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Etymology 1[edit]

From the Latin caret (it lacks), the third-person singular present active indicative form of careō (I lack).


caret (plural carets)

  1. A mark: ⟨  ⟩ used by writers and proof readers to indicate that something is to be inserted in the place marked by the caret.
  2. (graphical user interface) An indicator, often a blinking line or bar, indicating where the next insertion or other edit will take place. Also called a cursor.
  3. (nonstandard) A háček.
    • 1944, Maro Beath Jones, Inclusive Uniform Alphabet for Russian, Bulgarian, Serb-Croatian, Czech, Polish (Claremont Slavic Series, Claremont College), page 10
      […] the more conventional semivocalic j and the caret (ˇ) respectively.
    • 1948, Bohumil Emil Mikula, Progressive Czech (Bohemian) (Chicago: Czechoslovak National Council of America), 6
      The caret (ˇ), háček, is used over the following consonants: c, d, n, t, r, s, and z to indicate the soft sound. The caret (ˇ) is also used over the vowel e (See Pronunciation II, b, p, v).
    • 1991, Michael Shapiro, The Sense of Change: Language as History (Indiana University Press; ISBN 0253352037, 9780253352033), page 58
      In contemporary Czech, the “hook” or caret is no longer in use for lower-case t and d when the latter are palatal; instead, an apostrophe is used (t’, d’) This development is clearly connected with the practical difficulty encountered in printing a caret over letter stems that are too thin.
Derived terms[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]



caret (plural carets)

  1. A kind of turtle, the hawksbill.

Part or all of this entry has been imported from the 1913 edition of Webster’s Dictionary, which is now free of copyright and hence in the public domain. The imported definitions may be significantly out of date, and any more recent senses may be completely missing.





  1. third-person singular present active indicative of careō