verb dic·tate \ˈdik-ˌtāt, dik-ˈ\

: to speak or read (something) to a person who writes it down or to a machine that records it

: to say or state (something) with authority or power

: to make (something) necessary


Full Definition of DICTATE

intransitive verb
:  to give dictation
:  to speak or act domineeringly :  prescribe
transitive verb
:  to speak or read for a person to transcribe or for a machine to record
a :  to issue as an order
b :  to impose, pronounce, or specify authoritatively
c :  to require or determine necessarily <injuries dictated the choice of players>

Examples of DICTATE

  1. She's dictating a letter to her secretary.
  2. They insisted on being able to dictate the terms of surrender.
  3. Tradition dictates that the youngest member should go first.
  4. The basket's function dictates its size and shape.

Origin of DICTATE

Latin dictatus, past participle of dictare to assert, dictate, frequentative of dicere to say — more at diction
First Known Use: 1581

Related to DICTATE

Rhymes with DICTATE

abate, ablate, adnate, aerate, age-mate, agnate, airdate, airfreight, alate, arête, await, backdate, baldpate, bandmate, baseplate, bedmate, bedplate, berate, birthrate, bistate, bite plate, blank slate, blind date, blue plate, bookplate, breastplate, casemate, castrate, caudate, cell plate, cerate, cheapskate, checkmate, chelate, chordate, citrate, classmate, clavate, cognate, collate, comate, conflate, connate, Cook Strait, cordate, create, cremate, crenate, curate, cut-rate, deadweight, death rate, debate, deflate, delate, dentate, derate, dilate, disrate, donate, doorplate, downstate, drawplate, elate, end plate, equate, estate, faceplate, falcate, fellate, filtrate, first-rate, fishplate, fixate, flatmate, floodgate, fluxgate, flyweight, folate, formate, frustrate, gelate, gestate, ground state, gyrate, hamate, hastate, headgate, Hell Gate, helpmate, home plate, hot plate, housemate, hydrate, ice-skate, inflate, ingrate, inmate, innate, instate, irate, jailbait, Kuwait, lactate, lapse rate, legate, liftgate, ligate, lightweight, liquate, lobate, locate, lunate, lustrate, lych-gate, lyrate, magnate, makebate, makeweight, mandate, messmate, migrate, misstate, mutate, nameplate, narrate, negate, Newgate, nitrate, notate, nutate, oblate, of late, orate, ornate, ovate, palmate, palpate, peltate, phonate, pinnate, placate, playdate, playmate, plicate, portrait, postdate, predate, prime rate, probate, prolate, pronate, prorate, prostate, prostrate, punctate, pupate, quadrate, rain date, ramate, rebate, red-bait, relate, restate, roommate, rostrate, rotate, saccate, schoolmate, seatmate, sedate, sensate, septate, serrate, shipmate, short weight, slave state, soleplate, soul mate, spectate, spicate, squamate, stagnate, stalemate, stellate, striate, sublate, substrate, sulcate, summate, tailgate, teammate, Tebet, tenth-rate, ternate, terneplate, testate, third-rate, tinplate, to date, toeplate, tollgate, tractate, translate, tristate, truncate, unweight, update, uprate, upstate, V-8, vacate, vallate, valvate, vibrate, virgate, vulgate, whitebait, workmate


noun dic·tate \ˈdik-ˌtāt\

: an order or direction given with authority

: a rule or principle that guides something (such as an activity or a person's behavior)

Full Definition of DICTATE

a :  an authoritative rule, prescription, or injunction
b :  a ruling principle <according to the dictates of your conscience>
:  a command by one in authority

Examples of DICTATE

  1. <a starchily worded dictate from on high concerning the company's dress code>

First Known Use of DICTATE



Next Word in the Dictionary: dictatinglyPrevious Word in the Dictionary: dictaphonicAll Words Near: dictate
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