[ 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.

Nearby words

  1. overlearn,
  2. overleverage,
  3. overlie,
  4. overline,
  5. overlive,
  6. overlong,
  7. overlook,
  8. overlooker,
  9. overlord,
  10. overly

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