car·​go | \ ˈkär-(ˌ)gō How to pronounce cargo (audio) \
plural cargoes or cargos

Definition of cargo

: the goods or merchandise conveyed in a ship, airplane, or vehicle : freight Dock workers were unloading the ship's cargo.

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Examples of cargo in a Sentence

The ship was carrying a cargo of crude oil. we put all of our cargo on the pack animals and began our journey through the canyon
Recent Examples on the Web Most British slaving voyages in the 18th Century carried insurance, not just for the ship, but for its human cargo too. Jeremy Kahn, Fortune, "George Floyd protests force Britain to reckon with its role in slavery, leading some companies to pay reparations," 18 June 2020 Speaking of storage, the 2021 Rogue’s cargo volume with all seats up is unchanged at 39.3 cubic feet. Jeff Yip, Houston Chronicle, "2021 Nissan Rogue gets makeover, tech updates," 16 June 2020 There's less cargo space behind the second row of seats, with the new model offering 37 cubic feet to the old model's 39. Joey Capparella, Car and Driver, "2021 Nissan Rogue Looks Like a Big Improvement," 15 June 2020 Even in countries that tried to keep them going, cargo flights with vaccine supplies were halted by the pandemic and health workers diverted to fight it., "Slowing the coronavirus is speeding the spread of other diseases," 14 June 2020 Hassan had been on lockdown for about six weeks and took the time to repaint and reorganize his cargo van. Colleen Shalby, Los Angeles Times, "Gyms, museums, hotels, day camps, arena sports can reopen in L.A. County on Friday," 10 June 2020 The interior is capacious, with plenty of leg room (40.4 inches/1.03m) for backseat passengers and 33.2 cubic feet (940L) of cargo volume (that expands to 68.7 cubic feet/1,945L with the rear seats folded down). Jonathan M. Gitlin, Ars Technica, "The 2020 Honda CR-V Hybrid gets highly disappointing gas mileage," 10 June 2020 The Valdez oil spill in 1989 led to the banning of single-hull tankers and navigation safeguards that significantly reduced spills from cargo ships. Doug Struck, The Christian Science Monitor, "Deepwater Horizon: What we learned from worst oil spill ever," 10 June 2020 Semmes, during the Civil War, captained the CSS Alabama and operated as a commerce raider who roamed the high seas intercepting cargo ships that might be carrying goods for the U.S. al, "Alabama AG Steve Marshall asks Mobile to clarify reason behind Confederate monument removal," 9 June 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cargo.' 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 cargo

1657, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for cargo

Spanish, load, charge, from cargar to load, from Late Latin carricare — more at charge entry 1

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Time Traveler for cargo

Time Traveler

The first known use of cargo was in 1657

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Statistics for cargo

Last Updated

21 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Cargo.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for cargo


How to pronounce cargo (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of cargo

: something that is carried from one place to another by boat, airplane, etc.


car·​go | \ ˈkär-gō How to pronounce cargo (audio) \
plural cargoes or cargos

Kids Definition of cargo

: the goods carried by a ship, airplane, or vehicle

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More from Merriam-Webster on cargo

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for cargo

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with cargo

Spanish Central: Translation of cargo

Nglish: Translation of cargo for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of cargo for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about cargo

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