[ verb ri-kawrd; noun, adjective rek-erd ]
See synonyms for: recordrecordedrecordingrecords on

verb (used with object)
  1. to set down in writing or the like, as for the purpose of preserving evidence.

  2. to cause to be set down or registered: to record one's vote.

  1. to state or indicate: He recorded his protest, but it was disregarded.

  2. to serve to relate or to tell of: The document records that the battle took place six years earlier.

  3. to set down or register in some permanent form, as on a seismograph.

  4. to set down, register, or fix by characteristic marks, incisions, magnetism, etc., for the purpose of reproduction by a phonograph or magnetic reproducer.

  5. to make a recording of: The orchestra recorded the 6th Symphony.

verb (used without object)
  1. to record something; make a record.

nounrec·ord [rek-erd] /ˈrɛk ərd/
  1. an act of recording.

  2. the state of being recorded, as in writing.

  1. an account in writing or the like preserving the memory or knowledge of facts or events.

  2. information or knowledge preserved in writing or the like.

  3. a report, list, or aggregate of actions or achievements: He made a good record in college. The ship has a fine sailing record.

  4. a legally documented history of criminal activity: They discovered that the suspect had a record.

  5. something or someone serving as a remembrance; memorial: Keep this souvenir as a record of your visit.

  6. the tracing, marking, or the like, made by a recording instrument.

  7. something on which sound or images have been recorded for subsequent reproduction, as a grooved disk that is played on a phonograph or an optical disk for recording sound (audio disc ) or images (videodisc ).: Compare compact disk.

  8. the highest or best rate, amount, etc., ever attained, especially in sports: to hold the record for home runs; to break the record in the high jump.

  9. Sports. the standing of a team or individual with respect to contests won, lost, and tied.

  10. an official writing intended to be preserved.

  11. Computers. a group of related fields, or a single field, treated as a unit and comprising part of a file or data set, for purposes of input, processing, output, or storage by a computer.

  12. Law.

    • the commitment to writing, as authentic evidence, of something having legal importance, especially as evidence of the proceedings or verdict of a court.

    • evidence preserved in this manner.

    • an authentic or official written report of proceedings of a court of justice.

adjectiverec·ord [rek-erd] /ˈrɛk ərd/
  1. making or affording a record.

  2. surpassing or superior to all others: a record year for automobile sales.

Idioms about record

  1. go on record, to issue a public statement of one's opinion or stand: He went on record as advocating immediate integration.

  2. off the record,

    • not intended for publication; unofficial; confidential: The president's comment was strictly off the record.

    • not registered or reported as a business transaction; off the books.

  1. on record,

    • existing as a matter of public knowledge; known.

    • existing in a publication, document, file, etc.: There was no birth certificate on record.

Origin of record

First recorded in 1175–1225; 1875–80 for def. 17; 1855–60 for def. 18; (for the verb) Middle English recorden, from Old French recorder, from Latin recordārī “to remember, recollect,” from re- re- + cord- (stem of cors ) “heart” + -ārī, infinitive verb ending; (for the noun) Middle English record(e), from Old French, derivative of recorder; cf. cordial

Other words for record

Other words from record

  • re·cord·a·ble, adjective
  • rec·ord·less, adjective
  • un·re·cord·a·ble, adjective
  • well-re·cord·ed, adjective

Words Nearby record Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use record in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for record


  1. an account in permanent form, esp in writing, preserving knowledge or information about facts or events

  2. a written account of some transaction that serves as legal evidence of the transaction

  1. a written official report of the proceedings of a court of justice or legislative body, including the judgments given or enactments made

  2. anything serving as evidence or as a memorial: the First World War is a record of human folly

  3. (often plural) information or data on a specific subject collected methodically over a long period: weather records

    • the best or most outstanding amount, rate, height, etc, ever attained, as in some field of sport: an Olympic record; a world record; to break the record for the long jump

    • (as modifier): a record time

  4. the sum of one's recognized achievements, career, or performance: the officer has an excellent record

  5. a list of crimes of which an accused person has previously been convicted, which are known to the police but may only be disclosed to a court in certain circumstances

  6. have a record to be a known criminal; have a previous conviction or convictions

  7. Also called: gramophone record, disc a thin disc of a plastic material upon which sound has been recorded. Each side has a spiral groove, which undulates in accordance with the frequency and amplitude of the sound. Records were formerly made from a shellac-based compound but were later made from vinyl plastics

  8. the markings made by a recording instrument such as a seismograph

  9. computing a group of data or piece of information preserved as a unit in machine-readable form

  10. (in some computer languages) a data structure designed to allow the handling of groups of related pieces of information as though the group were a single entity

  11. for the record for the sake of a strict factual account

  12. go on record to state one's views publicly

  13. on record

    • stated in a public document

    • publicly known

  14. put the record straight or set the record straight to correct an error or misunderstanding

verb(rɪˈkɔːd) (mainly tr)
  1. to set down in some permanent form so as to preserve the true facts of: to record the minutes of a meeting

  2. to contain or serve to relate (facts, information, etc)

  1. to indicate, show, or register: his face recorded his disappointment

  2. to remain as or afford evidence of: these ruins record the life of the Romans in Britain

  3. (also intr) to make a recording of (music, speech, etc) for reproduction, or for later broadcasting

  4. (also intr) (of an instrument) to register or indicate (information) on a scale: the barometer recorded a low pressure

Origin of record

C13: from Old French recorder to call to mind, from Latin recordārī to remember, from re- + cor heart

Derived forms of record

  • recordable, adjective

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

Other Idioms and Phrases with record


see break the record; go on record; just for the record; off the record; set (the record) straight; track record.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.