department

noun
de·​part·​ment | \ di-ˈpärt-mənt How to pronounce department (audio) \

Definition of department

1a : a distinct sphere : province that's not my department
b : a category consisting especially of a measurable activity or attribute lacking in the trustworthiness department— Garrison Keillor
2 : a functional or territorial division: such as
a : a major administrative division of a government
b : a major territorial administrative subdivision
c : a division of a college or school giving instruction in a particular subject
d : a major division of a business
e : a section of a department store handling a particular kind of merchandise
f : a territorial subdivision made for the administration and training of military units

Other Words from department

departmental \ di-​ˌpärt-​ˈmen-​tᵊl How to pronounce department (audio) , ˌdē-​ \ adjective
departmentally \ di-​ˌpärt-​ˈmen-​tə-​lē How to pronounce department (audio) , ˌdē-​ \ adverb

Examples of department in a Sentence

Your letter has been forwarded to our sales department. When you get to the hospital, go directly to the X-ray department. the university's math and science departments the department of modern languages She joined the town's police department.
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Recent Examples on the Web The state health department, which is led by Surgeon General Dr. Joseph Ladapo, who opposes mandates and has drawn national attention over a refusal to wear a face mask during a meeting, will have authority to define exemption standards. Anthony Izaguirre, ajc, 21 Nov. 2021 The state health department, which is led by Surgeon General Dr. Joseph Ladapo, who opposes mandates and has drawn national attention over a refusal to wear a face mask during a meeting, will have authority to define exemption standards. Anthony Izaguirre, Anchorage Daily News, 21 Nov. 2021 Samuels was placed under arrest and taken to the police department, where she was booked, police said. Christine Dempsey, courant.com, 19 Nov. 2021 The state health department, which is led by Surgeon General Dr. Joseph Ladapo, who opposes mandates, will have authority to define exemption standards. Democrat-gazette Staff From Wire Reports, Arkansas Online, 19 Nov. 2021 According to an analysis by Baltimore’s planning department, Mount Clare’s population fell about 20% over the last decade, to around 1,800 residents as of the 2020 Census. Stephanie García, baltimoresun.com, 18 Nov. 2021 The pair had previously worked together at Larkin High School in Elgin when Makishima served as a lead teacher in the English as a Second Language (ESL) department, while Bonuma was her supervisor. George Castle, chicagotribune.com, 17 Nov. 2021 In addition, police-department budgets recently received a one-time boost through federal pandemic stimulus funds. Dara Kam, orlandosentinel.com, 17 Nov. 2021 The transportation department in the district, composed of more than 159,000 students and more than 200 schools, oversees a complex operation of more than 1,000 school buses. Washington Post, 16 Nov. 2021

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

1735, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for department

French département, from Old French, act of dividing, from departir

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Time Traveler for department

Time Traveler

The first known use of department was in 1735

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Dictionary Entries Near department

département

department

departmentalism

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Statistics for department

Last Updated

24 Nov 2021

Cite this Entry

“Department.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/department. Accessed 5 Dec. 2021.

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More Definitions for department

department

noun

English Language Learners Definition of department

: one of the major parts of a company, organization, government, or school
: an area in a store where a particular kind of product is sold
: a subject or activity that a person is interested in or responsible for

department

noun
de·​part·​ment | \ di-ˈpärt-mənt How to pronounce department (audio) \

Kids Definition of department

: a special part or division of an organization (as a government or college)

More from Merriam-Webster on department

Nglish: Translation of department for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of department for Arabic Speakers

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