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[verb oh-ver-set; noun oh-ver-set] /verb ˌoʊ vərˈsɛt; noun ˈoʊ vərˌsɛt/
verb (used with object), overset, oversetting.
to upset or overturn; overthrow.
to throw into confusion; disorder physically or mentally.
verb (used without object), overset, oversetting.
to become upset, overturned, or overthrown.
  1. (of type or copy) to set in or to excess.
  2. (of space) to set too much type for.
the act or fact of oversetting; upset; overturn.
Also called overmatter. Printing. matter set up in excess of space.
Origin of overset
1150-1200; Middle English oversetten; see over-, set
Related forms
oversetter, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for overset
Historical Examples
  • Character is centrality, the impossibility of being displaced or overset.

    Essays, Second Series Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • "I have said already that we'll overset it with our hands," Grey answered.

    Mistress Wilding Rafael Sabatini
  • Manuel, with great suavity, had overset the former and defied the latter.

    Plotting in Pirate Seas Francis Rolt-Wheeler
  • He rushed into the centre of it, and overset the bride in her gilded wagon.

    Alroy Benjamin Disraeli
  • The rockers must be pointed and have plenty of circle so it would not overset easily.

    Watch Yourself Go By Al. G. Field
  • Papa would not overset the overseer's decision about the prayer-meetings.

    Daisy Elizabeth Wetherell
  • She was not in the least afraid of a break down or an overset.

    The Ghost Girl H. De Vere Stacpoole
  • It so happened that my cane, in springing, overset the pitcher, but did not break it.

  • The ship had overset in one of the sudden squalls to which these seas are liable.

    Hurricane Hurry W.H.G. Kingston
  • But it is too much to overset a narrative and call it a historical play.'

British Dictionary definitions for overset


verb (transitive) (ˌəʊvəˈsɛt) -sets, -setting, -set
to disturb or upset
(printing) to set (type or copy) in excess of the space available
noun (ˈəʊvəˌsɛt)
another name for overmatter
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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