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 Its offense ranks in the top 10 in the country in a handful of categories, including points per game (48.3) and total offense (521.9 yards). Stephen Means, cleveland, "Where will Ohio State football be ranked in the initial College Football Playoff rankings?," 5 Nov. 2019 There have been slight improvements in total offense, scoring offense and scoring defense. Iliana Limón Romero,, "FSU fires Willie Taggart after loss to rival Miami," 3 Nov. 2019 Host Norfolk State held Morgan State to 12 first downs and 153 yards of total offense as the Spartans shut out the Bears, 48-0, in college football Saturday. Baltimore Sun Staff,, "State football: Morgan State blasted by Norfolk State, 48-0; Bowie, Salisbury remain unbeaten," 2 Nov. 2019 In that ‘17 game, the Tommies held the Oles to 9 rushing yards and 71 yards of total offense. Bob Sansevere, Twin Cities, "Bob Sansevere: It wasn’t 222-0, but St. Thomas still routs St. Olaf," 2 Nov. 2019 The Yale offense put up a season-best 580 yards of total offense and rolled to a 45-10 win over Columbia in an Ivy League game on Saturday at Yale Bowl in New Haven. Staff And Wire Reports,, "State college football: Yale blasts Columbia; Wesleyan wins in overtime," 2 Nov. 2019 The Redskins defense had a stalwart effort as Loveland produced -2 yards rushing and just 100 yards of total offense. Alexander Harrison,, "Live updates: Week 10 high school football scores in Cincinnati, Kentucky, Indiana," 1 Nov. 2019 Suddenly can't let go Until recently, your significant other was a total flake about technology. Kim Komando, USA TODAY, "5 digital signs that your significant other is cheating," 31 Oct. 2019 Los Angeles is ranked 17th in the league in total offense and 28th in rushing. Joe Reedy, The Denver Post, "Ken Whisenhunt fired as Chargers offensive coordinator," 28 Oct. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Ex Novo has committed to giving $100,000 total to four organizations: Friends of the Children, International Justice Mission, Impact NW and Mercy Corps. Andre Meunier, oregonlive, "Ex Novo took beers, benevolence and created something new: Portland Breweries Series," 7 Nov. 2019 Related Stories Line intact: Entering Thursday’s game, the Raiders’ projected starting offensive line before this season had played a total of 10 snaps together in eight games. Matt Kawahara,, "Raiders’ Jon Gruden on a cold streak with challenges," 7 Nov. 2019 Anker PowerPort Strip 6 surge protector - 1280J, 6.6-foot cord, 6x AC outlets, 3x USB-A, 18W USB total for $27.99 at Amazon (use code: ANKERPP6 - normally $35.99). Ars Staff, Ars Technica, "Dealmaster: A bunch of Anker chargers and cables are on sale at Amazon today," 5 Nov. 2019 Winter Park’s Jevannie Zepeda had a 265 game and an 873 total as the No. Buddy Collings,, "Oviedo, Apopka, OCU alive in FHSAA state bowling," 5 Nov. 2019 This was eventually deemed a rather slender thread to justify the dispatch of over 500,000, and ultimately a total of nearly 2 million, conscripts to a combat zone where 58,000 Americans would die. Conrad Black, National Review, "Richard Nixon’s ‘Silent Majority’ Plan," 5 Nov. 2019 Rodwell was a peripheral figure with the Cityzens, playing a total of 16 games for the club, before being shipped off to Sunderland in 2014., "Roma Decide Against Signing Jack Rodwell After Midfielder Fails to Impress on Trial," 4 Nov. 2019 The Sandwich, as it is increasingly known, is only being sold at 150 locations across the US, out of more than 3,000 total. Natasha Frost, Quartzy, "Americans are waiting hours to eat the Popeyes chicken sandwich," 3 Nov. 2019 My favorites are more in the brown realm: Boardwalk (a total '90s brown) and Beach Waves (a greige). Devon Abelman, Allure, "The Tarte Color Splash Lipstick Lets You Have Matte, But Moisturized, Lips All Winter Long," 1 Nov. