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noun char·ter \ˈchär-tər\

Simple Definition of charter

  • : a document issued by a government that gives rights to a person or group

  • : a document which declares that a city, town, school, or corporation has been established

  • : a document that describes the basic laws, principles, etc., of a group

Full Definition of charter

  1. 1 :  a written instrument or contract (as a deed) executed in due form

  2. 2 a :  a grant or guarantee of rights, franchises, or privileges from the sovereign power of a state or country b :  a written instrument that creates and defines the franchises of a city, educational institution, or corporation c :  constitution

  3. 3 :  a written instrument from the authorities of a society creating a lodge or branch

  4. 4 :  a special privilege, immunity, or exemption

  5. 5 :  a mercantile lease of a ship or some principal part of it

  6. 6 :  a charter travel arrangement

Examples of charter

  1. The charter allows for unrestricted trading.

Origin of charter

Middle English chartre, from Anglo-French, from Medieval Latin chartula, from Latin, diminutive of charta

First Known Use: 13th century

Rhymes with charter



verb char·ter

Simple Definition of charter

  • : to give a charter to (a government, corporation, etc.)

  • : to hire (a ship, bus, etc.) for temporary use

Full Definition of charter

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 a :  to establish, enable, or convey by charter b British :  certify <a chartered mechanical engineer>

  3. 2 :  to hire, rent, or lease for usually exclusive and temporary use <chartered a boat for deep-sea fishing>

char·ter·er play \-tər-ər\ noun

Examples of charter

  1. The city was chartered in 1837.

  2. The team chartered a plane.

15th Century

First Known Use of charter

15th century

Synonym Discussion of charter

hire, let, lease, rent, charter mean to engage or grant for use at a price. hire and let, strictly speaking, are complementary terms, hire implying the act of engaging or taking for use and let the granting of use <we hired a car for the summer> <decided to let the cottage to a young couple>. lease strictly implies a letting under the terms of a contract but is often applied to hiring on a lease <the diplomat leased an apartment for a year>. rent stresses the payment of money for the full use of property and may imply either hiring or letting <instead of buying a house, they decided to rent> <will not rent to families with children>. charter applies to the hiring or letting of a vehicle usually for exclusive use <charter a bus to go to the game>.

Other Transportation Terms



adjective char·ter

Simple Definition of charter

  • : hired for temporary use

Full Definition of charter

  1. :  of, relating to, or being a travel arrangement in which transportation (as a bus or plane) is hired by and for one specific group of people <a charter flight>


First Known Use of charter


Other Transportation Terms

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