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[bloo-pen-suh l] /ˈbluˈpɛn səl/
verb (used with object), blue-penciled, blue-penciling or (especially British) blue-pencilled, blue-pencilling.
to alter, abridge, or cancel with or as with a pencil that has blue lead, as in editing a manuscript.
Origin of blue-pencil
First recorded in 1885-90 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for blue pencil
Historical Examples
  • These letters or numbers are best inserted with soft red or blue pencil.

    Essentials in Conducting Karl Wilson Gehrkens
  • The cashier was confident that his initials in blue pencil on the counterfoil were genuine.

    The Grell Mystery Frank Froest
  • So he took the blue pencil and scribbled that sentence on the back of it.

    Grace Harlowe's Golden Summer Jessie Graham Flower
  • The stub of his blue pencil had not figured out a contingency like this.

  • Owing to the loss of my blue pencil, our flag has had to adopt the Italian colors.

    Dear Enemy Jean Webster
  • Mark that with the blue pencil, Rob; I'll say that more briefly.

    The Little Grey House

    Marion Ames Taggart
  • The Editor had sat down again, and he was fiddling with a blue pencil.

  • "Yes," said Ricker, and he began to read it anew, with his blue pencil in his hand.

    The Quality of Mercy W. D. Howells
  • And, taking them, he wrote upon the back of each in blue pencil.

    Fighting in Cuban Waters Edward Stratemeyer
  • His blue pencil scratched out a sentence from one of her stories.

    Comrade Yetta Albert Edwards
British Dictionary definitions for blue pencil

blue pencil

deletion, alteration, or censorship of the contents of a book or other work
verb -cils, -cilling, -cilled (US) -cils, -ciling, -ciled
(transitive) to alter or delete parts of (a book, film, etc), esp to censor
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
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