noun, often attributive
\ ˈtīp How to pronounce type (audio) \

Definition of type

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a particular kind, class, or group oranges of the seedless type leaders of the new type … did England yeoman's service— G. M. Trevelyan
b : something distinguishable as a variety : sort what type of food do you like?
c : a member of an indicated class or variety of people the guests were mostly urban types— Lucy Cook
d : a typical and often superior specimen
e : qualities common to a number of individuals that distinguish them as an identifiable class: such as
(1) : the morphological, physiological, or ecological characters by which relationship between organisms may be recognized
(2) : the form common to all instances of a linguistic element
2a : printed letters
b(1) : a rectangular block usually of metal bearing a relief character from which an inked print can be made
(2) : a collection of such blocks a font of type
(3) : alphanumeric characters for printing the type for this book has been photoset
c : typeface italic type
d : matter set in type
3 : a distinctive mark or sign
4a : a person or thing (as in the Old Testament) believed to foreshadow another (as in the New Testament)
b : one having qualities of a higher category : model
c : a lower taxonomic category selected as a standard of reference for a higher category also : a specimen or series of specimens on which a taxonomic species or subspecies is actually based


typed; typing

Definition of type (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to write something on a typewriter or enter data into a computer by way of a keyboard

transitive verb

1 : to produce (a character, a document, etc.) using a keyboard (as on a typewriter or computer) also : keyboard
2 : to identify as belonging to a type: such as
a : to determine the natural type of (as a blood sample)
b : typecast
3a : to produce a copy of
b : to represent in terms of typical characteristics : typify
4 : to represent beforehand as a type : prefigure

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from type


typeable \ ˈtī-​pə-​bəl How to pronounce typeable (audio) \ adjective

Choose the Right Synonym for type


type, kind, sort, nature, description, character mean a number of individuals thought of as a group because of a common quality or qualities. type may suggest strong and clearly marked similarity throughout the items included so that each is typical of the group. one of three basic body types kind may suggest natural grouping. a zoo seemingly having animals of every kind sort often suggests some disparagement. the sort of newspaper dealing in sensational stories nature may imply inherent, essential resemblance rather than obvious or superficial likenesses. two problems of a similar nature description implies a group marked by agreement in all details belonging to a type as described or defined. not all acts of that description are actually illegal character implies a group marked by distinctive likenesses peculiar to the type. research on the subject so far has been of an elementary character

Examples of type in a Sentence


We were not prepared to face this type of crisis. We studied various types of trees. a seedless type of orange He only likes two types of music. She likes all types of books.


How fast can you type? I never learned how to type. She asked her secretary to type a memo.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

These same types of roots allowed trees in the swampy Carboniferous period that followed to grow much taller. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, "Fossil Trees Reveal the Oldest Known Forest in Asia," 9 Aug. 2019 Additionally, because of overpopulation, alewives, a type of prey fish, were washing up dead on Great Lakes shorelines by the ton, making Michigan beaches places to be avoided at all costs. Michigan Wildlife Council, Detroit Free Press, "The story of Michigan salmon: Restoring balance to the Great Lakes," 9 Aug. 2019 The final price tag includes two types of costs, according to Stephen Dickinson, the district’s chief business and financial officer. Andrew J. Campa, Glendale News-Press, "Costly Glendale High School pool appears headed toward reality," 9 Aug. 2019 The price rises along with the plastic’s quality and type, high-density items being among the most valuable. Heidi Levine, National Geographic, "Plastics in the Gaza Strip are both a curse and a blessing," 7 Aug. 2019 The event is open to anyone interested in learning about the modern haiku, senryu and haibun types of poetry, focusing on contemporary free verse forms, not the familiar five-seven-five-syllable structure. Carole Goldberg, courant.com, "Write Stuff: ‘Sex and the City’ author takes on life over 50," 7 Aug. 2019 Our tax credit program 2.0 extended eligibility to include a range of project types, including big-budget feature films. Bryn Elise Sandberg, The Hollywood Reporter, "California's New Film Czar on Boosting Tax Incentives, Obamas' Netflix Plans," 7 Aug. 2019 But even if this app could work on people with all skin types, Adamson also pointed out that that doesn’t mean its benefits could reach everyone. Katherine Ellen Foley, Quartz, "Selfie-based blood pressure readings could help equalize health care—if they work on all skin types," 6 Aug. 2019 Three types of routines—strength, cardio, and supportive—are available almost every day and range from 10 minutes to 45 minutes long. Valentina Palladino, Ars Technica, "Polar Ignite review: Clever fitness perks marred by too many compromises," 3 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

