expressed; expressing; expresses

Definition of express

 (Entry 1 of 4)

transitive verb

1a : to represent in words : state
b : to make known the opinions or feelings of (oneself)
c : to give expression to the artistic or creative impulses or abilities of (oneself)
d : to give or convey a true impression of : show, reflect
e : to represent by a sign or symbol : symbolize
2 : to send by express
3a : to force out (something, such as the juice of a fruit) by pressure
b : to subject to pressure so as to extract something
4 : to cause (a gene) to manifest its effects in the phenotype also : to manifest or produce (a character, molecule, or effect) by a genetic process


ex·​press | \ ik-ˈspres How to pronounce express (audio) \

Definition of express (Entry 2 of 4)

1a : directly, firmly, and explicitly stated my express orders
2a : of a particular sort : specific for that express purpose
b : designed for or adapted to its purpose
3a : traveling at high speed specifically : traveling with few or no stops along the way express train
b : designed or intended to be used for fast movement or travel an express highway with few local exits the express lane at the supermarket
c(1) : delivered faster than usual an express shipment
(2) British : designated to be delivered without delay by special messenger



Definition of express (Entry 3 of 4)

1a(1) : a system for the prompt and safe transportation of parcels, money, or goods at rates higher than standard freight charges
(2) : a company operating such a merchandise freight service
b British : a messenger sent on a special errand
c British : a dispatch conveyed by a special messenger
d British : special delivery
2 : an express vehicle



Definition of express (Entry 4 of 4)

1 : by express delivered express
2 obsolete : expressly

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Other Words from express


expresser noun
expressible \ ik-​ˈspre-​sə-​bəl How to pronounce expressible (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for express

Synonyms: Verb

Synonyms: Adjective

Synonyms: Noun

Antonyms: Verb

Antonyms: Adjective

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Choose the Right Synonym for express


express, vent, utter, voice, broach, air mean to make known what one thinks or feels. express suggests an impulse to reveal in words, gestures, actions, or what one creates or produces. expressed her feelings in music vent stresses a strong inner compulsion to express especially in words. a tirade venting his frustration utter implies the use of the voice not necessarily in articulate speech. utter a groan voice does not necessarily imply vocal utterance but does imply expression or formulation in words. an editorial voicing their concerns broach adds the implication of disclosing for the first time something long thought over or reserved for a suitable occasion. broached the subject of a divorce air implies an exposing or parading of one's views often in order to gain relief or sympathy or attention. publicly airing their differences


explicit, definite, express, specific mean perfectly clear in meaning. explicit implies such verbal plainness and distinctness that there is no need for inference and no room for difficulty in understanding. explicit instructions definite stresses precise, clear statement or arrangement that leaves no doubt or indecision. the law is definite in such cases express implies both explicitness and direct and positive utterance. her express wishes specific applies to what is precisely and fully treated in detail or particular. two specific criticisms

