emissary

noun
em·​is·​sary | \ ˈe-mə-ˌser-ē How to pronounce emissary (audio) , -ˌse-rē \
plural emissaries

Definition of emissary

1 : one designated as the agent of another : representative
2 : a secret agent

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Did You Know?

Like missionaries, emissaries are sent on missions. However, emissaries are more likely to be representing governments, political leaders, and nonreligious institutions, and an emissary's mission is usually to negotiate or to gather information. So a president may send a trusted emissary to a war-torn region to discuss peace terms. A company's CEO may send an emissary to check out another company that they may be thinking of buying. And a politician may send out an emissary to persuade a wealthy individual to become a supporter.

Examples of emissary in a Sentence

She acted as the president's personal emissary to the union leaders. most of the industrialized nations of the world sent emissaries to the conference on global warming
Recent Examples on the Web The State Department already had a special envoy to the region, and President Trump’s new emissary, Richard Grenell, was also ambassador to Germany, where his brash style and embrace of right-wing figures broke with diplomatic norms. Patrick Kingsleyand Kenneth P. Vogel, BostonGlobe.com, "Pushing for Serbia-Kosovo peace deal, US roils allies," 20 June 2020 Adrienne Grunwald for The New York Times When New York went into lockdown last month, emissaries of a religious group called Happy Science showed up in a ghostly Times Square to deliver a peculiar end-of-days gospel. Sam Kestenbaum, New York Times, "Inside the Fringe Japanese Religion That Claims It Can Cure Covid-19," 16 Apr. 2020 Calderón denies the allegation and denies holding secret talks with emissaries of Maduro’s inner circle. Washington Post, "Juan Guaidó promised to save Venezuela. Now the flame he lit is petering out, and his U.S. backers are weighing their options.," 17 Dec. 2019 But the stream appears old enough that dead members could plausibly be sending out carbon-rich emissaries. Charlie Wood, Popular Science, "Our newest alien comet may have been born out of a dying star’s vomit," 3 Jan. 2020 The Rojos leader, Santiago Mazari Hernández, known on the street as El Carrete, sent an emissary to recruit the sicario. Paulina Villegas, New York Times, "He Was One of Mexico’s Deadliest Assassins. Then He Turned on His Cartel.," 14 Dec. 2019 Before he was even sworn in, President Andrés Manuel López Obrador sent emissaries to Canada to discuss its approach to cannabis. BostonGlobe.com, "You're using a browser set to private or incognito mode.," 18 Oct. 2019 Before he was even sworn in, President Andrés Manuel López Obrador sent emissaries to Canada to discuss its approach to cannabis. Gene Johnson, chicagotribune.com, "How Canada’s legalization is shaping cannabis laws elsewhere," 18 Oct. 2019 Before he was even sworn in, President Andrés Manuel López Obrador sent emissaries to Canada to discuss its approach to cannabis. Washington Post, "How Canada’s legalization is shaping cannabis laws elsewhere," 16 Oct. 2019

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

1607, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for emissary

Latin emissarius, from emissus, past participle of emittere

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Time Traveler for emissary

Time Traveler

The first known use of emissary was in 1607

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Last Updated

27 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Emissary.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/emissary. Accessed 2 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for emissary

emissary

noun
How to pronounce emissary (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of emissary

: a person who is sent on a mission to represent another person or organization

emissary

noun
em·​is·​sary | \ ˈe-mə-ˌser-ē How to pronounce emissary (audio) \
plural emissaries

Kids Definition of emissary

: a person sent on a mission to represent someone else

emissary

noun
em·​is·​sary | \ ˈe-mə-ˌser-ē How to pronounce emissary (audio) \
plural emissaries

Legal Definition of emissary

: a representative usually empowered to act more or less independently (as in collecting or conveying information or in negotiating)

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