[prin-ter] /ˈprɪn tər/
a person or thing that prints, especially a person whose occupation is printing.
Computers. an output device that produces a paper copy of alphanumeric or graphic data.
an instrument that automatically records telegraphic messages by means of a printing mechanism activated by incoming signals.
Movies. a photographic machine through which either the negative or positive of a master print can be run, together with unexposed film, to make a duplicate.
1495–1505; print + -er1
Related forms
printerlike, adjective


[print] /prɪnt/
verb (used with object)
to produce (a text, picture, etc.) by applying inked types, plates, blocks, or the like, to paper or other material either by direct pressure or indirectly by offsetting an image onto an intermediate roller.
to reproduce (a design or pattern) by engraving on a plate or block.
to form a design or pattern upon, as by stamping with an engraved plate or block:
"to print calico."
to cause (a manuscript, text, etc.) to be published in print.
to write in letters like those commonly used in print:
"Print your name on these forms."
Computers. to produce (data) in legible alphanumeric or graphic form.
to indent or mark by pressing something into or upon (something).
to produce or fix (an indentation, mark, etc.), as by pressure.
to impress on the mind, memory, etc.
to apply (a thing) with pressure so as to leave an indentation, mark, etc.:
"The horses printed their hoofs on the wet grass."
Photography. to produce a positive picture from (a negative) by the transmission of light.
verb (used without object)
to take impressions from type, an engraved plate, etc., as in a press.
to produce by means of a reproduction process:
"to print in color; to print unevenly."
to make an image by means of ink, chemical action, etc., as type, engraved plates, etc.:
"This type is too worn to print cleanly."
to write in characters such as are used in print:
"He'd rather print than use longhand."
to follow the vocation of a printer.
the state of being printed.
printed lettering, especially with reference to character, style, or size:
"This print is too large for footnotes."
printed material.
a printed publication, as a newspaper or magazine.
a picture, design, or the like, printed from an engraved or otherwise prepared block, plate, etc.
an indentation, mark, etc., made by the pressure of one body or thing on another.
something with which an impression is made; a stamp or die.
a fingerprint.
  1. a design or pattern on cloth made by dyeing, weaving, or printing with engraved rollers, blocks of wood, stencils, etc.
  2. a cloth so treated.
  3. an article of apparel made of this cloth.
something that has been subjected to impression, as a pat of butter.
Photography. a picture, especially a positive made from a negative.
any reproduced image, as a blueprint.
Movies, Television. a positive copy of a completed film or filmed program ready for showing; release print.
of, for, or comprising newspapers and magazines:
"print media."
Verb phrases
print in, Photography, burn1 (def 45).
Also, burn in.
print out, Computers. to make a printout of.
in print,
  1. in printed form; published.
  2. (of a book or the like) still available for purchase from the publisher.
out of print, (of a book or the like) no longer available for purchase from the publisher.
1250–1300; (noun) Middle English prent(e), print(e), prient(e) < Old French priente impression, print, noun use of feminine past participle of preindre to press1 < Latin premere; (v.) Middle English prenten, derivative of the noun
Related forms
unprinted, adjective
well-printed, adjective
Can be confused
prince, prints.
Example Sentences for printer
Use your computer printer to print out these instructions and diagrams on copy paper.
Your camera, computer and printer all use color, but they may not all display it in the same way.
Printer manufacturers usually specify the printer resolution in dpi, or dots per inch.
Let's say you want to wirelessly print a picture from your mobile phone to a nearby printer.
Wirelessly sharing a printer on a home network is supposed to be easy.
Our whole department shared a printer in the main office.
The actual lifetime of any given print depends on the printer and ink used and the viewing conditions the print experiences.
Sure, you knew printer makers were playing you for a fool with overpriced ink cartridges.
It then expects the printer to print every character that way until it tells the printer to do something else.
But you can set up your printer to do a dozen to each school at one time.
British Dictionary definitions for printer
print (prɪnt)
1.  to reproduce (text, pictures, etc), esp in large numbers, by applying ink to paper or other material by one of various processes
2.  to produce or reproduce (a manuscript, a book, data, etc) in print, as for publication
3.  to write (letters, etc) in the style of printed matter
4.  to mark or indent (a surface) by pressing (something) onto it
5.  to produce a photographic print from (a negative)
6.  (tr) to implant or fix in the mind or memory
7.  (tr) to make (a mark or indentation) by applying pressure
8.  printed matter such as newsprint
9.  a printed publication such as a newspaper or book
10.  in print
 a.  in printed or published form
 b.  (of a book, etc) offered for sale by the publisher
11.  out of print no longer available from a publisher
12.  a design or picture printed from an engraved plate, wood block, or other medium
13.  printed text, esp with regard to the typeface used: small print
14.  Compare slide a positive photographic image in colour or black and white produced, usually on paper, from a negative image on film
15.  a.  a fabric with a printed design
 b.  (as modifier): a print dress
16.  a.  a mark or indentation made by pressing something onto a surface
 b.  a stamp, die, etc, that makes such an impression
 c.  the surface subjected to such an impression
17.  See fingerprint
[C13 priente, from Old French: something printed, from preindre to make an impression, from Latin premere to press]

printer (ˈprɪntə)
1.  a person or business engaged in printing
2.  a machine or device that prints
3.  computing an output device for printing results on paper

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin and History for printer
c.1300, "impression, mark," from O.Fr. preinte "impression," prop. fem. pp. of preindre "to press," from L. premere (see press (v.1)). Sense of "picture or design from a block or plate" is first attested 1662. Meaning "piece of printed cloth" is from 1756. Out of print "no longer to be had from the publisher" is from 1674. The verb is attested from c.1340, "to impress with a seal, stamp, or die;" Meaning "to set a mark on any surface (including by writing)" is attested from c.1400. Meaning "to run off on a press" is recorded from 1511 (Caxton, 1474, used enprynte in this sense). In reference to textiles, 1588. The verb in the photography sense is recorded from 1851 (the noun from 1853). Meaning "to write in imitation of typography" is first attested 1837 in "Pickwick Papers":
"He always prints, I know, 'cos he learnt writin' from the large bills in the bookin' offices."
The meaning "to record (someone's) fingerprints" is from 1952. Printer is recorded from 1504; in the computer sense, from 1946. Printer's bible so called from mistaken substitution of printers for princes in Psalm cxix.161, which led to the misreading:
"Printers have persecuted me without a cause."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang related to printer



A fingerprint : My prints ain't on that gun (1924+)


: They printed me (1938+)


the small print

Dictionary of American Slang
Copyright © 1986 by HarperCollins Publishers
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printer in Technology
A peripheral device for producing text and images on paper. There are many different types, broadly grouped into "impact printers" and "non-impact printers".
Compare plotter. See also Braille printer, tree-killer.
The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010
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Difficulty index for printer

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Tile value for printer

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