countermand

verb
coun·​ter·​mand | \ ˈkau̇n-tər-ˌmand How to pronounce countermand (audio) , ˌkau̇n-tər-ˈmand How to pronounce countermand (audio) \
countermanded; countermanding; countermands

Definition of countermand

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to revoke (a command) by a contrary order
2 : to recall or order back by a superseding contrary order countermand reinforcements

countermand

noun
coun·​ter·​mand | \ ˈkau̇n-tər-ˌmand How to pronounce countermand (audio) \

Definition of countermand (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a contrary order
2 : the revocation of an order or command

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Verb

In the military, one's mandate is to follow the commands (and sometimes the "countermands") of the officers. Doing their bidding is not particularly commendable - it's simply mandatory. The Latin verb mandare, meaning "to entrust" or "to order," is the authority behind "countermand." It's also behind the words "mandate," "command," "demand," "commend" (which can mean "to entrust" as well as "to praise"), and "mandatory." "Countermand" came to English via Anglo French, where the prefix cuntre- ("against") was combined with the verb "mander" ("to command"). It has been a part of our language since the 1400s.

Examples of countermand in a Sentence

Verb Orders to blow up the bridge were countermanded.
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Alongi, whose family has run a restaurant in Du Quoin since 1933, said residents had asked him to somehow countermand an Oct. 19 order by Gov. J.B. Pritzker (D) reimposing a ban on indoor seating at dining establishments. Will Englund, Washington Post, 26 Feb. 2021 Republican support for the lawsuit and its call to throw out millions of votes in four battleground states was rooted in baseless claims of fraud, an extraordinary display of the party’s willingness to countermand the will of voters. Nomaan Merchant And Alanna Durkin Richer, baltimoresun.com, 12 Dec. 2020 Republican support for the lawsuit and its call to throw out millions of votes in four battleground states was rooted in baseless claims of fraud, an extraordinary display of the party’s willingness to countermand the will of voters. Nomaan Merchant And Alanna Durkin Richer, baltimoresun.com, 12 Dec. 2020 Republican support for the lawsuit and its call to throw out millions of votes in four battleground states was rooted in baseless claims of fraud, an extraordinary display of the party’s willingness to countermand the will of voters. Nomaan Merchant And Alanna Durkin Richer, baltimoresun.com, 12 Dec. 2020 Even the defense secretary, who is in the chain of command, has no legal authority to countermand the order. Jamie Mcintyre, Washington Examiner, 14 Jan. 2021 Republican support for the lawsuit and its call to throw out millions of votes in four battleground states was rooted in baseless claims of fraud, an extraordinary display of the party’s willingness to countermand the will of voters. Nomaan Merchant And Alanna Durkin Richer, baltimoresun.com, 12 Dec. 2020 Republican support for the lawsuit and its call to throw out millions of votes in four battleground states was rooted in baseless claims of fraud, an extraordinary display of the party’s willingness to countermand the will of voters. Nomaan Merchant And Alanna Durkin Richer, baltimoresun.com, 12 Dec. 2020 Republican support for the lawsuit and its call to throw out millions of votes in four battleground states was rooted in baseless claims of fraud, an extraordinary display of the party’s willingness to countermand the will of voters. Nomaan Merchant And Alanna Durkin Richer, baltimoresun.com, 12 Dec. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun It was also suspected of attacking commercial shipping and Saudi oil installations, leading Mr Trump to order, then countermand, a military strike on Iranian targets. The Economist, 26 Dec. 2019

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

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1548, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for countermand

Verb

Middle English countermaunden, from Anglo-French cuntremander, from cuntre- counter- + mander to command, from Latin mandare — more at mandate

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Time Traveler for countermand

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The first known use of countermand was in the 15th century

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Cite this Entry

“Countermand.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/countermand. Accessed 25 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for countermand

countermand

verb

English Language Learners Definition of countermand

formal : to cancel (an order) especially by giving a new order

More from Merriam-Webster on countermand

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for countermand

Nglish: Translation of countermand for Spanish Speakers

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