dispatch

verb
dis·​patch | \di-ˈspach \

Definition of dispatch 

(Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to send off or away with promptness or speed dispatch a letter dispatch an ambulance to the scene especially : to send off on official business dispatch a messenger

2a : to kill with quick efficiency dispatched the deer with one shot

b obsolete : deprive

3 : to dispose of (something, such as a task) rapidly or efficiently anxious to dispatch the matter … household business could not be dispatched hastily by Mrs. Tulliver.— George Eliot

4 : defeat sense 3 easily dispatching each team they played

intransitive verb

archaic : to make haste : hurry

dispatch

noun
dis·​patch | \di-ˈspach, ˈdis-ˌpach \

Definition of dispatch (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : a message sent with speed especially : an important official message sent by a diplomatic, military, or naval officer sent a dispatch to headquarters

b : a news item filed (see file entry 4 sense 2b) by a correspondent dispatches from the war zone

2 : the act of dispatching: such as

a obsolete : dismissal

b : the act of killing

c(1) : prompt settlement (as of an item of business) Tom Pinch and his sister having to part, for the dispatch of the morning's business …, had no opportunity of discussing the subject at that time.— Charles Dickens

(2) : quick riddance

d : a sending off : shipment the immediate dispatch of supplies to the front

3 : promptness and efficiency in performance or transmission done with dispatch

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Other Words from dispatch

Verb

dispatcher noun

Choose the Right Synonym for dispatch

Verb

kill, slay, murder, assassinate, dispatch, execute mean to deprive of life. kill merely states the fact of death caused by an agency in any manner. killed in an accident frost killed the plants slay is a chiefly literary term implying deliberateness and violence but not necessarily motive. slew thousands of the Philistines murder specifically implies stealth and motive and premeditation and therefore full moral responsibility. convicted of murdering a rival assassinate applies to deliberate killing openly or secretly often for political motives. terrorists assassinated the Senator dispatch stresses quickness and directness in putting to death. dispatched the sentry with one bullet execute stresses putting to death as a legal penalty. executed by lethal gas

Noun

haste, hurry, speed, expedition, dispatch mean quickness in movement or action. haste applies to personal action and implies urgency and precipitancy and often rashness. marry in haste hurry often has a strong suggestion of agitated bustle or confusion. in the hurry of departure she forgot her toothbrush speed suggests swift efficiency in movement or action. exercises to increase your reading speed expedition and dispatch both imply speed and efficiency in handling affairs but expedition stresses ease or efficiency of performance and dispatch stresses promptness in concluding matters. the case came to trial with expedition paid bills with dispatch

Examples of dispatch in a Sentence

Verb

Rescue workers were immediately dispatched to the area. The hotel dispatched a limo to pick us up from the airport. He dispatched the guard with one bullet.

Noun

The general sent a dispatch to headquarters. He requested the immediate dispatch of supplies. The reporter sent many dispatches from the war zone.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

