understate

verb

un·​der·​state ˌən-dər-ˈstāt How to pronounce understate (audio)
understated; understating; understates

transitive verb

1
: to represent as less than is the case
understate taxable income
2
: to state or present with restraint especially for effect

Examples of understate in a Sentence

He understated his taxable income. She's trying to understate the issue.
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These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'understate.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1824, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of understate was in 1824

Dictionary Entries Near understate

Cite this Entry

“Understate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/understate. Accessed 15 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition

understate

verb
un·​der·​state ˌən-dər-ˈstāt How to pronounce understate (audio)
1
: to represent as less than is the case
understate taxable income
2
: to state mildly especially on purpose
understatement noun

More from Merriam-Webster on understate

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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