con·​sul | \ ˈkän(t)-səl How to pronounce consul (audio) \

Definition of consul

1a : either of two annually elected chief magistrates of the Roman republic
b : one of three chief magistrates of the French republic from 1799 to 1804
2 : an official appointed by a government to reside in a foreign country to represent the commercial interests of citizens of the appointing country the American consul in Rome

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Other Words from consul

consulship \ ˈkän(t)-​səl-​ˌship How to pronounce consulship (audio) \ noun

Examples of consul in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Benoît de Maillet, the French consul in Cairo, was the first European to delve beneath the bindings and take extensive notes. National Geographic, "Europe's morbid 'mummy craze' has been an obsession for centuries," 10 Dec. 2019 The 1852 campaign bio for Franklin Pierce was a tonier affair, its author being the candidate’s Bowdoin College classmate Nathaniel Hawt, who later accepted the job of U.S. consul in Liverpool as his reward. Thomas Mallon, WSJ, "‘Author in Chief’ Review: The Oval Office Book Club," 7 Feb. 2020 Instead, Roman citizens elected magistrates, led by two consuls, in a republic which offered a model to America’s own Founding Fathers. Joanna Kenty, The Conversation, "Julius Caesar refused to be crowned king," 12 Mar. 2020 Mohammed al-Otaibi, the Saudi consul in Istanbul who gave reporters a tour of the consulate days after Khashoggi’s killing, was released without charge., "BEIRUT — A court in Saudi Arabia sentenced five men to death and three to prison terms over the killing of Saudi dissident writer Jamal Khashoggi in Istanbul last year, the kingdom’s public prosecutor said Monday.," 24 Dec. 2019 Police have arrested on suspicion of corruption Erkin Sopokov, the consul in Istanbul when Saimaiti died, after his car was found near the scene of the shooting. The Economist, "A vast smuggling ring is exposed in Kyrgyzstan, to popular outrage," 5 Dec. 2019 Statesman and scholar Best known now for his contested discovery of the source of the Blue Nile in Ethiopia, Scottish nobleman James Bruce was serving as the British consul in the coastal city of Algiers (today the capital of Algeria) in 1763. Rubén Montoya, National Geographic, "The Sahara buried this ancient Roman city—preserving it for centuries," 30 July 2019 Spanish elite police had already escorted the Spanish Embassy’s chargé d’affaires and its consul to the Mexican Embassy... Mary Anastasia O’grady, WSJ, "Spain’s Mysterious Ties to Wanted Bolivians," 5 Jan. 2020 Through clever persistence, the U.S. consul in Gibraltar, Horatio Sprague, had successfully kept the there by pressuring the town’s merchants to refuse the Confederates all necessary supplies. Graham Cornwell, Smithsonian Magazine, "The Diplomatic Intrigue That Gave Morocco a Cameo Appearance in the U.S. Civil War," 21 Jan. 2020

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for consul

Middle English, from Latin; perhaps akin to Latin consulere to consult

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Time Traveler for consul

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for consul

Last Updated

3 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Consul.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for consul


How to pronounce consul (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of consul

: a government official whose job is to live in a foreign country and protect and help the citizens of his or her own country who are traveling, living, or doing business there
: either one of two chief officials of the ancient Roman republic who were elected every year


con·​sul | \ ˈkän-səl How to pronounce consul (audio) \

Kids Definition of consul

: an official appointed by a government to live in a foreign country in order to look after the commercial interests of citizens of the appointing country


con·​sul | \ ˈkän-səl How to pronounce consul (audio) \

Legal Definition of consul

: an official appointed by a government to reside in a foreign country in order to represent the commercial interests of citizens of the appointing country

Other Words from consul

consular \ -​sə-​lər How to pronounce consular (audio) \ adjective
consulship noun

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