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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
  • I never do, and Harmer has to blue-pencil my copy mercilessly.

  • When he begins to blue-pencil that pay-roll, some one is going to be hungry.

    The Modern Railroad Edward Hungerford
  • Good and true writing no magazine or newspaper editor will blue-pencil.

    The Last Harvest John Burroughs
  • He handed a map, with red-pencil and blue-pencil markings, along to von Schlichten.

    Uller Uprising Henry Beam Piper, John D. Clark and John F. Carr
  • He used the editorial "blue-pencil" for alteration and condensation with the hand of a master.

    The Great God Success John Graham (David Graham Phillips)
  • Meantime I'll take your advice about my speech, Mac, and blue-pencil the how-to-be-good stuff.

    The Clarion Samuel Hopkins Adams
  • You blue-pencil out of my poor paragraphs everything that's interesting.

    The Dop Doctor

    Clotilde Inez Mary Graves

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