execute

verb
ex·​e·​cute | \ ˈek-si-ˌkyüt How to pronounce execute (audio) \
executed; executing

Definition of execute

transitive verb

1 : to carry out fully : put completely into effect execute a command
2 : to do what is provided or required by execute a decree
3 : to put to death especially in compliance with a legal sentence
4 : to make or produce (something, such as a work of art) especially by carrying out a design
5 : to perform what is required to give validity to execute a deed
6 : play execute a piece of music

intransitive verb

1 : to perform properly or skillfully the fundamentals of a sport or of a particular play never had a team execute better— Bobby Knight
2 : to perform indicated tasks according to encoded instructions used of a computer program or routine

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Other Words from execute

executable \ ˈek-​si-​ˌkyü-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce executable (audio) \ adjective

Choose the Right Synonym for execute

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

perform, execute, discharge, accomplish, achieve, effect, fulfill mean to carry out or into effect. perform implies action that follows established patterns or procedures or fulfills agreed-upon requirements and often connotes special skill. performed gymnastics execute stresses the carrying out of what exists in plan or in intent. executed the hit-and-run discharge implies execution and completion of appointed duties or tasks. discharged his duties accomplish stresses the successful completion of a process rather than the means of carrying it out. accomplished everything they set out to do achieve adds to accomplish the implication of conquered difficulties. achieve greatness effect adds to achieve an emphasis on the inherent force in the agent capable of surmounting obstacles. effected sweeping reforms fulfill implies a complete realization of ends or possibilities. fulfilled their ambitions

Examples of execute in a Sentence

He was captured, tried, and executed for murder. They carefully executed the plan. The pilot executed an emergency landing. The quarterback executed the play perfectly. execute the provisions of the will
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Recent Examples on the Web

Currently, no air force has the ability to execute a drone swarm attack. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "The U.K. Promises to Develop Drone Swarms, But on an Unrealistic Timetable," 12 Feb. 2019 Curbing car use, making cities more walkable, and perfecting public transit are common goals for many cities, but exactly how to execute on these ideals isn’t a given. Diana Budds, Curbed, "The future of urban mobility will be shaped by these six issues," 18 Dec. 2018 But the more recent Schiaparelli incident does highlight how every piece of the landing puzzle must be executed as planned — without any help from those on Earth. Loren Grush, The Verge, "NASA’s InSight lander has just six and a half minutes to land on Mars in one piece," 21 Nov. 2018 But faced with a forecast of more rain this week, experts warned that if a rescue mission were not executed quickly, the boys and their coach could be stranded in the cave for months more. Rebecca Tan, Washington Post, "‘Hooyah, Hooyah, Hooyah’: Jubilation at Thai cave rescue spreads across the world," 10 July 2018 Palmer District Attorney Roman Kalytiak responded that Almandinger provided another teen with the heavy gun used to beat Grunwald before he was killed, gave directions to the place he was executed and helped cover up the crime. Zaz Hollander, Anchorage Daily News, "Defense rests in Grunwald murder trial without calling any witnesses," 30 May 2018 The family’s anxiety has grown in the wake of recent reports that Layla Shweikani, a 26-year-old Illinois native, had been executed by the Syrian government in December 2016, 10 months after she was picked up for her pro-democracy work in Syria. Dion Nissenbaum, WSJ, "Seeking Help, Family Breaks Silence on American Missing in Syria," 20 Jan. 2019 In the episode's final moments, Jamie receives an order from Governor Tryon to find and execute his beloved godfather, Murtagh, for his involvement with the rebellious Regulators. Julie Kosin, Harper's BAZAAR, "Sam Heughan on What the Outlander Finale Means for Season 5: "It's Going to Be Tough"," 28 Jan. 2019 From going out into the field and canvassing, to phone banking, to creating and executing meet and greets with the candidate, to data entry, to the unglamorous—cleaning the campaign office, creating yard signs. Amanda Mitchell, Marie Claire, "How To Volunteer For A Political Campaign and Change The World," 25 Jan. 2019

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

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

History and Etymology for execute

Middle English, from Anglo-French executer, from execucion execution

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Statistics for execute

Last Updated

22 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for execute

The first known use of execute was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for execute

execute

verb

English Language Learners Definition of execute

: to kill (someone) especially as punishment for a crime
: to do (something that you have planned to do or been told to do)
: to do or perform (an action or movement that requires skill)

execute

verb
ex·​e·​cute | \ ˈek-sə-ˌkyüt How to pronounce execute (audio) \
executed; executing

Kids Definition of execute

1 : to kill according to a legal order
2 : to put into effect : perform or carry out execute a plan
3 : to make according to a design The painting was executed in bright colors.

execute

transitive verb
ex·​e·​cute | \ ˈek-si-ˌkyüt How to pronounce execute (audio) \
executed; executing

Legal Definition of execute

1 : perform: as
a : to carry out fully includes not only executed violence, but also threatened violenceLouisiana Civil Code
b : to do what is provided or required by execute a contract execute a search warrant
c : to deem (a use in property) to confer full seisin in a cestui que use by operation of the Statute of Uses
2 : to perform what is required to give validity to especially : to complete (as by signing and delivering) in proper form execute a note execute a deed
3 : to put to death in compliance with a judicial death sentence

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More from Merriam-Webster on execute

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for execute

Spanish Central: Translation of execute

Nglish: Translation of execute for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of execute for Arabic Speakers

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