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[ded-lahyn] /ˈdɛdˌlaɪn/
the time by which something must be finished or submitted; the latest time for finishing something:
a five o'clock deadline.
a line or limit that must not be passed.
(formerly) a boundary around a military prison beyond which a prisoner could not venture without risk of being shot by the guards.
1855-60; dead + line1
Related forms
postdeadline, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples for deadline
  • However, the government has reportedly reneged on this mandate, and has postponed that deadline indefinitely.
  • There is never an acceptable excuse for missing deadline.
  • Today is the deadline for nations to submit their proposals.
  • The family had not issued a statement at deadline and no reports on her condition had been confirmed.
  • And yet, it still will not be closed even close to the deadline if ever.
  • He selects the figure order that best compliments his paper and a deadline is communicated.
  • It's interesting that the debt-crisis talks are happening concurrently with baseball's trading deadline.
  • Otherwise, it is simply a later deadline, to be blown and then renegotiated.
  • Some terrific candidates were excluded solely because they didn't have a new piece of fiction available by our deadline.
  • Projects that must be rushed to completion to meet an urgent deadline can incur punishing overtime charges.
British Dictionary definitions for deadline


a time limit for any activity
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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Word Origin and History for deadline
"time limit," 1920, Amer.Eng. newspaper jargon. Perhaps influenced by earlier use (1864) to mean the "do-not-cross" line in Civil War prisons:
"Seventeen feet from the inner stockade was the 'dead-line,' over which no man could pass and live." [Lossing, 1868]
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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