Definition of delete in English:

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Pronunciation: /dɪˈliːt/


[with object]
1Remove or obliterate (written or printed matter), especially by drawing a line through it: the passage was deleted
More example sentences
  • But once the dogs of war started howling he deleted the fine print.
  • The pharmacy deleted an important ingredient in your blood pressure management when it made this switch.
  • I vote that the second half of the film be deleted, re-written, and re-filmed to completely focus on the time spent on The Farm.
cross out, strike out, put a line through, blue-pencil, ink out, score out, scratch out, obliterate, white out;
Computing , informal kill
Printing  dele
British trademark Tippex out
1.1Remove (data) from a computer’s memory: any program in memory will be deleted before the new one is loaded
More example sentences
  • Users are advised to update their antivirus software and delete any suspicious emails without opening them.
  • In many cases, criminals think that they can permanently delete information from their computers by hitting Delete on the keyboard.
  • Remove software by deleting them from the Program Files folder.
1.2Remove (a product, especially a recording) from the catalogue of those available for purchase: their EMI release has already been deleted
More example sentences
  • If none of these options is considered feasible, the company must decide how best to delete the product.
  • Serious about their decision to leave the music business, the band deleted their back catalogue, which meant that after the existing records were sold no more would be pressed.
  • Then they deleted their entire back catalogue.
1.3 (be deleted) Genetics (Of a section of genetic code, or its product) be lost or excised from a nucleic acid or protein sequence: if one important gene is deleted from an animal’s DNA, other genes can stand in
More example sentences
  • In this process new genes are created by repeated gene duplications, and some genes may later become pseudogenes or even be deleted from the genome.
  • This may be related to the large size of the chromosomal DNA to be deleted, to polymorphism at this locus, or to specific effects of the donor DNA.
  • As reported previously, at each insertion site some chromosomal DNA was deleted, most likely in conjunction with the integration event.


A command or key on a computer which erases text: you can use delete to remove a number of lines from your program
More example sentences
  • I accidentally hit the tiny delete key instead of backspace.
  • Because a CD-ROM is static, there will never be a delete or update.
  • Great, but won't people have to have phones which can accept delete commands?





Late Middle English (in the sense 'destroy'): from Latin delet- 'blotted out, effaced', from the verb delere.

  • ‘Destroy’ was the early recorded sense of delete, from Latin delere ‘blot out, efface’.

Words that rhyme with delete

accrete, autocomplete, beet, bittersweet, bleat, cheat, cleat, clubfeet, compete, compleat, complete, conceit, Crete, deceit, deplete, discreet, discrete, eat, effete, élite, entreat, escheat, estreat, excrete, feat, feet, fleet, gîte, greet, heat, leat, leet, Magritte, maltreat, marguerite, meat, meet, meet-and-greet, mesquite, mete, mistreat, neat, outcompete, peat, Pete, petite, pleat, receipt, replete, sangeet, seat, secrete, sheet, skeet, sleet, splay-feet, street, suite, sweet, teat, treat, tweet, wheat

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: de¦lete

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