trac·​ing | \ˈtrā-siŋ \

Definition of tracing 

1 : something that is traced: such as

a : a copy made on a superimposed transparent sheet

b : a graphic record made by an instrument (such as a seismograph) that registers some movement

2 : the act of one that traces

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Examples of tracing in a Sentence

the tracing of this mountain lion is going to be difficult if the rain washes away all of the tracks

Recent Examples on the Web

But Nvidia gets off to a relatively good start by telling developers that RTX's boosts mostly supplement what developers are working on anyway: more efficient anti-aliasing, more efficient mesh generation, and a path to affordable ray tracing. Sam Machkovech, Ars Technica, "Nvidia RTX 2080 and 2080 Ti review: A tale of two very expensive graphics cards," 19 Sep. 2018 Ten years later and Claudia's work — which is hand-drawn on tracing paper out of her Brooklyn, New York, studio — can be found at Bloomingdales, West Elm, and, of course, Etsy. Danielle Tullo, House Beautiful, "This Is The Designer Behind Those Popular Hand-Illustrated Tea Towels," 23 Aug. 2018 Print hat template and trace onto felt; cut out tracing and assemble with hot glue. Woman's Day Staff, Woman's Day, "50+ Creative Pumpkin Carving Ideas for Halloween," 25 July 2018 In this case, those come in the form of proprietary standards for anti-aliasing, ray tracing, and rasterization. Sam Machkovech, Ars Technica, "Nvidia RTX 2080 and 2080 Ti review: A tale of two very expensive graphics cards," 19 Sep. 2018 Contact tracing is the process through which everyone who has interacted with someone suspected of having Ebola is identified and monitored. Max Bearak, Washington Post, "With Ebola at a “critical point” in Congo, aid groups scramble to limit the outbreak," 2 June 2018 That tracing also was used in a new way during this outbreak: to identify candidates for an experimental Ebola vaccine that had only been used once before, in the waning days of the West African epidemic. Max Bearak, Washington Post, "Remember that Ebola outbreak in Congo? Looks like they contained it.," 27 June 2018 Nvidia just announced real-time ray tracing, dubbing it Nvidia RTX, as a feature of its next generation of graphics cards, and Epic Games is among the first to offer support for the same. Vlad Savov, The Verge, "Epic Games showcases the Unreal future of graphics with real-time ray tracing in Star Wars," 22 Mar. 2018 Having a fast, non-invasive method such as heavy water tracing would be a great economic boon. Kevin Davenport, idahostatesman, "Yellowstone's magma chamber is more powerful than we knew. Here's why studying it matters.," 3 July 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for tracing

Last Updated

30 Nov 2018

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

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More Definitions for tracing



English Language Learners Definition of tracing

: a copy of a picture, map, etc., that is made by tracing the original


trac·​ing | \ˈtrā-siŋ\

Kids Definition of tracing

: a copy of something traced from an original


trac·​ing | \ˈtrā-siŋ \

Medical Definition of tracing 

: a graphic record made by an instrument (as an electrocardiograph) that registers some movement

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More from Merriam-Webster on tracing

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with tracing

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for tracing

Nglish: Translation of tracing for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of tracing for Arabic Speakers

Comments on tracing

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


the figure or shape of a crescent moon

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