text

1 of 2

noun

1
a(1)
: the original words and form of a written or printed work
(2)
: an edited or emended copy of an original work
b
: a work containing such text
2
a
: the main body of printed or written matter on a page
b
: the principal part of a book exclusive of front and back matter
c
: the printed score of a musical composition
3
a(1)
: a verse or passage of Scripture chosen especially for the subject of a sermon or for authoritative support (as for a doctrine)
(2)
: a passage from an authoritative source providing an introduction or basis (as for a speech)
b
: a source of information or authority
4
5
a
: the words of something (such as a poem) set to music
b
: matter chiefly in the form of words or symbols that is treated as data for processing by computerized equipment
text-editing software
6
: a type suitable for printing running text
7
8
a
: something (such as a story or movie) considered as an object to be examined, explicated, or deconstructed
b
: something likened to a text
the surfaces of daily life are texts to be explicatedMichiko Kakutani
9
: frame of reference sense 2
updated to fit the women's lib text for consciousness raisingJudith Crist
10
: text message
sent a text with the details

text

2 of 2

verb

texted ˈtek-stəd How to pronounce text (audio)
 nonstandard  ˈtekst
; texting

transitive verb

: to send a text message from one cell phone to another

intransitive verb

: to communicate by text messaging
texter noun

Example Sentences

Noun A good critic will refer back to the text often. You can find the full text of his speech on his website. the text of the Constitution The book is mostly photographs—it has very little text. At this point the website is only text. Graphics will be added later. Students will read and discuss various literary texts. Verb I texted her a little while ago. I texted a message to her. She just texted me back. See More
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
In private phone calls, text messages, Zoom chats and in-person meetings, lawmakers tried to sway one another to dozens of prospective and competing House majorities. James Brooks, Anchorage Daily News, 25 Jan. 2023 United Furniture Industries, a furniture store in Mississippi, laid off 2,700 workers last year via text messages days before Thanksgiving. Khristopher J. Brooks, CBS News, 24 Jan. 2023 The babysitter seemed slightly weirded out by my heartfelt text messages. Rachel Feintzeig, WSJ, 23 Jan. 2023 In text messages, some Asian American elders refused to speculate on the motivation of the shooter, asking for prayers at temple altars instead. Los Angeles Times, 22 Jan. 2023 Phishing attempts, such as text messages or emails appear to be from Cash App, yet containing links to fake websites. Kurt Knutsson, Fox News, 21 Jan. 2023 As the plane strugged to stay in the air, Chafetz sent text messages to family, expressing love and asking for their prayers, according to CNN affiliate WEWS in Ohio. Kristina Sgueglia, CNN, 21 Jan. 2023 Margot initiates the flirtation at the concession stand, semi-stalks him from the back of the theater and skips past the games of hard to get, trading hundreds of text messages, which multiply across the screen like bacteria in a petri dish. Peter Debruge, Variety, 21 Jan. 2023 From 2019 to most of 2022, attackers lured targets to malicious sites that were sent through text messages, a technique known as smishing. Dan Goodin, Ars Technica, 20 Jan. 2023
Verb
Anyone with information about Kelley’s disappearance is asked to call the Collin County Sheriff’s Office at 972-547-5100, or to text information to 847411. Dallas News, 15 Jan. 2023 Later in the interview, Cameron addressed moviegoers who text during films at the theater. Zack Sharf, Variety, 10 Jan. 2023 Anyone struggling with suicidal thoughts can call or text the U.S. National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 988, or 800-273-8255 any time day or night, or chat online at https://988lifeline.org/chat/. Jeanne Houck, The Enquirer, 5 Jan. 2023 On your next date, don’t speak, just text each other across the dinner table. Meredith Goldstein, BostonGlobe.com, 1 Jan. 2023 When she was first detained, Griner could text using WhatsApp but not talk on the phone. Bill Oram, oregonlive, 24 Dec. 2022 Call or text the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline at 988 or use the online Lifeline Chat. William R. Hoffman, Scientific American, 22 Nov. 2022 People can also anonymously text a tip by visiting the MCS of Maryland website. Lilly Price, Baltimore Sun, 25 Dec. 2022 Put your best convo-starters to work and text your crush about their weekend plans. Carolyn Twersky, Seventeen, 12 Dec. 2022 See More

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

Word History

Etymology

Noun

Middle English, from Anglo-French tiste, texte, from Medieval Latin textus, from Latin, texture, context, from texere to weave — more at technical

First Known Use

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a(1)

Verb

1998, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

Time Traveler
The first known use of text was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near text

Cite this Entry

“Text.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/text. Accessed 30 Jan. 2023.

Kids Definition

text

1 of 2 noun
ˈtekst
1
: the original words of a work of literature
2
a
: the main body of printed or written matter on a page
b
: the main part of a book
3
a
: a passage from the Bible chosen for the subject of a sermon
b
: a subject on which one writes or speaks
4
: matter handled with a computer that is chiefly in the form of words
5
6

text

2 of 2 verb
1
: to send a text message from one cell phone to another
2
: to communicate by text messaging

More from Merriam-Webster on text

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