underscore

verb
un·​der·​score | \ ˈən-dər-ˌskȯr How to pronounce underscore (audio) \
underscored; underscoring; underscores

Definition of underscore

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to draw a line under : underline
2 : to make evident : emphasize, stress arrived early to underscore the importance of the occasion
3 : to provide (action on film) with accompanying music

underscore

noun

Definition of underscore (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a line drawn under a word or line especially for emphasis or to indicate intent to italicize
2 : music accompanying the action and dialogue of a film

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Synonyms & Antonyms for underscore

Synonyms: Verb

accentuate, bring out, emphasize, italicize, stress, underline

Antonyms: Verb

de-emphasize

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Examples of underscore in a Sentence

Verb

These failures underscore the difficulty of what we're attempting to do. The President's visit underscores the administration's commitment to free trade. She underscored the most important points.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The move also underscores the limits on the reach of the International Criminal Court. Maggie Michael, The Seattle Times, "Sudan army removes leader, rejects al-Bashir extradition," 13 Apr. 2019 Like the rescue itself, the close medical attention from one of the government’s highest-ranking doctors underscores the unusual nature of the mission to save the youths and their coach. New York Times, "Freed From Thai Cave, Boys May Still Face Health Problems," 10 July 2018 But the deal underscores why such arrangements can be risky. ... Lauren Silva Laughlin, WSJ, "Chuck E. Cheese’s Deal May Have Short Shelf Life," 11 Apr. 2019 But events over the past year also underscore that this is a risky strategy. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "Donald Trump is actually a very unpopular president," 23 July 2018 But a story relayed by Canada’s CBC underscores the problems that exist on the northern border as well. Kevin Kelleher, Fortune, "U.S. Authorities Detained a Woman for 2 Weeks After She Accidentally Jogged Over the Border from Canada," 22 June 2018 But Cruz’s change of heart underscores the chorus of bipartisan politicians and civic and religious leaders across the country who’ve said such tactics are unacceptable — even as the Trump administration has vowed to stand by them. Will Weissert, BostonGlobe.com, "Ted Cruz’s flip-flop on family separation shows threat to GOP," 19 June 2018 To underscore that point, Republicans in the state Senate tried to sue Secretary of State [Matt] Dunlap to stop the process from going forward. Rachel Withers, Vox, "The somewhat absurd controversy over Maine’s ranked choice voting system, explained," 9 Dec. 2018 Six-foot-two, handsome, dominant in person, President Bush spoke with those big strong hands, making fists to underscore points. Chloe Foussianes, Town & Country, "Jon Meacham's Eulogy for George H.W. Bush: Read What the President's Biographer Had to Say," 5 Dec. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Last night's episode established violence as a running theme in the series, and tonight's underscores the lack of opportunity. Julie Kosin, Harper's BAZAAR, "In My Brilliant Friend, Education Offers a Dangerous Escape from Poverty," 20 Nov. 2018 Today’s Video Immigration Divide House Speaker Paul Ryan’s tussles with some Republican lawmakers on immigration underscore how the party has struggled to define its consensus position on the issue. Gerard Baker, WSJ, "The 10-Point.," 22 May 2018 The lack of color underscores how shocking these works once were. Roberta Smith, Martha Schwendener And Will Heinrich, New York Times, "What to See in New York Art Galleries This Week," 11 Apr. 2018 Various anonymous comments by Republican consultants, almost gleeful in tone, underscore that guess. Gerald F. Seib, WSJ, "Violence That Changes Everything—and Nothing," 29 Oct. 2018 And while the family certainly is special, as the movie underscores, the Incredibles don’t want to withdraw from the world. Brad Bird, New York Times, "Review: ‘Incredibles 2’ Is a Fast Blast (With Red Flags)," 13 June 2018 That blacks may do even better underscores the need to dig deeper to find out why, said Halabi. Washington Post, "Blacks fare surprisingly well in prostate cancer research," 1 June 2018 Its elimination places an ironic underscore on the region’s housing crisis: The bus drivers’ temporary bedsits may have to make way for permanent development. Wendy Lee, SFChronicle.com, "Silicon Valley bus drivers sleep in parking lots. They may have to make way for development," 25 June 2018 The new video service underscores Instagram’s efforts to fend off competition by rivals like YouTube and Snapchat that operate competing social media and video services favored by young adults and teenagers. Jonathan Vanian, Fortune, "Instagram Debuts YouTube Rival IGTV Video App for 'Creators'," 20 June 2018

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

Verb

1771, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1901, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for underscore

Last Updated

16 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for underscore

The first known use of underscore was in 1771

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More Definitions for underscore

underscore

verb

English Language Learners Definition of underscore

: to emphasize (something) or show the importance of (something)
: to draw a line under (something)

underscore

verb
un·​der·​score | \ ˈən-dər-ˌskȯr How to pronounce underscore (audio) \
underscored; underscoring

Kids Definition of underscore

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Comments on underscore

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one that collects or salvages junk

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