cou·​ri·​er | \ ˈku̇r-ē-ər How to pronounce courier (audio) , ˈkər-ē-, ˈkə-rē- \

Definition of courier

1 : messenger: such as
a : a member of a diplomatic (see diplomatic sense 2) service entrusted with bearing messages
b(1) : an espionage agent transferring secret information
(2) : a runner of contraband (see contraband sense 2) drug couriers
c : a member of the armed services whose duties include carrying mail, information, or supplies
2 : a traveler's paid attendant especially : a tourists' guide employed by a travel agency

Examples of courier in a Sentence

Police recently arrested a drug courier in our neighborhood. A courier just left a package for you on the porch.
Recent Examples on the Web Like millions of Americans, last May found Ryan Hanson and Andrew Leone, cofounders of on-demand courier service Dispatch, heartbroken over the news of George Floyd’s death. Kristin Stoller, Forbes, 9 Mar. 2021 Seems a couple of addicts murdered a courier bearing a ball of dope that was supposed to be split between Wu and Al. Matt Zoller Seitz, Vulture, 23 Dec. 2021 The initial courier employees will work an average of 25 hours a week, says DoorDash’s Rettig. Aarian Marshall, Wired, 6 Dec. 2021 The officers, all but one member of an eight-member jury, condemned the U.S. government’s conduct in a clemency letter on behalf of Majid Khan, a suburban Baltimore high school graduate turned Qaeda courier. New York Times, 31 Oct. 2021 Deutsche Post DHL, the nation’s largest courier service, has 17,000 e-bicycles and e-tricycles in its fleet, and is looking to acquire even more by 2025. Camille Squires, Quartz, 10 Aug. 2021 After the virus spread across America, ridesharing use plummeted, and online shopping and grocery orders skyrocketed, the fraudsters placed more emphasis on fake courier accounts for the delivery businesses, according to the complaint. Thomas Brewster, Forbes, 21 May 2021 Gojek was started as a call center in 2010 by Nadiem Makarim to arrange courier deliveries in Jakarta. Fortune, 17 May 2021 Another crowd formed; a courier wearing cat-ear headphones got off his skateboard and took a video. Sarah Larson, The New Yorker, 4 Dec. 2021

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

1579, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for courier

borrowed from Middle French corier, courrier, borrowed from Italian corriere, from correre "to run" (going back to Latin currere) + -iere -ier — more at current entry 1

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The first known use of courier was in 1579

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Last Updated

21 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Courier.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for courier



English Language Learners Definition of courier

: a person whose job is to carry messages, packages, etc., from one person or place to another
: a business that is used to send messages, packages, etc.
: a person who is employed by a travel company and whose job is to help people who are on holiday


cou·​ri·​er | \ ˈku̇r-ē-ər How to pronounce courier (audio) , ˈkər- \

Kids Definition of courier

More from Merriam-Webster on courier

Nglish: Translation of courier for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of courier for Arabic Speakers


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