ex·​pe·​di·​tion | \ˌek-spə-ˈdi-shən \

Definition of expedition 

1a : a journey or excursion undertaken for a specific purpose

b : the group of persons making such a journey

2 : efficient promptness : speed

3 : a sending or setting forth

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Other Words from expedition

expeditioner \ ˌek-​spə-​ˈdi-​sh(ə-​)nər \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for expedition

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 expedition in a Sentence

a scientific expedition to Antarctica an avid mountain climber, always on an expedition to some far-off corner of the world

Recent Examples on the Web

Figures show that 128 of the 333 minke whales caught during the 12-week expedition in the Southern Ocean were female. Bard Wilkinson, CNN, "Japanese hunters kill 120 pregnant minke whales," 30 May 2018 The Neues has, among other highlights, a gorgeous limestone and plaster bust of Nefertiti from 1340 B.C., taken during a 1912 German expedition. New York Times, "A $1,000 Day in Berlin for $100," 29 May 2018 The government research group found the dense coral bed during a 23-day expedition aboard its Okeanos vessel. Sarah Gibbens, National Geographic, "This 'Secret Garden' of Coral May Be 1,000 Years Old," 15 May 2018 Bouchet sent Fallon 4,300 specimens collected during a 2016 expedition to the Caribbean island of Martinique. Michael Stone, Discover Magazine, "The Animal Collective," 9 May 2018 The khaki boating pants in a size 33 came with a letter of authenticity from Kennedy’s former secretary and a photograph of the President wearing them during a boating expedition. Jean Palmieri | Wwd, latimes.com, "Abercrombie & Fitch to debut John F. Kennedy-inspired collection," 9 Apr. 2018 For a restful, refined stay before your Galápagos expedition, Casa Gangotena, a stunning converted mansion, is an unparalleled choice in the historic center of Quito, which was named the first Unesco World Heritage site in 1978. Alexandra Kirkman, Fortune, "Visit the Galapagos Like a Royal," 23 June 2018 Thoreau passed within 30 miles of East Grand Lake on two of his three expeditions to Maine. Porter Fox, New York Times, "On a Canoe Trip Along the U.S.-Canada Border, Solitude and Shooting Stars," 20 June 2018 After the Canadians wrapped up their annual Hollywood shopping expedition at the Los Angeles Screenings, Canada's CTV has bought seven rookie U.S. network dramas, including The Rookie and Magnum P.I., starring Jay Hernandez. Etan Vlessing, The Hollywood Reporter, "L.A. Screenings: CTV Picks Up 'The Rookie,' 'Magnum P.I.'," 31 May 2018

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

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

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Last Updated

11 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for expedition

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

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English Language Learners Definition of expedition

: a journey especially by a group of people for a specific purpose (such as to explore a distant place or to do research)

: a group of people who travel together to a distant place : a group of people who go on an expedition


ex·​pe·​di·​tion | \ˌek-spə-ˈdi-shən \

Kids Definition of expedition

1 : a journey for a particular purpose a scientific expedition

2 : a group of people traveling for exploration or adventure

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