jettison

verb
jet·​ti·​son | \ ˈje-tə-sən How to pronounce jettison (audio) , -zən \
jettisoned; jettisoning; jettisons

Definition of jettison

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to get rid of as superfluous or encumbering : omit or forgo as part of a plan or as the result of some other decision must be prepared to jettison many romantic notions— Christopher Catling
2 : to drop (cargo) to lighten a ship's load in time of distress
3 : to drop from an aircraft or spacecraft in flight

jettison

noun

Definition of jettison (Entry 2 of 2)

: a voluntary sacrifice of cargo to lighten a ship's load in time of distress

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Other Words from jettison

Verb

jettisonable \ ˈje-​tə-​sə-​nə-​bəl How to pronounce jettisonable (audio) , -​zə-​ \ adjective

The Origin of Jettison

Noun

Jettison comes from the Anglo-French noun geteson, meaning "action of throwing," and is ultimately from the Latin verb jactare, meaning "to throw." The noun jettison ("a voluntary sacrifice of cargo to lighten a ship's load in time of distress") entered English in the 15th century; the verb has been with us since the 19th century. The noun is also the source of the word jetsam ("jettisoned goods"), which is often paired with flotsam ("floating wreckage"). These days you don't have to be on a sinking ship to jettison something. In addition to literally "throwing overboard," jettison means simply "to get rid of." You might jettison some old magazines that are cluttering your house, or you might make a plan but jettison it at the last minute.

Examples of jettison in a Sentence

Verb The captain gave orders to jettison the cargo. They jettisoned the fuel and made an emergency landing. We should jettison these old computers and get new ones. They jettisoned plans for a vacation. Noun with his ship rapidly sinking, the captain ordered a last-ditch jettison of much of its cargo
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb But keeping Gettleman while jettisoning the coach follows past form for the Giants, who have had just four general managers since 1979. Bill Pennington, New York Times, "The Giants Begin Another Rebuild, but Keep the Same Architect," 30 Dec. 2019 Returns are no longer accepted by Barneys and shoppers can’t redeem gift cards as the retailer looks to jettison remaining merchandise. Kim Bhasin, Fortune, "Barneys Liquidation Gives Luxury Shoppers a Rare Black Friday Treat: Deep Discounts," 26 Nov. 2019 According to Koenigsmann, the explosion occurred during a test of the Crew Dragon’s in-flight abort system, which is used to jettison the capsule from the rocket if something goes wrong during launch. Daniel Oberhaus, WIRED, "A Leaky Component Caused the SpaceX Crew Dragon Explosion," 15 July 2019 The Seahawks would also have to jettison other players to accommodate Beckham's $8.5 million salary for 2018. Geoffrey C. Arnold, OregonLive.com, "Should the Seattle Seahawks trade for Odell Beckham, Jr.?," 2 Apr. 2018 That set off an automated choreography — jettisoning pieces no longer needed, deploying parachutes, inflating the airbags — that appeared to unfold flawlessly. Kenneth Chang, New York Times, "Boeing Starliner Lands in New Mexico After Clock Error Prompts Early Return," 22 Dec. 2019 No more magic for the Super Bowl MVP, and this past offseason, the team jettisoned Foles in favor of incumbent (and now healthy) starter Carson Wentz. BostonGlobe.com, "Nearly two years later, as the Eagles and Patriots prepare for their rematch of Super Bowl LII Sunday afternoon in Philadelphia, the tables we thought had turned instead returned to their original places.," 13 Nov. 2019 Flipping around and jettisoning its forward heat shield, a series of small drogue and pilot chutes deployed, stabilizing the craft and pulling out two of three main parachutes. William Harwood, CBS News, "Boeing identifies rigging problem with Starliner parachute," 7 Nov. 2019 BUOYED BULLPEN Relief pitching was a major question mark entering the season, and five members of the bullpen who appeared in more than 20 games this year were either left off the postseason roster or jettisoned much earlier. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Swept out of playoffs, Twins still proud of 101-win season," 8 Oct. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun In her loose adaptation of The Witch of Edmonton, written by William Rowley, Thomas Dekker and John Ford, Silverman reworks subplots and jettisons period dialogue for contemporary vernacular. Jordan Riefe, The Hollywood Reporter, "'Witch': Theater Review," 30 Aug. 2019 In Rocket Lab’s design, its Electron rocket jettisons its payload and then begins to fall back toward Earth. Daniel Oberhaus, WIRED, "Catch Rockets With a Helicopter? Yep, That's the Plan," 15 Aug. 2019 When the jettison button is pushed, a Cartridge Activated Device drops the tank. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Squadron leaders warned of dangerous helicopter ‘hot seat’ hours before sailor fatally injured, report finds," 5 Aug. 2019 Powered by a single AAA battery, Quip jettisons much of the baggage of more complicated brushes, including the charging system, providing instead a streamlined (and quite attractive) wand with a vibrating, replaceable head. Christopher Null, WIRED, "Which Toothbrush Subscription Service Is the Best?," 6 June 2019 Although still based on the same Sound Core 3D chip as the AE-5 and AE-5 Pure, the AE-9 jettisons the on-chip digital analog converter, or DAC, in favor of an external DAC. Gordon Mah Ung, PCWorld, "Exclusive first look: Creative Labs' high-end Sound BlasterX AE-9 breaks cover," 8 Dec. 2018 The best thing the Lakers could do for themselves, and LeBron James, is jettison Lonzo Ball and his deadweight daddy, and go looking for a healthy, mature partner for James. Sally Jenkins, chicagotribune.com, "Welcome to L.A., LeBron James. See yourself out, LaVar Ball.," 2 July 2018 Bryant gets a fresh start with a brand new locker room, while the Steelers jettison a player who trashed a fellow wide receiver on Twitter in October and was reportedly seeking a trade in midseason. Robert Klemko, SI.com, "Draft Notes: For Lamar Jackson and the Ravens, the Wait Was Worth It," 27 Apr. 2018 During this process, sea lampreys jettison about 20 percent of their genome during embryonic development. Diana Gitig, Ars Technica, "Odd vertebrate gets rid of hundreds of genes early in development," 28 Jan. 2018

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

Verb

1848, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for jettison

Noun and Verb

Middle English jetteson, from Anglo-French geteson, literally, action of throwing, from Latin jactation-, jactatio, from jactare — more at jet

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Time Traveler for jettison

Time Traveler

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

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Last Updated

18 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Jettison.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/jettison. Accessed 22 January 2020.

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More Definitions for jettison

jettison

verb
How to pronounce jettison (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of jettison

: to drop (something) from a moving ship, airplane, etc.
: to get rid of (something) : to reject (something, such as a plan or idea)

jettison

verb
jet·​ti·​son | \ ˈje-tə-sən How to pronounce jettison (audio) \
jettisoned; jettisoning

Kids Definition of jettison

: to throw out especially from a ship or an airplane Cargo was jettisoned.

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More from Merriam-Webster on jettison

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for jettison

Spanish Central: Translation of jettison

Nglish: Translation of jettison for Spanish Speakers

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