And Trippier - who, realistically speaking, must be in contention for player of the tournament - stood up and dispatched beautifully. SI.com, "Croatia 2-1 England (AET): Three Lions' Hearts Broken as Mandzukic Scores Extra Time Winner," 11 July 2018 The Red Devils outlasted Loyola 8-5 in the state semifinals, then dispatched New Trier 13-3 on June 2 to claim the championship. Gregg Voss, chicagotribune.com, "Multi-sport athletes among reasons lacrosse is thriving in Chicago's west suburbs," 11 July 2018 The queen spent the next few weeks preparing for her homecoming, dispatching letters to various high-ranking officials to solicit their help in reclaiming her crown. Anne Thériault, Longreads, "Queens of Infamy: Joanna of Naples," 3 July 2018 Almost all the blue roof sheeting was dispatched, along with 90 percent of the water and the majority of the emergency meals. Arelis R. Hernandez And Joel Achenbach, chicagotribune.com, "Failure of imagination hindered federal response to hurricanes that devastated Puerto Rico," 14 July 2018 Managers too lazy to supervise or too cowardly to fire would dispatch to the copy desk anybody who had bungled every other assignment. John E. Mcintyre, baltimoresun.com, "We owe a debt to Hank Glamann," 13 July 2018 Historic England, another public body, has dispatched aerial reconnaissance teams from bases in York and Swindon to scour the country for Roman villas and prehistoric forts. The Economist, "Dry weather is helping archaeologists discover ancient sites," 12 July 2018 Billionaire Elon Musk dispatched a team of engineers, and President Donald Trump said Sunday the U.S. is working very closely with Thailand’s military government on the rescue. Dan Murtaugh, The Seattle Times, "U.S. firm helps Thais to pump water from cave to save boys," 9 July 2018 Officials dispatched planes and a cutter that searched more than 1,630 square miles. CBS News, "Cruise ship rescues crewmember "waving their arms" in ocean near Cuba," 2 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Police are asking for people with tips about the shooting to call non-emergency dispatch at 3-1-1. Alex Demarban, Anchorage Daily News, "Anchorage police seek public help finding shooting suspect," 6 July 2018 Anyone with information is asked to call police dispatch at 513-765-1212 or Crimestoppers at 513-352-3040. Sarah Brookbank, Cincinnati.com, "Police: Critical missing Hartwell woman made suicidal threats," 25 June 2018 Inexplicably, Grams then called dispatch for backup. Michael Mccann, SI.com, "Inside Sterling Brown’s compelling lawsuit against the Milwaukee Police Department and City of Milwaukee," 19 June 2018 According to police reports, dispatch received calls from Advocate Condell Medical Center about a patient with an outstanding warrant about to be medically released. Pioneer Press, chicagotribune.com, "Libertyville police: Lyft driver had concealed weapon without permit," 11 June 2018 The latest dispatch from Civil Defense says a lava flow crossed Highway 137 at the 13-mile marker and has entered the ocean. Chris Woodyard, USA TODAY, "Hawaii volcano poses a new threat: Acid from Kilauea's lava, called 'laze,' pouring into the ocean," 20 May 2018 Civil matter, Kersdale Road: A resident called dispatch around 4:40 p.m. on May 2 in regards to still not having his son during his scheduled parenting time. Thomas Jewell, cleveland.com, "Car partially submerges in wet cement: Pepper Pike Police Blotter," 11 May 2018 Anyone with information is asked to call the anonymous tip line at 1-800-452-7888 or by calling Oregon State Police dispatch at 541-776-6111. Travis Fedschun, Fox News, "Multiple deer shot with arrows through head, body; Oregon police searching for suspect," 29 Apr. 2018 Allegan County dispatch said that the cow has been returned to the ranch. Rose White, Detroit Free Press, "Loose cow runs wrong way down U.S.-131," 29 Jan. 2018

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

Verb

1517, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Noun

1537, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for dispatch

Verb

Spanish despachar or Italian dispacciare, from Occitan despachar to get rid of, from Middle French despechier to set free, from Old French, from des- dis- + -pechier (as in enpechier to ensnare) — more at impeach

Noun

see dispatch entry 1

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Statistics for dispatch

Last Updated

3 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for dispatch

The first known use of dispatch was in 1517

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More Definitions for dispatch

dispatch

verb

English Language Learners Definition of dispatch

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to send (someone or something) quickly to a particular place for a particular purpose

: to defeat (a person or team) in a game, contest, etc.

: to kill (a person or animal) quickly

dispatch

noun

English Language Learners Definition of dispatch (Entry 2 of 2)

: an important official message

: the act of sending someone or something to a particular place for a particular purpose

: a news story that a reporter sends to a newspaper usually from a foreign country

dispatch

verb
dis·​patch | \di-ˈspach \
dispatched; dispatching

Kids Definition of dispatch

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to send away quickly to a certain place or for a certain reason The general dispatched a messenger.

2 : to get done quickly She dispatched one job and moved to the next.

3 : kill entry 1 sense 1 dispatch a sick animal

Other Words from dispatch

dispatcher noun

dispatch

noun

Kids Definition of dispatch (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : message sense 1 Send a dispatch to headquarters.

2 : a news story sent in to a newspaper

3 : speed entry 1 sense 1 You must act with dispatch.

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