ad·​dress | \ ə-ˈdres How to pronounce address (audio) , a- also ˈa-ˌdres \
addressed; addressing; addresses

Definition of address

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to mark directions for delivery on address a letter
b : to consign to the care of another (such as an agent or factor)
2a : to direct the efforts or attention of (oneself) will address himself to the problem
b : to deal with : treat … intrigued by the chance to address important issues …— I. L. Horowitz
3a : to communicate directly addresses his thanks to his host
b : to speak or write directly to especially : to deliver a formal speech to The president will address the nation by television.
4 : to greet by a prescribed form how to address an archbishop
5 golf : to adjust the club and one's stance preparatory to hitting (the ball)
6 : to identify (something, such as a computer peripheral or memory location) by an address or a name for information transfer
7 archaic
a : direct, aim
b : to direct to go : send
8 archaic : to make ready especially : dress

intransitive verb

obsolete : to direct one's speech or attentions


ad·​dress | \ ə-ˈdres How to pronounce address (audio) , for senses 1, 2, & 3 also ˈa-ˌdres \

Definition of address (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : a place where a person or organization may be communicated with asked for her name, address, and phone number
b : directions for delivery on the outside of an object (such as a letter or package) an envelope with an illegible address
c : the designation of place of delivery placed between the heading and salutation on a business letter
d : the designation of an account from which one can send or receive e-mail an e-mail address
2a : a location (as in the memory of a computer) where particular information is stored
b : a series of usually alphanumeric characters that specifies the storage location (as on a network or in a computer's memory) of particular information an Internet address A unique number called an IP address identifies every computer that's connected to the Internet. An IP address looks something like this: Each of the four parts of an IP address can have from one to three digits.— Kim Komando
3 : a formal communication especially : a prepared speech delivered to a special audience or on a special occasion Lincoln's Gettysburg Address
4 : dutiful and courteous attention especially in courtship usually used in pluralShe spurned his addresses."Here is a young man wishing to pay his addresses to you, with everything to recommend him."— Jane Austen
5a : readiness and capability for dealing (as with a person or problem) skillfully and smoothly : adroitness
b obsolete : a making ready also : a state of preparedness
6a : manner of bearing oneself a man of rude address
b : manner of speaking or singing : delivery was pleased with the tenor's ease of address
7 golf : the stance of the player and the position of the club preparatory to hitting the ball

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Other Words from address


addresser noun

Choose the Right Synonym for address


tact, address, poise, savoir faire mean skill and grace in dealing with others. tact implies delicate and considerate perception of what is appropriate. questions showing a lack of tact address stresses dexterity and grace in dealing with new and trying situations and may imply success in attaining one's ends. brought it off with remarkable address poise may imply both tact and address but stresses self-possession and ease in meeting difficult situations. answered the accusations with unruffled poise savoir faire is likely to stress worldly experience and a sure awareness of what is proper or expedient. the savoir faire of a seasoned traveler