Examples of express in a Sentence

Verb He expressed an interest in meeting her. She expressed surprise at his rude behavior. The results can be expressed as a percentage. The length, expressed in centimeters, is 29. They expressed the package to us. Adjective the express lane at the grocery store a trip to the supermarket with the express purpose of buying milk Noun He sent the package to us by express. He takes the express to work. Adverb They sent the package express.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Some legal analysts expressed skepticism about Trump's sincerity but said his testimony would no doubt be welcomed by impeachment investigators. David Jackson, USA TODAY, "Donald Trump says he would 'consider' providing impeachment testimony," 18 Nov. 2019 Many in the sports world, including former Alabama players, expressed regret for Tagovailoa’s injury. Creg Stephenson |, al, "Former players, media members react to Tua Tagovailoa’s injury," 16 Nov. 2019 Many commenters on the post, which is public, expressed sadness over the closing. Evan Casey, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Miller Pharmacy in Mukwonago closes suddenly," 15 Nov. 2019 In 2012, Elizabeth II expressed her acceptance of her new daughter-in-law by officially giving her a royal honor. Morgan Evans, Good Housekeeping, "A Timeline of Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles' Royal Romance," 15 Nov. 2019 New York City mayor Bill DiBlasio and Democratic representative Al Green expressed doubts as well. Wired, "‘Epstein Didn’t Kill Himself' and the Meme-ing of Conspiracy," 15 Nov. 2019 Macho camaraderie, sometimes expressed in fighting, is essential to the mix. Kyle Smith, National Review, "The Manly Appeal of Ford v Ferrari," 13 Nov. 2019 Numerous other residents and neighbors expressed concern on Facebook about their safety and the safety of their livestock, which the company assured the DeWitt County Office of Emergency Management would be taken care of. Sergio Chapa, Houston Chronicle, "Devon Energy one step away from capping blowout in DeWitt County," 12 Nov. 2019 The brothers expressed gratitude for being on speaking terms again and promised to perform the album in its entirety for the tour launching on June 17, 2020, in Austin. Taylor Mims, Billboard, "Black Crowes Sign With CAA Ahead of Reunion Tour," 12 Nov. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The initial express toll lanes, which opened in 2014, were designed to relieve traffic congestion on I-95. Aegis Staff Report,, "Old Joppa Road overpass closed as part of I-95 express toll lane expansion into Harford County," 11 Oct. 2019 Friday: On each side of the highway, all three lanes will be open, with tolling resuming in the express lanes. Jon Murray, The Denver Post, "U.S. 36: CDOT delays reopening of eastbound lanes due to weather," 1 Oct. 2019 All traffic was diverted to the express lanes, No one was injured in the crash. Chicago Tribune Staff,, "Dan Ryan outbound lanes closed after early Friday crash near 26th Street, may not reopen until midafternoon," 20 Sep. 2019 Food and libations will be favorites from Hofbrauhaus including (in the express lane) pretzels, bratwurst, non-alcoholic beverages, hot dogs, desserts including apple strudel and pretzel bread pudding. Sam Boyer,, "Community park gets a facelift: Whit & Whimsey," 6 Sep. 2019 Through the first quarter of play both teams used the perimeter as an express lane to the opponents' area. Glynn A. Hill, Houston Chronicle, "Dash settle for draw with Orlando Pride," 15 June 2019 Here's a pro tip: The tall boys sign — for 16-ounce cans of Riverwest Stein or IPA — is the express lane. Kathy Flanigan, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Lakefront Brewery taps a specialty beer every day at Summerfest. Here's what's coming.," 18 Dec. 2018 Similar to the eastbound express lane, the Colorado Department of Transportation will set varying toll rates aimed at keeping traffic moving in that lane at times of high traffic, especially in the winter and summer. Jon Murray, The Denver Post, "Colorado kicks off new I-70 express lane project in the mountains," 11 July 2019 The existing carpool lane in both directions will be converted to an express lane. Daily Pilot, "Demolition of Bushard Street bridge over 405 Freeway to begin this weekend," 12 Sep. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Her opinion also implies that only an express House vote announcing the beginning of an impeachment inquiry would permit the body to issue subpoenas in service of impeachment. S.m. | New York, The Economist, "Why the battle over Donald Trump’s financial records will drag on," 14 Oct. 2019 And Wayne Gallman’s hall of fame express will come to a screeching halt when the new Giants star faces the Vikings. Kevin Cusick, Twin Cities, "The Loop Fantasy Football Update Week 5: Last-minute moves," 6 Oct. 2019 The next opponent on Baylor’s cupcake express is Rice, fresh off a 48–13 drubbing at the hands of Texas. The Si Staff,, "Top Week 4 College Football Bets for Each Power 5 Conference," 20 Sep. 2019 Phillip Leung, a 21-year-old Dublin resident, takes BART and a VTA express bus to get to his externship at the U.S. Patent Office in San Jose. Erin Baldassari, The Mercury News, "VTA bus, light-rail service to continue Monday as union goes radio silent," 23 June 2019 About 55 miles of express lanes have opened on interstates 495, 95 and 66 in the past seven years, and the state envisions more than 90 miles of HOT lanes in Northern Virginia by 2022. Washington Post, "395 Express Lanes on track to open in November," 14 Sep. 2019 Offer thanks, express optimism, maybe crack a joke. Michael Paulson, New York Times, "Is Broadway Ready for ‘Slave Play’?," 11 Sep. 2019 The highway project will add one express lane in each direction, resurface the roadway and add an auxiliary lane along northbound I-25 to help drivers more easily merge. Sam Tabachnik, The Denver Post, "Weekend roadwork to snarl traffic on I-25," 22 Aug. 2019 The northbound express lanes were closed following the crash until about 2 p.m., police said. Eliza Fawcett,, "Van driver sought by police after woman killed in crash on Dan Ryan," 24 June 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb All express pleasant shock at their changed Sundays. Paul Daugherty,, "Doc: Would you miss the NFL and the Cincinnati Bengals if they were gone?," 5 Feb. 2018 EXPRESS-BUS SOLUTION Why the Metro Gold Line is not the solution to traffic congestion in St. Paul: Congestion is primarily during rush hour and thus the solution must address commuters during typical business hours. Letter Writers, Twin Cities, "Letter: Gold Line won’t solve congestion in St. Paul," 15 June 2017