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The lawsuit sought delinquent payments totaling $1,535 as of Oct. 1. Washington Post, "Kansas Rep. Watkins pays account after foreclosure lawsuit," 8 Nov. 2019 Bevin lagged well behind the vote totals for other statewide Republican candidates, who swept Kentucky's races for attorney general, secretary of state, auditor, treasurer and agriculture commissioner. Bruce Schreiner,, "Democrat Andy Beshear claims victory in Kentucky governor’s race, begins transition as Republican Gov. Matt Bevin refuses to concede," 6 Nov. 2019 Two Bishop Moore players, senior Jacob Hair (77-75) and sophomore Chase Gullikson (74-78), totaled 152 for two days and finished in a four-way tied for 11th. Mike Gramajo,, "Ainsley Mann is Bishop Moore’s first individual state golf champ," 6 Nov. 2019 In the past year, Connecticut residents made more than 33,000 calls total to the state domestic violence hotline, the hotlines of the coalition’s member organizations and a Spanish-language hotline. Amanda Blanco,, "New domestic violence hotline is first to offer texting, live online chatting," 4 Nov. 2019 Edwards caught eight passes for 83 yards in the Gamecocks' 41-21 loss to Tennessee last week to raise his career reception total to 211. Mark Inabinett |, al, "Vanderbilt at South Carolina by the numbers: Gamecocks go for 11th in a row," 2 Nov. 2019 At full strength on the next play, Young bolted by a cursory Northwestern blocking effort to take down Smith and push his season sacks total to 9.5. Nathan Baird, cleveland, "Does Ohio State football’s defense have a problem stopping the run? Buckeye Rewatch," 21 Oct. 2019 The new contract includes wage increases totaling $1.55 to $1.65 an hour over three years, as well as improved health care benefits and pension contributions. Neal E. Boudette, New York Times, "G.M. and U.A.W. Reach Deal That Could End Strike," 16 Oct. 2019 The discovery of 20 tiny moons circling Saturn has knocked Jupiter out of the top spot in the moon race; the new additions bring Saturn’s total to 82 moons, while Jupiter has just 79. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, "Researchers Discovered 20 Tiny New Moons Circling Saturn," 9 Oct. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb Of Jesus Is King's total unit start of 264,000, album sales comprise 109,000, TEA units equal 3,000 and SEA units total 151,000. Jim Asker, Billboard, "Kanye West's 'Jesus Is King' Crowns Top Christian Albums, Top Gospel Albums Charts," 4 Nov. 2019 The runners get credit for any yardage total over eight. Khobi Price,, "FAU in need of better offensive balance with conference play on the horizon," 24 Sep. 2019 This also brings the domestic terrorism total closer to the 100 arrests made in relation to international terrorism. Ellen Mcgirt, Fortune, "How Are You Keeping Your Hispanic Employees Safe?: raceAhead," 5 Aug. 2019 Sear the pork on all sides, about 2 minutes per side or 12 minutes total, until a golden brown crust forms. Jessica Yadegaran, The Mercury News, "Allison Arevalo recipe: Pappardelle with Roasted Pork and Mushrooms," 10 Sep. 2019 The moms have 18 kids total, ages 3 to 36, and 14 children in school. Sonja Haller, USA TODAY, "Moms celebrate back-to-school with 'wine' and doughnuts. 'We will be juuuuuuust fine'," 14 Aug. 2019 Indiana has 12 casinos total, leaving Rising Star Casino in Rising Sun, Indiana, and Majestic Star Casino in Gary as the two casinos in the state without licenses to conduct sports wagering. Andrew Clark, Indianapolis Star, "Indiana sports betting: Here's a list of leagues and events you'll be able to bet on," 4 May 2019 After scoring on a 1-yard rush in the opening quarter, Sam Cerquera (9 tackles, two TDs total) ended any possible comeback from the Warriors (0-2) with a 63-yard fumble recovery for a touchdown in the fourth quarter., "“Watching [Braeden] last year, I was thinking I’d never be able to do that,” said Riley O’Connell. “To come out and do that . . . I didn’t have as nice of a throw, but it was a great catch by Taimir and a great catch by Griffin Brown (2 TDs in the first half). I wanted to get the win.”," 14 Sep. 2019 The track saw 30 equine deaths total during the meet, with no trainer hit worse than Hollendorfer. Los Angeles Times, "Jerry Hollendorfer goes on the offensive in battle to allow his horses at Golden Gate," 29 Aug. 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

11 Nov 2019

Cite this Entry

“Total.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 21 November 2019.

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More Definitions for total


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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More from Merriam-Webster on total

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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