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[proof-reed] /ˈprufˌrid/
verb (used with object), proofread
[proof-red] /ˈprufˌrɛd/ (Show IPA),
proofreading [proof-ree-ding] /ˈprufˌri dɪŋ/ (Show IPA)
to read (printers' proofs, copy, etc.) in order to detect and mark errors to be corrected.
verb (used without object), proofread
[proof-red] /ˈprufˌrɛd/ (Show IPA),
proofreading [proof-ree-ding] /ˈprufˌri dɪŋ/ (Show IPA)
to read printers' proofs, copy, etc., to detect and mark errors, especially as an employee of a typesetting firm, newspaper office, or publishing house.
1930-35; back formation from proofreader (see proof, read)
Related forms
proofreader, noun
unproofread [uhn-proof-red] /ʌnˈprufˌrɛd/ (Show IPA), adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for proofreading
  • The author must have used spell check without taking the time to do any editing or proofreading.
  • proofreading software should only be the first line of quality control.
  • It's my own fault, for screwing things up at the proofreading stage.
  • Even now, writers of all ages catch fewer errors when proofreading their own work printed in legible fonts than in difficult ones.
  • The book would have benefited from better editing and proofreading.
  • For an article that has only six sentences, proofreading would do you some good.
  • Your article would also have benefited from better editing and proofreading.
  • It's not as though proofreading instructions are arbitrary and frivolous.
  • So even after proofreading on the screen, she handed in the paper without reading the printed version.
  • All of these problems are related to poor proofreading, which raises another question.
British Dictionary definitions for proofreading


verb -reads, -reading, -read (-ˌrɛd)
to read (copy or printer's proofs) to detect and mark errors to be corrected
Derived Forms
proofreader, noun
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 proofreading



also proof-read, 1878, back-formation from proofreader. Related: Proofread; Proofreading.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Article for proofreading

reading and marking corrections on a proof or other copy of the text of articles and books before publication. Proofreading dates from the early days of printing. A contract of 1499 held the author finally responsible for correction of proofs. In modern practice, proofs are made first from a galley, a long tray holding a column of type, and hence are called galley proofs; the term is sometimes also used for the first copy produced in photocomposition and other forms of typesetting that do not involve metal type.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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