Meaning of “underline” in the English Dictionary

british dictionary

"underline" in British English

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underlineverb [ T ]

uk /ˌʌn.dəˈlaɪn/ us /ˌʌn.dɚˈlaɪn/ also underscore

B1 to draw a line under a word, especially in order to show its importance:

All the technical words have been underlined in red.

B2 to emphasize:

She gave some shocking examples to underline the seriousness of the situation.
To underline their disgust, the crowd started throwing bottles at the stage.

More examples

  • The teacher underlined the importance of attention to detail.
  • Choose between the two forms of the verb and underline the correct answer.
  • Both candidates underlined their commitment to national security.
  • This tragic incident underlines the need for tighter safety measures.
  • These findings underline the importance of nursery education.

(Definition of “underline” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"underline" in American English

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underlineverb [ T ]

us /ˈʌn·dərˌlɑɪn/

to draw a line under a word:

to underline significant parts of a text

To underline is also to emphasize:

(Definition of “underline” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)