noun, often attributive
tele·​vi·​sion | \ˈte-lə-ˌvi-zhən, especially British ˌte-lə-ˈ \

Definition of television 

1 : an electronic system of transmitting transient images of fixed or moving objects together with sound over a wire or through space by apparatus that converts light and sound into electrical waves and reconverts them into visible light rays and audible sound

2 : a television receiving set

3a : the television broadcasting industry

b : television as a medium of communication

Examples of television in a Sentence

people who turn on the television the minute they walk in the door

Recent Examples on the Web

The three leading candidates in the Democratic primary for Baltimore County executive spent a significant amount of money on television ads before the vote. Pamela Wood,, "Baltimore County Democrats spent nearly $1.7M on TV ads in primary," 14 July 2018 The American Bankers Association, which has spent months overhauling its political operations, for the first time is running television ads in support of incumbent lawmakers from both parties who have backed industry-friendly policies. Tory Newmyer, Washington Post, "The Finance 202: Mnuchin is in denial about the pain Trump's tariffs are inducing," 13 July 2018 Scott also has a television ad depicting Nelson as a toady of party bosses for his history of voting for all Democratic presidents’ judicial candidates. Anthony Man,, "Republicans try to make Supreme Court fight unpleasant for Bill Nelson," 11 July 2018 Kevin Nicholson's political past just popped up in a negative television ad launched Tuesday by a group supporting his Republican Party rival, Leah Vukmir. Bill Glauber, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Group backing Leah Vukmir launches negative TV ad against Kevin Nicholson in Wisconsin Senate race," 10 July 2018 Judicial Crisis Network, a conservative advocacy group, has already posted a website — — and is airing television ads. New York Times, "Senate Democrats Come Out Swinging in Long-Shot Fight to Block Kavanaugh," 10 July 2018 On the Republican side, conservative groups had already reserved time for television ads in states whose Democratic senators might be vulnerable. David G. Savage,, "Brett Kavanaugh, a Washington veteran, is Trump's second pick for the Supreme Court," 10 July 2018 Kemp has garnered his own strong criticism — and national headlines — for a series of provocative television ads ran during the primary. NBC News, "Secret tape recordings rock Georgia governor race," 9 July 2018 The media buy included $17,100 for television ads on Topeka-based WIBW-TV through July 10, according to the station’s disclosure to the Federal Communications Commission. Bryan Lowry, kansascity, "Kansas candidate’s father spends $100,000 in effort to get son elected to Congress," 3 July 2018

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

1900, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for television

French télévision, from télé- tele- + vision vision

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Statistics for television

Last Updated

10 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for television

The first known use of television was in 1900

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English Language Learners Definition of television

: an electronic system of sending images and sounds by a wire or through space

: a piece of equipment with a screen that receives images and sounds sent by television

: programs that are broadcast by television


tele·​vi·​sion | \ˈte-lə-ˌvi-zhən \

Kids Definition of television

1 : an electronic system of sending images and sound over a wire or through space by devices that change light and sound into electrical signals and then change these back into light and sound

2 : a piece of equipment with a screen and speakers that reproduces images and sound

3 : programs that are broadcast by television

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Comments on television

What made you want to look up television? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


playful or foolish behavior

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