marching orders

plural noun

Definition of marching orders

: authoritative orders or instructions especially to set out on or as if on a march

Examples of marching orders in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Back in the winter, when the COVID-19 vaccines were fresh and his immune system was unenlightened, Mike Ford knew his marching orders: Don’t gather in crowds, or socialize unmasked; do stay at home, and get the jab when asked. Katherine J. Wu, The Atlantic, 4 Nov. 2021 Koeman is suspended for Saturday's clash against Atletico Madrid in La Liga anyway, but could attend that fixture before receiving his marching orders while a replacement is installed over the upcoming international break. Tom Sanderson, Forbes, 30 Sep. 2021 His marching orders were always the same: Cut more. Mckay Coppins, The Atlantic, 14 Oct. 2021 And Senate Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden told the Times that his marching orders from Schumer are not to violate Biden’s pledge in crafting a carbon tax. Timothy Noah, The New Republic, 28 Sep. 2021 Last November, Trump installed MacGregor as a senior adviser to the secretary of defense, with marching orders to push military leaders to get all U.S. troops out of Afghanistan. Jonathan Karl, ABC News, 3 Sep. 2021 The verdict will no doubt be welcomed by Beijing and its Hong Kong loyalists, who have unquestioningly fallen in line with their new marching orders and repeat unwaveringly that the national-security law has greatly improved the city. Timothy Mclaughlin, The Atlantic, 27 July 2021 The journalist said nothing of Colonel Warren’s denying the existence of radiation victims — the ostensible marching orders of the investigative team. New York Times, 9 Aug. 2021 The mob got explicit marching orders from Trump and still more encouragement from the president's men. Jay Reeves, Star Tribune, 10 Jan. 2021

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

1714, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for marching orders

Time Traveler

The first known use of marching orders was in 1714

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Dictionary Entries Near marching orders

marching flank

marching orders


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Statistics for marching orders

Last Updated

14 Nov 2021

Cite this Entry

“Marching orders.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Dec. 2021.

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More Definitions for marching orders

marching orders


English Language Learners Definition of marching orders

: orders that tell you what to do
used to say that someone has been ordered to leave a place, job, etc.


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