de·​par·​ture | \ di-ˈpär-chər How to pronounce departure (audio) \

Definition of departure

1a(1) : the act or an instance of departing
(2) archaic : death
b : a setting out (as on a new course)
2 : divergence sense 2 a departure from tradition

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Examples of departure in a Sentence

What is your time of departure? You should plan to arrive at the airport an hour before departure. a schedule of arrivals and departures The departures of several key employees have caused problems for the company. her sudden departure from the company The team has struggled since the departure of its head coach. His previous movies have all been comedies, so this dramatic role is a real departure for him.
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Recent Examples on the Web

The conscious and serious color choice was a departure from the more traditionally feminine hues and styles typically seen on the red carpet, serving as a means of protesting harmful gendered prescriptions. Sara Radin, Teen Vogue, "How Color in Fashion Has Been Used Throughout History To Display Political Solidarity," 14 May 2019 Britain’s departure from the EU showed that leaving the club is possible, if painful. The Economist, "Breaking point: December 2020," 5 July 2018 With Friday’s rejection of the deal Mrs. May negotiated with the EU for Britain’s orderly departure, Brexit outcomes that once seemed radical become more likely. Jason Douglas, WSJ, "May’s Brexit Deal Is Rejected for a Third Time by Lawmakers," 29 Mar. 2019 Unlike other character departures (think: Arizona and April at the end of season 14), Derek's didn't come with a warning. Amanda Garrity, Good Housekeeping, "Here's the Real Reason Why Patrick Dempsey Left 'Grey's Anatomy'," 28 Mar. 2019 The announcement comes after several high-profile departures from the Trump administration this year, including White House Chief of Staff John Kelly, and Attorney General Jeff Sessions, and Environmental Protection Agency head Scott Pruitt. Andrew Liptak, The Verge, "Trump’s Interior Secretary will step down at the end of the year," 15 Dec. 2018 But late on July 8, Brexit Secretary David Davis, the man nominally responsible for negotiating the terms of departure, left her government in protest at the plan. Ian Bremmer, Time, "The United Kingdom’s ‘Brexit Dream’ has Become a Waking Nightmare," 12 July 2018 Steam rose from two smokestacks, the crew flitted among three decks, and a horn announced that departure was imminent. Erik Maza, Town & Country, "Chanel Sets Sail for New York City," 15 Nov. 2018 Greenblatt's official departure will likely be as late as May next year at the end of the 2018-19 TV season, according to the Hollywood Reporter. Amy Lieu, Fox News, "Bob Greenblatt, NBC Entertainment chairman, to step down, reports say," 22 Sep. 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a(1)

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Statistics for departure

Last Updated

17 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for departure

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

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More Definitions for departure



English Language Learners Definition of departure

: the act of leaving a place especially to start a journey
: the act of leaving a job, an organization, etc.
: a new or different way of doing something


de·​par·​ture | \ di-ˈpär-chər How to pronounce departure (audio) \

Kids Definition of departure

1 : an act of leaving or setting out We waved upon the ship's departure.
2 : an act of turning away or aside (as from a way of doing things) a departure from tradition



Legal Definition of departure

: a failure to follow : a deviation from a course or standard an upward departure from the sentencing guidelines

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Comments on departure

What made you want to look up departure? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


highly pertinent or appropriate

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