Deadline meaning

dĕd'līn'
The definition of a deadline is when something is due, or the latest time by which something must be completed.

If you have to have a report in by 5 PM or it is considered late, 5 PM is an example of a deadline.

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A time limit, as for payment of a debt or completion of an assignment.
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A boundary line in a prison that prisoners can cross only at the risk of being shot.
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To govern by setting a time limit.
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A line around a prison beyond which a prisoner could go only at the risk of being shot by a guard.
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A boundary which it is forbidden to cross.
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The latest time by which something must be done or completed.

A deadline for payment, publication, etc.

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A date on or before which something must be completed.

I must make this deadline or my boss will kill me!

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(archaic) A guideline marked on a plate for a printing press.
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(archaic) A line which doesn't move.
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(archaic) A boundary around a prison.
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(military) To render an item non-mission-capable; to ground an aircraft, etc.
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Origin of deadline

The context of a due date originated in journalism, probably from an earlier usage in printing, representing a guideline marked on a plate for a printing press (inside which all content should appear). According to the Oxford English Dictionary, early usage refers simply to lines that do not move, such as one used in angling; slightly later American usage includes a boundary around a prison which prisoners must not cross.