Definition of "interrupt" [in•ter•rupt]

  • To break the continuity or uniformity of: Rain interrupted our baseball game. (verb-transitive)
  • To hinder or stop the action or discourse of (someone) by breaking in on: The baby interrupted me while I was on the phone. (verb-transitive)
  • To break in on an action or discourse. (verb-intransitive)
  • Computer Science A signal to a computer that stops the execution of a running program so that another action can be performed. (noun)
  • Computer Science A circuit that conveys a signal stopping the execution of a running program. (noun)
  • To break the continuity of (an action, event, etc) or hinder (a person) by intrusion (verb)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

  • To cease to perform (some action) (verb)
  • To obstruct (a view) (verb)
  • To prevent or disturb (a conversation, discussion, etc) by questions, interjections, or comment (verb)
  • The signal to initiate the stopping of the running of one computer program in order to run another, after which the running of the original program is usually continued (noun) (c) HarperCollins Publishers Ltd 2016

Use "interrupt" in a sentence
  • "The same applies when incoming phone calls interrupt your game."
  • "Phone calls interrupt our workflow and are more time-consuming to deal with than emails; plus they don't allow the PR person to convey as much information as an email message."
  • "But what we didn't have were a dozen other little chits keeping track of other conditions, and we had few "interrupt" - style powers that would trigger on other people's turns."