This delay stems partly from the fact that the younger Salinger has yet to find reliable optical-recognition software and is instead undertaking the painstaking process of typing up his father’s handwritten words himself. Meilan Solly, Smithsonian, "J.D. Salinger’s Work Is Coming to E-Readers for the First Time," 12 Aug. 2019 Other valuable data take effort to use: a patient’s medical records, for example, often must be typed into a database by hand, a time-consuming chore. Jocelyn Kaiser, Science | AAAS, "Researchers weigh in on Trump’s $500 million plan to share childhood cancer data," 5 Aug. 2019 But words typed by sports writers or uttered by fans are different than a direct opinion expressed by the coach on the other side of the greatest rivalry in college football. Doug Lesmerises, cleveland.com, "Probing the unpredictable mind of Jim Harbaugh about his Urban Meyer comment: Doug Lesmerises," 19 July 2019 The idea is that the threads will read neuronal signals from a paralyzed patient’s brain and transmit that data to a machine — say, an iPhone — enabling the patient to control it without having to tap or type or swipe. Sigal Samuel, Vox, "Elon Musk reveals his plan to link your brain to your smartphone," 17 July 2019 McGregor compared the tool to predictive text, a technology that suggests words while typing on a phone. Makeda Easter, latimes.com, "Can artificial intelligence become a choreographer? Wayne McGregor brings AI to L.A.," 10 July 2019 In the paper era, doctors could jot down notes at their discretion or dictate notes that assistants would type. Sharona Hoffman, The Conversation, "Physician burnout: Why legal and regulatory systems may need to step in," 9 July 2019 Malicious actors can decode what a person is typing by using a spying app that can access the smartphone’s microphone, according to the study, which was first reported by The Wall Street Journal. Hamza Shaban, The Denver Post, "Hackers may glean your password by listening to how you type on your phone," 7 July 2019 Source: the company’s website Marketers can bid for ads on search-result pages based on phrases that users have typed into the Google search bar. Patience Haggin, WSJ, "Google’s Ad Dominance Explained in Three Charts," 17 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'type.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of type


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 4a


1596, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 4

History and Etymology for type


Middle English, from Late Latin typus, from Latin & Greek; Latin typus image, from Greek typos blow, impression, model, from typtein to strike, beat; akin to Sanskrit tupati he injures and probably to Latin stupēre to be benumbed

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about type

Statistics for type

Last Updated

14 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for type

The first known use of type was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for type



English Language Learners Definition of type

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a particular kind or group of things or people
: a particular kind of person
: printed letters



English Language Learners Definition of type (Entry 2 of 2)

: to write with a computer keyboard or typewriter
technical : to find out what group something is in


\ ˈtīp How to pronounce type (audio) \

Kids Definition of type

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a particular kind or group of things or people : variety a seedless type of orange He likes all types of books.
2 : a set of letters or figures that are used for printing or the letters or figures printed by them
3 : the special qualities or characteristics by which members of a group are set apart from other groups plants grouped by type


typed; typing

Kids Definition of type (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to write with a keyboard (as on computer or typewriter)
2 : to identify as belonging to a certain group


\ ˈtīp How to pronounce type (audio) \

Medical Definition of type

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a lower taxonomic category selected as a standard of reference for a higher category also : a specimen or series of specimens on which a taxonomic species or subspecies is actually based
2 : the morphological, physiological, or ecological characters by which relationship between organisms may be recognized
3 : a particular kind, class, or group cell types specifically : a group distinguishable on physiological or serological bases salmonella types
typed; typing

Medical Definition of type (Entry 2 of 2)

: to determine the type of (as a sample of blood or a culture of bacteria)

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on type

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with type

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for type

Spanish Central: Translation of type

Nglish: Translation of type for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of type for Arabic Speakers

Comments on type

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


a period when something is suspended

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Summer 2019 Words of the Day Quiz

  • a-bowl-of-peach-sorbet-with-cut-peaches-next-to-it
  • Which is a synonym of desideratum?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!