to·​tal | \ ˈtō-tᵊl How to pronounce total (audio) \

Definition of total

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1 : comprising or constituting a whole : entire the total amount
2 : absolute, utter a total failure a total stranger
3 : involving a complete and unified effort especially to achieve a desired effect total war total theater



Definition of total (Entry 2 of 4)

1 : a product of addition : sum
2 : an entire quantity : amount


totaled or totalled; totaling or totalling

Definition of total (Entry 3 of 4)

transitive verb

1 : to add up : compute
2 : to amount to : number
3 : to make a total wreck of : demolish specifically : to damage so badly that the cost of repairs exceeds the market value of the vehicle totaled the car



Definition of total (Entry 4 of 4)

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Choose the Right Synonym for total


whole, entire, total, all mean including everything or everyone without exception. whole implies that nothing has been omitted, ignored, abated, or taken away. read the whole book entire may suggest a state of completeness or perfection to which nothing can be added. the entire population was wiped out total implies that everything has been counted, weighed, measured, or considered. the total number of people present all may equal whole, entire, or total. all proceeds go to charity

Examples of total in a Sentence

Adjective a total lack of support a total eclipse of the sun He demanded total control of the project. What was the total amount of the bill? the total number of words The country has a total population of about 100 million. Noun a total of 25 square miles that's the total for our wheat harvest this year Verb He carefully totaled the bill. two and two total four
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective With the addition of nearly 3,000 more on Saturday, the total number of patients infected by the coronavirus rose to more than 66,000 people. Stu Woo, WSJ, "Rise in China Coronavirus Infections Raises Concerns About Epidemic’s Scope," 15 Feb. 2020 That brings the total number of cases globally to 67,097, and the global death toll to 1,526. Jessie Yeung, CNN, "Beijing orders mandatory coronavirus quarantines as US moves to evacuate passengers from cruise ship," 15 Feb. 2020 Six out of 10 of those folks are coming from out of state, with a total economic impact of $644 million. Richard Morin, azcentral, "Baseball big part of life, family for new Cactus League director Bridget Binsbacher," 15 Feb. 2020 The sellers made renovations to the home, including a total renovation of the kitchen. Dallas News, "Look inside a 1920s Fort Worth estate that would be a good fit in the French countryside," 15 Feb. 2020 Play the alternate total line and bet UNDER 5.5 (+135) for a better return on your investment. Esten Mclaren, USA TODAY Sportsbook Wire, "Philadelphia Flyers at Tampa Bay Lightning odds, picks and best bets," 15 Feb. 2020 The overall death rate, which takes into account increases in the total homeless population in the area, was up by over a third in that same period. Nick Givas, Fox News, "Homelessness in Los Angeles: Here are the statistics," 15 Feb. 2020 The program makes sure to emphasize that students leave the program bilingual, bi-literate, and with a strong sense of biculturalism, which Herod believes is key to a student’s total immersion in the program. Ryan Nickerson, Houston Chronicle, "Herod Elementary celebrates 25 years of dual language," 14 Feb. 2020 The show just premiered its third season Feb. 2, pulling in 26.7 million total viewers. Madeline Mitchell,, "'The Masked Singer' is about to tour a live show. And it's coming to Cincinnati.," 14 Feb. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun South Alabama is now one victory away from tying last year’s total of 17, and has recorded its most Sun Belt wins since the 2015 team finished 9-11. Creg Stephenson |, al, "South Alabama edges ULM 50-49 on KK Curry’s last-second putback," 16 Feb. 2020 Penske announced this year’s purse will rise $2 million to $15 million total for the field, and cars on qualification weekend will be equipped with an additional booster that will give them 45 more horsepower. Nathan Brown, Indianapolis Star, "Drivers react to Roger Penske's changes for IMS, 2020 Indy 500: 'I couldn't believe it'," 15 Feb. 2020 Prater and junior guard Isaiah Walker led the offensive charge Friday, combining for 34 of Wyoming's 39 first-half points and 43 total. Shelby Dermer,, "After 21-0 regular season, can Wyoming boys basketball win a DII state championship?," 15 Feb. 2020 Jacobson added 13 rebounds to his team-high scoring total, while Young (17 points), senior Prentiss Nixon (17) and sophomore Rasir Bolton (10 points) all scored in double figures. Nick Moyle,, "Texas’ NCAA hopes just about extinguished after lopsided loss to Iowa State," 15 Feb. 2020 The Nevada Democratic Party will load raw early vote totals by candidate for each precinct using a secure tabulation method. Grace Segers, Alexander Tin, CBS News, "How do the Nevada caucuses work?," 14 Feb. 2020 Hill finished the season with just five total tackles in seven appearances. Dallas News, "NFL writer says Cowboys had the worst 2019 rookie class in the NFC East," 13 Feb. 2020 Additional rainfall totals will be up to 0.5 inches from Florida to the Mid-Atlantic. NBC News, "Winter storm races east as bone-chilling cold blasts in behind," 13 Feb. 2020 Although the statistical fog is thick, indicators such as the fall in new cases outside Hubei and the total of suspected cases suggest that the rate of fresh infections may be trending lower. The Economist, "Viral slowdown How China’s coronavirus epidemic could hurt the world economy," 13 Feb. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The four-acre project includes 23,000 square feet of retail space and four offices totaling 23,000 square feet. Steve Brown, Dallas News, "Retail and office development on the way in Little Elm," 13 Feb. 2020 Spending is expected to total $27.4 billion, up 32% from last year’s record $20.7 billion. Kelly Tyko, USA TODAY, "Looking for cheap Valentine's Day date ideas? Here's where to find food deals and freebies," 13 Feb. 2020 Lee & Associates was awarded the leasing and management of five Houston office buildings totaling 430,000 square feet in 2019. Katherine Feser, Houston Chronicle, "Lee & Associates expands office leasing and management portfolio," 12 Feb. 2020 North Carolina: State game lands, which total about 2 million acres. Tennessee: Region 1: Natchez Trace WMA; Region 2: Cheatham and Yanahli WMAs; Region 3: Catoosa WMA and Bridgestone/Firestone Centennial Wilderness; Region 4: North Cumberland WMA. Brian Lovett, Field & Stream, "Best States to Hunt Spring Gobblers on Public Land," 12 Feb. 2020 While electricity consumed by California in 2017 did produce just over 60 million tons of CO2, that particular data point covers just one of many sources of greenhouse gas emissions emitted in the state, which total about 430 million tons a year. Wes Siler, Outside Online, "Emails Show DOI Falsified Fire Data for Political Ends," 7 Feb. 2020 The city’s hold on a marquee employer with global brand recognition - and an office-and-research footprint totaling 1.25 million square feet - was uncertain. Michelle Jarboe, cleveland, "Sherwin-Williams will stay in Cleveland, move R&D to Brecksville, sources say," 5 Feb. 2020 The new development, with seven buildings totaling about 128,000 square feet, is being proposed for a vacant 92-acre parcel at 16778 W. Coffee Road, according to plans filed with the city. Tom Daykin, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Drexel Building Supply plans to develop a large showroom and distribution center in New Berlin," 3 Feb. 2020 The project will span two buildings and an open air canopy, totaling 62,000 square feet. Priscilla Totiyapungprasert, azcentral, "Mesa is getting a huge entertainment destination. Here's what we know about The Revelry," 31 Jan. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb There are about a dozen seats total at the restaurant, which is set up predominantly for takeout and catering orders. Ellen Fort, Sunset Magazine, "Juicy Rotisserie Chicken Spot from L.A.’s Kismet Team Is Now Open," 17 Jan. 2020 Considering Stadia is due to launch next week with 12 games total... Hayden Dingman, PCWorld, "Microsoft Xbox X019: Age of Empires IV, new Rare and Obsidian games, xCloud on PC, and more," 14 Nov. 2019 Hong Kong's money deposits total more than $1.7 trillion, based on the most recent statistics from Hong Kong's Monetary Authority. Laura He, CNN, "Macao might be China's 'good kid.' But Hong Kong still has the financial clout," 21 Dec. 2019 But his time in New England only spanned one game and 11 days total, as a lawsuit surfaced a week after his signing that accused him of rape. Scott Gleeson, USA TODAY, "Antonio Brown apologizes to Robert Kraft for 'bad media and the drama'," 19 Nov. 2019 And Republicans are just a sliver of that, holding 21 seats total – eight in the Senate, and 13 in the House. Lindsay Schnell, USA TODAY, "Republican women launch 'Conservative Squad' to take on AOC, progressives in D.C.," 12 Dec. 2019 With a very sharp knife, cut the log crosswise into slices about ¼ inch (6 cm) thick, forming about 60 slices total, placing them about 1 inch (2.5 cm) apart on the prepared baking trays. Wolfgang Puck,, "Chocolate coconut cookies have intriguing spice notes," 11 Dec. 2019 Georgia hadn't held an opponent to a negative rushing total since limiting Florida to minus-19 yards in a 24-20 victory in 2011. Mark Inabinett |, al, "SEC Football by the Numbers: Top 10 from Week 13," 26 Nov. 2019 That rushing total tied Darrell Thompson for the eighth-highest single-game total for a Gophers freshman. Andy Greder, Twin Cities, "Gophers running back Shannon Brooks ‘ready to go’ at Purdue," 23 Sep. 2019

