tem·​plate | \ ˈtem-plət How to pronounce template (audio) \

Definition of template

1a(1) : a gauge, pattern, or mold (such as a thin plate or board) used as a guide to the form of a piece being made
(2) : a molecule (as of DNA) that serves as a pattern for the generation of another macromolecule (such as messenger RNA)
2 : something that establishes or serves as a pattern
3 : a short piece or block placed horizontally in a wall under a beam to distribute its weight or pressure (as over a door)

Examples of template in a Sentence

The software includes templates for common marketing documents like pamphlets and flyers.
Recent Examples on the Web At Point Reyes, Christine Beekman, acting chief of interpretation at the park, worked with rangers to publish a new set of camping protocols that could become a template for other park districts. Tom Stienstra, SFChronicle.com, "Hike-in campsites reopening around the Bay Area," 7 July 2020 Soon, the girlboss ideal became a template for marketing and writing about powerful women in virtually every industry. Amanda Mull, The Atlantic, "What Comes After the Girlboss?," 25 June 2020 Ken Griffin, the chief executive of investment firm Citadel LLC, who contributed $7.5 million, said the program could serve as a template for other cities facing similar issues with student internet access. James Rundle, WSJ, "Chicago Hopes Broadband Plan Could Help Other Cities Address Digital Divide," 9 July 2020 By taking local infection dynamics into account, the roller derby guidelines could end up serving as a template for how other leagues—including those for recreational, youth, and high school sports—could safely come back. Christie Aschwanden, Wired, "Women’s Roller Derby Has a Plan for Covid, and It Kicks Ass," 2 July 2020 The work could eventually lead to a new, improved control template for dynamic flying robots. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "Undulating their bodies keeps flying snakes from tumbling out of control," 2 July 2020 The plan by the climate committee, which cannot write bills but only recommend policy, is mostly meant as a template for what climate policy could look like if Democrats control all levers of power in 2021. Abby Smith, Washington Examiner, "Daily on Energy: Democrats try to please everybody with climate plan," 30 June 2020 Even a quick glance at the history of My Little Pony fandom serves as a valuable template for how not to build an online community. Kaitlyn Tiffany, The Atlantic, "My Little Pony Fans Are Ready to Admit They Have a Nazi Problem," 23 June 2020 Unfortunately for workers, companies might adapt before the template can be vanquished. Kyle Chayka, The New Yorker, "How the Coronavirus Will Reshape Architecture," 17 June 2020

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

1677, in the meaning defined at sense 3

History and Etymology for template

alteration of earlier templet in same senses (by assimilation to plate entry 1), of uncertain origin

Note: The form templet has been compared with French templet "implement on a loom for stretching cloth during weaving," a diminutive of temple in the same sense, though there is no apparent explanation for the very dissimilar senses. The relation of sense 3 (attested earlier) to sense 1 is unclear.

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Time Traveler for template

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The first known use of template was in 1677

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Last Updated

26 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Template.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/template. Accessed 3 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for template


How to pronounce template (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of template

: a shape or pattern that is cut out of a hard material (such as metal or plastic) and used to make the same shape and pattern in other pieces of material
computers : a computer document that has the basic format of something (such as a business letter, chart, graph, etc.) and that can be used many different times
: something that is used as an example of how to do, make, or achieve something


tem·​plate | \ ˈtem-plət How to pronounce template (audio) \

Medical Definition of template

1 also templet : a gauge, pattern, or mold used as a guide to the form of a piece being made
2 : a molecule (as of DNA) that serves as a pattern for the synthesis of another macromolecule (as messenger RNA)

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More from Merriam-Webster on template

Spanish Central: Translation of template

Nglish: Translation of template for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of template for Arabic Speakers

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