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bleep

[bleep]
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noun
  1. a brief, constant beeping sound, usually of a high pitch and generated by an electronic device.
  2. such an electronic sound used to replace a censored word or phrase, as on a television broadcast.
  3. Also blip. (used as a euphemism to indicate the omission or deletion of an obscenity or other objectionable word).
verb (used without object)
  1. (of an electronic device) to emit a series of bleeps as an audible signal, summons, or warning.
verb (used with object)
  1. Also blip. to censor (an obscene, vulgar, or other objectionable word or phrase) from a radio or television broadcast by deleting from the audio signal, leaving a gap or an electronic tone: The word was bleeped out of the comedian's routine.

Origin of bleep

First recorded in 1950–55; perhaps imitative
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for bleep

bleep

noun
  1. a short high-pitched signal made by an electronic apparatus; beep
  2. another word for bleeper
verb
  1. (intr) to make such a noise
  2. (tr) to call (someone) by triggering the bleeper he or she is wearing

Word Origin

C20: of imitative origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for bleep

n.

"electronic noise," 1953, imitative.

v.

1957, from bleep (n.); specific sense of "edit a sound over a word deemed unfit for broadcast" is from 1968 (earliest reference seems to be to the "Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour" on U.S. television). Related: Bleeped; bleeping.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

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