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1557, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1716, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1601, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for total


Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Medieval Latin totalis, from Latin totus whole, entire

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Time Traveler for total

Time Traveler

The first known use of total was in the 14th century

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Statistics for total

Last Updated

18 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Total.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Feb. 2020.

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How to pronounce total (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of total

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: complete or absolute
: after everything or everyone is counted



English Language Learners Definition of total (Entry 2 of 3)

: the number or amount of everything counted



English Language Learners Definition of total (Entry 3 of 3)

: to produce (a total) when added together
: to add numbers together to find out the total
US : to damage (something, such as a car) so badly that it is not worth repairing


to·​tal | \ ˈtō-tᵊl How to pronounce total (audio) \

Kids Definition of total

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : being such to the fullest degree total ruin
2 : making up the whole I collected the total amount.
3 : of or relating to the whole of something a total eclipse of the sun
4 : making use of every means to do something total war

Other Words from total

totally adverb



Kids Definition of total (Entry 2 of 3)

: the entire number or amount counted : sum


totaled or totalled; totaling or totalling

Kids Definition of total (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : to add up Did you total the scores?
2 : to amount to : number Donations totaled five hundred dollars.

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Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for total

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with total

Spanish Central: Translation of total

Nglish: Translation of total for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of total for Arabic Speakers

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