The author looked at the computer screen in horror. With one keystroke she had deleted her entire manuscript. Delete means to erase.

Delete has its roots in Latin and was first used to mean destroy. In modern usage, delete means to remove completely. Delete used in writing means to edit by removing, often done by drawing a line through the text to be deleted . This process is also called “blue-penciling,” due to the use of the blue colored pencil that some editors use.

Definitions of delete
  1. verb
    cut or eliminate
    synonyms: blue-pencil, edit
    see moresee less
    type of:
    subject to political, religious, or moral censorship
  2. verb
    remove or make invisible
    “Please delete my name from your list”
    synonyms: cancel
    see moresee less
    show 4 types...
    hide 4 types...
    efface, erase, rub out, score out, wipe off
    remove by or as if by rubbing or erasing
    excise, expunge, scratch, strike
    remove by erasing or crossing out or as if by drawing a line
    erase with a sponge; as of words on a blackboard
    cut out, scratch out
    strike or cancel by or as if by rubbing or crossing out
    type of:
    remove, take, take away, withdraw
    remove something concrete, as by lifting, pushing, or taking off, or remove something abstract
  3. verb
    wipe out digitally or magnetically recorded information
    synonyms: erase
    see moresee less
    record, tape
    register electronically
    demagnetise, demagnetize
    erase (a magnetic storage device)
    type of:
    take away, take out
    take out or remove
Word Family

Test prep from the experts

Boost your test score with programs developed by’s experts.

  • Proven methods: Learn faster, remember longer with our scientific approach.
  • Personalized plan: We customize your experience to maximize your learning.
  • Strategic studying: Focus on the words that are most crucial for success.


  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 8 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week


  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 10 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week


  • Number of words: 700+
  • Duration: 10 weeks
  • Time: 1 hour / week