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


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


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


1619, in the meaning defined at sense 1b


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for express


Middle English, from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French espresser, from expres, adjective


Middle English, from Anglo-French expres, from Latin expressus, past participle of exprimere to press out, express, from ex- + premere to press — more at press

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Time Traveler for express

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for express

Last Updated

21 Nov 2019

Cite this Entry

“Express.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 21 November 2019.

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More Definitions for express



English Language Learners Definition of express

 (Entry 1 of 4)

: to talk or write about (something that you are thinking or feeling)
: to make (your thoughts and feelings) known by doing something other than talking or writing
: to show (an amount, quantity, etc.) by a sign or a symbol


How to pronounce express (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of express (Entry 2 of 4)

: said or given in a clear way
: of a particular kind
: traveling at high speed with few stops



English Language Learners Definition of express (Entry 3 of 4)

: a system for delivering things (such as letters and packages) quickly
: a train or bus that travels quickly with few stops



English Language Learners Definition of express (Entry 4 of 4)

: by a system that delivers letters and packages quickly : by express


ex·​press | \ ik-ˈspres How to pronounce express (audio) \
expressed; expressing

Kids Definition of express

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : to make known especially in words I expressed my surprise.
2 : to represent by a sign or symbol The amount was expressed as a percentage.
3 : to send by a quick method of delivery



Kids Definition of express (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : clearly stated an express order
2 : of a certain sort I came for an express purpose.
3 : sent or traveling at high speed express mail



Kids Definition of express (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : a system for the quick transportation of goods Send your package by express.
2 : a vehicle (as a train or elevator) run at special speed with few or no stops
ex·​press | \ ik-ˈspres, ek- How to pronounce express (audio) \

Medical Definition of express

1 : to make known or exhibit by an expression
2a : to force out by pressure express breast milk manually or by electric pump
b : to subject to pressure so as to extract something some pumps express one breast at a time— Paula Lynn Parks
3 : to cause (a gene) to manifest its effects in the phenotype a gene selectively expressed in lung tumors also : to manifest or produce (a character, molecule, or effect) by a genetic process individuals with the gene express symptoms of the disease differentially expressed proteins

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Legal Definition of express

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: directly and distinctly stated or expressed rather than implied or left to inference — compare implied

Legal Definition of express (Entry 2 of 2)

: to make known (one's thoughts, ideas, or opinions) by words, conduct, or symbols — see also expression

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More from Merriam-Webster on express

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for express

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with express

Spanish Central: Translation of express

Nglish: Translation of express for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of express for Arabic Speakers

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