescope

noun
tele·​scope | \ ˈte-lə-ˌskōp How to pronounce telescope (audio) \

Kids Definition of telescope

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a piece of equipment shaped like a long tube that has lenses for viewing objects at a distance and especially for observing objects in outer space

telescope

verb
telescoped; telescoping

Kids Definition of telescope (Entry 2 of 2)

: to slide or force one part into another

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Comments on telescope

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