dispensation

noun

dis·​pen·​sa·​tion ˌdi-spən-ˈsā-shən How to pronounce dispensation (audio)
-ˌspen-
1
a
: a general state or ordering of things
specifically : a system of revealed (see reveal entry 1 sense 1) commands and promises regulating human affairs
a privilege maintained under the new dispensation
b
: a particular arrangement or provision especially of providence or nature
involving special dispensation by the Church
2
a
: an exemption from a law or from an impediment, vow, or oath
may be granted a dispensation from the rule
b
: a formal authorization
requested a dispensation to form another lodge
3
a
: the act of dispensing
the dispensation of medication
b
: something dispensed or distributed
… one of the most remarkable cultural dispensations in the country's history, the paperback book.T. E. Cooney
dispensational
ˌdi-spən-ˈsā-shnəl How to pronounce dispensation (audio)
-ˌspen-
-shə-nᵊl
adjective

Examples of dispensation in a Sentence

The priest asked for dispensation from his vows. The state gave the town a special dispensation, allowing it to ignore the law in this case.
Recent Examples on the Web Since 2020, its monthly dispensation numbers for January have steadily increased by about 10,000 ounces each year. Lina Ruiz, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, 9 Feb. 2024 The Israeli right hopes not just for victory in Gaza, but also conquest But any postwar dispensation will have to reckon with the ground realities in Israel and the occupied territories. Ishaan Tharoor, Washington Post, 29 Nov. 2023 During the Queen's Platinum Jubilee, Tim was granted a rare dispensation to remain on the Buckingham Palace balcony despite a decision to only host working royals (and, in the case of the Cambridges and the Wessexes, their children) on the balcony during Trooping the Colour. Lauren Hubbard, Town & Country, 19 Sep. 2022 Nor is policy: State pharmacy laws already allow physicians to write a prescription for a single dispensation of up to a 12-month supply of a maintenance medication if the patient is paying cash. Stephen Buck, STAT, 21 Nov. 2023 Dozens of foreign players left the country after being given dispensation by FIFA to break their contracts. Rory Smith, New York Times, 7 July 2023 The incapacitation of the militant group will be bloody, but Hamas’s removal could provide a fleeting opportunity to bring about a new dispensation in Gaza that is better than what came before it. Steven Simon, Foreign Affairs, 18 Oct. 2023 In this instance, it was decided that the burden on families of not knowing the definitive truth about a loved one’s fate could constitute a threat to life — a dispensation not employed en masse for nearly 30 years. Laura King, Los Angeles Times, 17 Oct. 2023 Here, where perhaps someday a memorial will stand, the old dispensation died. Roger Cohen Avishag Shaar-Yashuv, New York Times, 15 Oct. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'dispensation.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

see dispense

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of dispensation was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near dispensation

Cite this Entry

“Dispensation.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dispensation. Accessed 21 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition

dispensation

noun
dis·​pen·​sa·​tion ˌdis-pən-ˈsā-shən How to pronounce dispensation (audio)
-ˌpen-
1
a
: a system of rules for ordering affairs
b
: a particular arrangement especially of nature
2
: release from a rule or from a vow or oath
3
a
: the act of dispensing
b
: something dispensed or distributed
dispensational
-shnəl How to pronounce dispensation (audio)
-shən-ᵊl
adjective

Medical Definition

dispensation

noun
dis·​pen·​sa·​tion ˌdis-pən-ˈsā-shən, -ˌpen- How to pronounce dispensation (audio)
: the act of dispensing
the dispensation of medicines

More from Merriam-Webster on dispensation

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