Examples of address in a Sentence

Verb I've addressed the letter, but it still needs a stamp. The package is sealed; it just needs to be addressed. We spent the afternoon addressing invitations to all our friends. The letter was returned because it had been addressed incorrectly. She ignored most of the people at the table, addressing only the man who was sitting next to her. One of the characters addresses the audience directly throughout the play. Most of the speaker's remarks were addressed to those with experience in the industry. Before the awards were given, the mayor addressed the crowd. Noun Write your name, address, and phone number in the spaces provided. We listened to the President's inaugural address on the radio. She was asked to give a formal address at the ceremony.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb This month, the company hired dozens of outside security consultants to quickly address questions about security flaws. Sara Castellanos, WSJ, "Zoom Adds Oracle to Its List of Cloud Providers," 29 Apr. 2020 This complicated and invasive apparatus can be necessary to address ARDS. Steven Levy, Wired, "Stewart Brand Is 81—and He Doesn’t Want to Go on a Ventilator," 29 Apr. 2020 As best as anybody can tell, Cuomo is doing exactly what many governors in states around the country are also doing to address the pandemic with fewer plaudits. Osita Nwanevu, The New Republic, "It’s Time to Build a Better Political Culture," 29 Apr. 2020 In September, your ability to make astute financial and business decisions is at a peak, making that a good time to address fiscal security. oregonlive, "Horoscope for April 29, 2020: Cancer, let ideas simmer; Pisces, don’t give in to worries," 29 Apr. 2020 Miley Cyrus will perform along with Lil Nas X. There will also be appearances by Awkwafina, Simone Biles and Jennifer Garner, who are all joining in to address the class of 2020. Kimberly Wilson, Essence, "Oprah Winfrey To Deliver Virtual Commencement Address For Class Of 2020," 28 Apr. 2020 Merkel is due to address the lower house of parliament on Thursday morning to update lawmakers on the crisis and her expectations for a virtual summit later in the day with European counterparts. Birgit Jennen,, "Merkel Coalition Agrees on New $10.8 Billion Crisis Package," 28 Apr. 2020 Queen and Harrison were brought in to directly address the sort of shortcomings that allowed Tennessee running back Derrick Henry to roll for 195 yards in the 28-12 playoff loss than ended the Ravens’ 2019 season. Nathan Baird, cleveland, "Why the Baltimore Ravens doubled up at linebacker with Ohio State football’s Malik Harrison in NFL Draft 2020," 28 Apr. 2020 The policy aligns with grading policies recommended by state universities to address the sudden switch to distance learning following coronavirus school closures in mid-March. Jill Tucker,, "San Francisco schools abandon all A’s grading policy," 28 Apr. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun In that case, the bank will reject the deposit, and the IRS will issue you a paper check, which will be mailed to the address on your tax return. Aimee Picchi, CBS News, "20 million Americans still waiting for their stimulus checks," 14 May 2020 Small Business Advice has had the site for years, not just since Mnuchin flubbed the address. Philip Elliott, Time, "This Company’s Coronavirus Loan Struggle Reveals the Paycheck Protection Program’s Pitfalls," 13 May 2020 The address appeared many times in The Dallas Morning News’ social columns throughout the ‘20s and ‘30s. Dallas News, "Get out of the house on Mother’s Day and take a self-guided driving tour of posh Dallas homes," 8 May 2020 The return address was the state prison in Florence. Karina Bland, azcentral, "The donation in the envelope was small, but the meaning behind it was huge," 7 May 2020 Expanding higher-quality broadband service to rural areas figured prominently in the platforms of Democratic presidential candidates; President Donald Trump called for it in his latest State of the Union address. Richard Mertens, The Christian Science Monitor, "Rural America lags on fast internet. Now small co-ops are building it.," 6 May 2020 The commencement address along with valedictorian remarks will be broadcast on the radio for students and their families to listen to while driving. Mj Slaby, Indianapolis Star, "IMS to host 2020 graduation for Speedway High School," 5 May 2020 In 2018, Ji was a guest of President Trump for the State of the Union address. Jay Nordlinger, National Review, "Up from North Korea," 4 May 2020 For more information on how to connect to the eels, visit the aquarium’s website (link in Japanese) for the iCloud addresses. Cailey Rizzo, Travel + Leisure, "A Japanese Aquarium Wants You to FaceTime an Eel With Social Anxiety," 1 May 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'address.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of address


14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 3a


1539, in the meaning defined at sense 4

History and Etymology for address


Middle English adressen "to guide, direct, set in order, mark with a destination," borrowed from Anglo-French adrescer, adresser "to make straight, direct, guide," from a- (going back to Latin ad- ad-) + drescer, dresser "to direct, put right" — more at dress entry 1


in part derivative of address entry 1, in part borrowed from Middle French adresce, adresse, noun derivative of adrescer, adresser

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Learn More about address

Time Traveler for address

Time Traveler

The first known use of address was in the 14th century

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Statistics for address

Last Updated

2 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Address.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 May. 2020.

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More Definitions for address


How to pronounce address (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of address

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to write on an envelope, package, letter, etc., the name and address of the person or business it is being sent to
: to speak to (a person or group)
: to use a specified name or title when speaking or writing to (someone)


How to pronounce address (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of address (Entry 2 of 2)

: the words and numbers that are used to describe the location of a building and that are written on letters, envelopes, and packages so that they can be mailed to that location
: the letters, numbers, and symbols that are used to direct an e-mail message or to show the location of a site on the Internet
: a formal speech


ad·​dress | \ ə-ˈdres How to pronounce address (audio) \
addressed; addressing

Kids Definition of address

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to put directions for delivery on address a letter
2 : to speak or write to Bleakly, Roy looked up to address the grownups.— Carl Hiaasen, Hoot
3 : to use a specified name or title when speaking or writing to (someone) The children address me as “sir.”
4 : to deal with : give attention to address a problem


ad·​dress | \ ə-ˈdres How to pronounce address (audio) , ˈa-ˌdres \

Kids Definition of address (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the place where a person can usually be reached a business address
2 : the directions for delivery placed on mail
3 : the symbols (as numerals or letters) that identify the location where particular information (as a home page) is stored on a computer especially on the Internet
4 : a formal speech The president will give an address at the ceremony.
5 : the name of a computer account from which e-mail can be sent or received

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More from Merriam-Webster on address

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for address

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with address

Spanish Central: Translation of address

Nglish: Translation of address for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of address for Arabic Speakers

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