mis·​di·​rect ˌmis-də-ˈrekt How to pronounce misdirect (audio)
misdirected; misdirecting; misdirects

transitive verb

: to give a wrong direction to
: to direct wrongly
misdirected their energies

Example Sentences

Their mail was misdirected to our address. If he tells you he's not interested, he's trying to misdirect you.
Recent Examples on the Web Allied powers during World War II used decoy equipment and fake signals intelligence to try to misdirect German forces ahead of the Allied invasion of Normandy. John Hudson, Washington Post, 30 Aug. 2022 The negative perspective is that buybacks misdirect money that companies should be investing. Simon Moore, Forbes, 8 Aug. 2022 The brunt of viral replication might be over, leaving the immune frenzy to misdirect much of its havoc onto our own tissues instead. Katherine J. Wu, The Atlantic, 4 Aug. 2022 While the Avengers angle is undoubtedly meant to misdirect fans, the new Doctor Strange 2 trailer does include a few exciting details. Chris Smith, BGR, 4 Apr. 2022 Annual climate results have the potential to slightly misdirect non-scientists. Eric Roston/bloomberg, Time, 10 Jan. 2022 Magritte’s world is a hall of mirrors, but even his mirrors misdirect. Washington Post, 2 Dec. 2021 But slight changes in percentages can misdirect from the absolute numbers, which are important. Erik Sherman, Forbes, 8 Oct. 2021 The author's skillful ability to misdirect the reader to the point that everyone appears guilty is impressive. Mary Cadden, USA TODAY, 18 Aug. 2021 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'misdirect.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

First Known Use

1603, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of misdirect was in 1603

Dictionary Entries Near misdirect

Cite this Entry

“Misdirect.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/misdirect. Accessed 5 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition



mis·​di·​rect ˌmis-də-ˈrekt How to pronounce misdirect (audio)
: to direct incorrectly

More from Merriam-Webster on misdirect

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