noun, often attributive
car·​toon | \ kär-ˈtün How to pronounce cartoon (audio) \

Definition of cartoon

1 : a preparatory design, drawing, or painting (as for a fresco)
2a : a drawing intended as satire, caricature, or humor a political cartoon
4 : a ludicrously simplistic, unrealistic, or one-dimensional portrayal or version the film's villain is an entertaining cartoon

Other Words from cartoon

cartoon verb
cartooning \ kär-​ˈtü-​niŋ How to pronounce cartoon (audio) \ noun
cartoonish \ kär-​ˈtü-​nish How to pronounce cartoon (audio) \ adjective
cartoonishly adverb
cartoonist \ kär-​ˈtü-​nist How to pronounce cartoon (audio) \ noun
cartoonlike \ kär-​ˈtün-​ˌlīk How to pronounce cartoon (audio) \ adjective
cartoony \ kär-​ˈtü-​nē How to pronounce cartoon (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for cartoon


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Examples of cartoon in a Sentence

She enjoys reading the cartoons in the Sunday paper. The kids are watching cartoons.
Recent Examples on the Web Kunis had recently launched a cartoon series with her husband, Ashton Kutcher, that uses NFTs, a digital deed often used to sell digital art that exploded into a $25 billion market. Washington Post, 5 Mar. 2022 Did things like the Jackson 5 cartoon series and Motown acts being on television so often bring you more into that world? Jem Aswad, Variety, 11 Feb. 2022 The comic has proved popular over the years, especially with younger readers, and is now being adapted as a cartoon series by Disney Television Animation. Christian Holub,, 7 Feb. 2022 Archewell Productions, designed to produce programming, are also developing documentaries and a cartoon series in correspondence with another multimillion deal, this time with streaming giant Netflix. Josh Wilson, Forbes, 26 Jan. 2022 Some posted the video upside down, others embedded it in cartoon clips, and some circulated it through QR codes and cloud services. Nectar Gan, CNN, 25 Apr. 2022 The artwork by Michael Cavallaro on these pages is great, with mosquito larvae fleeing and the fish in hot pursuit, both displaying animated expressions on their cartoon faces. David James, Anchorage Daily News, 23 Apr. 2022 Pieces of her hair were styled into loops around her hairline that give her a major resemblance to the cartoon character. Gabi Thorne, Allure, 22 Apr. 2022 The multi-winning Oscar actor, who turned 85 on Friday, explained in a previous making-of featurette that the classic DC comic book villain could not be a bombastic cartoon incarnation. Ryan Parker, The Hollywood Reporter, 22 Apr. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of cartoon

1671, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for cartoon

Italian cartone pasteboard, cartoon, augmentative of carta leaf of paper — more at card entry 1

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Time Traveler for cartoon

Time Traveler

The first known use of cartoon was in 1671

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Dictionary Entries Near cartoon

carton pierre



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Statistics for cartoon

Last Updated

14 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Cartoon.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for cartoon


car·​toon | \ kär-ˈtün How to pronounce cartoon (audio) \

Kids Definition of cartoon

1 : a movie or television program made by photographing a series of drawings
2 : a drawing (as in a newspaper) making people or objects look funny or foolish

More from Merriam-Webster on cartoon

Nglish: Translation of cartoon for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of cartoon for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about cartoon


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