write

verb

wrote ˈrōt How to pronounce write (audio) ; written ˈri-tᵊn How to pronounce write (audio) also writ ˈrit How to pronounce write (audio) or dialectal wrote; writing ˈrī-tiŋ How to pronounce write (audio)

transitive verb

1
a
: to form (characters, symbols, etc.) on a surface with an instrument (such as a pen)
b
: to form (words) by inscribing characters or symbols on a surface
write one's name
c
: to spell in writing
words written alike but pronounced differently
d
: to cover, fill, or fill in by writing
wrote ten pages
write a check
2
: to set down in writing: such as
a
: draw up, draft
write a will
b(1)
: to be the author of : compose
writes poems and essays
(2)
: to compose in musical form
write a string quartet
c
: to express in literary form
if I could write the beauty of your eyesWilliam Shakespeare
d
: to communicate by letter
writes that they are coming
e
: to use or exhibit (a specific script, language, or literary form or style) in writing
write braille
writes French with ease
f
: to write contracts or orders for
especially : underwrite
write life insurance
3
: to make a permanent impression of
4
: to communicate with in writing
we'll write you when we get there
5
: ordain, fate
so be it, it is writtenD. C. Peattie
6
: to make evident or obvious
guilt written on his face
7
: to force, effect, introduce, or remove by writing
write oneself into fame and fortuneCharles Lee
8
: to take part in or bring about (something worth recording)
9
a
: to introduce (information) into the storage device or medium of a computer
b
: to transfer (information) from the main memory of a computer to a storage or output device
10
: sell
write a stock option

intransitive verb

1
a
: to make significant characters or inscriptions
also : to permit or be adapted to writing
b
: to form or produce written letters, words, or sentences
2
: to compose, communicate by, or send a letter
3
a
: to produce a written work
b
: to compose music
Phrases
write one's own ticket
: to select a course of action or position entirely according to one's wishes
writ large
: on a larger scale or in a more prominent manner
the problems of modern totalitarianism are only our own problems writ largeThe Times Literary Supplement (London)
writ small
: on a smaller scale

Examples of write in a Sentence

children learning to read and write I don't have anything to write with. Could I borrow a pen? Please write your name at the top of each sheet. Write the number as a decimal instead of as a fraction. She wrote “tag sale” on the sign in big letters. The note was written in blue ink. I mistakenly wrote her name as “Gene” instead of “Jean.” She wrote hundreds of poems during her lifetime. She wrote an essay comparing two poems. I'm writing an article for the school newspaper.
Recent Examples on the Web Often, your excellent questions inspire us to write full-length articles. Becky Krystal, Washington Post, 3 Apr. 2024 Tony Sachs has been writing about rum and other spirits since 2007, visiting distilleries and meeting the people who distill and blend rum to learn the techniques and the stories behind each one. Tony Sachs, Robb Report, 29 Mar. 2024 Leap seconds can disrupt satellite, financial and energy transmission systems that depend on precise clocks, writes NBC News. Will Sullivan, Smithsonian Magazine, 29 Mar. 2024 Istvan once wrote an article claiming that AI Day will replace Christmas as the most important holiday in less than 25 Years. Tracey Follows, Forbes, 29 Mar. 2024 Sources tell Variety that Levinson, who exerts full creative control over the show, writing and directing every episode, proposed his vision for the season in winter 2023, featuring a time jump five years into the future for the former students of East Highland High School. Tatiana Siegel, Variety, 29 Mar. 2024 As Dylan Sloan writes, the CEO of the $10 trillion asset manager blames boomers for avoiding tough decisions about retirement reform. Nick Rockel, Fortune, 29 Mar. 2024 Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com. Alan Taylor, The Atlantic, 29 Mar. 2024 But Suno’s founders claim there’s little to fear, using the metaphor that people still read despite having the ability to write. Brian Hiatt, Rolling Stone, 17 Mar. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'write.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Middle English, from Old English wrītan to scratch, draw, inscribe; akin to Old High German rīzan to tear and perhaps to Greek rhinē file, rasp

First Known Use

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of write was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near write

Cite this Entry

“Write.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/write. Accessed 12 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition

write

verb
wrote ˈrōt How to pronounce write (audio) ; written ˈrit-ᵊn How to pronounce write (audio) also writ ˈrit How to pronounce write (audio) ; writing ˈrīt-iŋ How to pronounce write (audio)
1
: to form letters or words on a surface with an instrument (as a pen or pencil)
learn to read and write
2
: to form the letters or the words of (as on paper)
write your name
write a check
3
: to spell in writing
words written alike but pronounced differently
4
: to express in writing
write what you felt about the experience
5
a
: to make up and set down for others to read
write a book
b
: to compose music
6
: to write a letter to
write your senator
7
: to communicate by letter
writes that they are coming
8
: to transfer information in a computer to a storage area or output device

More from Merriam-Webster on write

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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