[ verb oh-ver-lohd; noun oh-ver-lohd ]
/ verb ˌoʊ vərˈloʊd; noun ˈoʊ vərˌloʊd /

verb (used with object)

to load to excess; overburden: Don't overload the raft or it will sink.


an excessive load.

Origin of overload

First recorded in 1545–55; over- + load
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for overload

British Dictionary definitions for overload


verb (ˌəʊvəˈləʊd)

(tr) to put too large a load on or in

noun (ˈəʊvəˌləʊd)

an excessive load
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 overload



1550s, "to place too great a burden on," from over- + load (v.). Intransitive sense from 1961. Related: Overloaded; overloading. The noun is attested from 1640s; of electrical current, from 1904. Middle English had overlade (v.) in this sense.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper