ex·​pel | \ ik-ˈspel How to pronounce expel (audio) \
expelled; expelling

Definition of expel

transitive verb

1 : to force out : eject expelled the smoke from her lungs
2 : to force to leave (a place, an organization, etc.) by official action : take away rights or privileges of membership was expelled from college

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Other Words from expel

expellable \ ik-​ˈspe-​lə-​bəl How to pronounce expellable (audio) \ adjective

Choose the Right Synonym for expel

eject, expel, oust, evict mean to drive or force out. eject carries an especially strong implication of throwing or thrusting out from within as a physical action. ejected an obnoxious patron from the bar expel stresses a thrusting out or driving away especially permanently which need not be physical. a student expelled from college oust implies removal or dispossession by power of the law or by force or compulsion. police ousted the squatters evict chiefly applies to turning out of house and home. evicted for nonpayment of rent

Did You Know?

To expel is to drive out, and its usual noun is expulsion. Expel is similar to eject, but expel suggests pushing out while eject suggests throwing out. Also, ejecting may only be temporary: the player ejected from a game may be back tomorrow, but the student expelled from school is probably out forever.

Examples of expel in a Sentence

The club may expel members who do not follow the rules. She was expelled from school for bad behavior. expel air from the lungs
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Recent Examples on the Web District of Columbia Washington: In an unprecedented move, the D.C. Council wants to expel a member over ethics violations. USA TODAY, "Eel-powered tree, skateboard safety, red light on herring: News from around our 50 states," 5 Dec. 2019 Scott Nassar, the hotel’s managing director, initially attempted to expel a small group of reporters from the premises entirely. Chandler Rome, Houston Chronicle, "Astros owner Jim Crane won't address MLB investigation," 20 Nov. 2019 Fifteen centuries later, in 1654, New Amsterdam Governor Peter Stuyvesant tried to expel the 23 Jews fleeing persecution who had just landed in the colony. Pamela S. Nadell, Quartz, "A history of American antisemitism," 12 Nov. 2019 The Boulder fraternities under the IFC on the Hill banner — that’s about 2,100 young men — set their own rules through a governing board with the power to expel wrongdoing chapters, Stine said. Elizabeth Hernandez, The Denver Post, "15 years after pledge’s hazing death, relationship between CU and Boulder’s fraternities “nonexistent”," 8 Nov. 2019 Fifteen centuries later, in 1654, New Amsterdam Governor Peter Stuyvesant tried to expel the 23 Jews fleeing persecution who had just landed in the colony. Pamela S. Nadell, The Conversation, "Anti-Semitism in the US today is a variation on an old theme," 7 Nov. 2019 That could be a licence to expel gay pupils, for instance. The Economist, "Australia’s government wants to allow religious people to discriminate," 2 Nov. 2019 Arroyo would be only the second lawmaker to be expelled in more than a century. Dan Petrella, chicagotribune.com, "Lawmakers call for tougher ethics rules and begin process to remove state Rep. Luis Arroyo following bribery charge," 29 Oct. 2019 Opting for expected management is essentially letting nature run its course, giving your body the space to expel the fetal tissue on its own. Rachel Wells, Glamour, "What to Expect During a Miscarriage," 28 Oct. 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for expel

Middle English expellen, from Latin expellere, from ex- + pellere to drive — more at felt

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Time Traveler for expel

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for expel

Last Updated

12 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Expel.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/expel?pronunciation&lang=en_us&dir=e&file=expel001. Accessed 15 December 2019.

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More Definitions for expel


How to pronounce expel (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of expel

: to officially force (someone) to leave a place or organization
: to push or force (something) out


ex·​pel | \ ik-ˈspel How to pronounce expel (audio) \
expelled; expelling

Kids Definition of expel

1 : to force to leave He was expelled from school.
2 : to force out expel air from lungs

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More from Merriam-Webster on expel

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for expel

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with expel

Spanish Central: Translation of expel

Nglish: Translation of expel for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of expel for Arabic Speakers

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