office

noun
of·​fice | \ ˈä-fəs How to pronounce office (audio) , ˈȯ- \

Definition of office

1a : a special duty, charge, or position conferred by an exercise of governmental authority and for a public purpose : a position of authority to exercise a public function and to receive whatever emoluments may belong to it
b : a position of responsibility or some degree of executive authority
2 : a prescribed form or service of worship specifically, capitalized : divine office
3 : a religious or social ceremonial observance : rite
4a : something that one ought to do or must do : an assigned or assumed duty, task, or role
b : the proper or customary action of something : function
c : something done for another : service
5 : a place where a particular kind of business is transacted or a service is supplied: such as
a : a place in which the functions of a public officer are performed
b : the directing headquarters of an enterprise or organization
c : the place in which a professional person conducts business
6 offices plural, chiefly British : the apartments, attached buildings, or outhouses in which the activities attached to the service of a house are carried on
7a : a major administrative unit in some governments British Foreign Office
b : a subdivision of some government departments Patent Office

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Choose the Right Synonym for office

function, office, duty, province mean the acts or operations expected of a person or thing. function implies a definite end or purpose or a particular kind of work. the function of language is two-fold: to communicate emotion and to give information — Aldous Huxley office is typically applied to the function or service associated with a trade or profession or a special relationship to others. they exercise the offices of the judge, the priest, the counsellor — W. E. Gladstone duty applies to a task or responsibility imposed by one's occupation, rank, status, or calling. it is the judicial duty of the court, to examine the whole case — R. B. Taney province applies to a function, office, or duty that naturally or logically falls to one. I felt it was not my province to inquire — Anne Brontë

Examples of office in a Sentence

She works at our Chicago office. Are you going to the office today? The supervisor held an informal meeting in his office. Her office is on the top floor near the elevator. He misbehaved in class and was sent to the principal's office. We use the extra bedroom in our house as an office. We stopped by the lawyer's office to pick up some documents. He has been in office for a decade. He was voted out of office. He won the election and will take office at the beginning of the year.
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Recent Examples on the Web Becky Quinn, the district’s director of curriculum, nominated Hunt for the award on behalf of the district’s central office directors. Ed Wittenberg, cleveland, "Chagrin Falls Schools’ Robert Hunt named Ohio Superintendent of the Year," 22 Oct. 2020 The state attorney general's office has two weeks to ask the Supreme Court for another hearing. Matt Sledge, NOLA.com, "Louisiana to stop issuing sex offender ID cards if court ruling stands," 22 Oct. 2020 But McElfresh said the city treasurer’s office, which handles collection of the tax, has been friendly and helpful with cannabis businesses during the early years of the tax, which was approved by city voters in November 2016. David Garrick, San Diego Union-Tribune, "San Diego files first lawsuit seeking unpaid cannabis taxes," 22 Oct. 2020 And Joe Biden, with almost a half-century in high public office, is simply part of the problem. WSJ, "Readers Consider McRaven’s View of Biden," 22 Oct. 2020 Also this summer, Cards Against Humanity became embroiled in controversy over its reportedly toxic office culture, and its founder Max Temkin stepped down. Kate Knibbs, Wired, "ClickHole Started as a Meat Joke. Can It Avoid Being Offal?," 22 Oct. 2020 Administration lawyers and officials in the White House budget office began to assess the plan and are still doing so. Margot Sanger-katz And Noah Weiland New York Times, Star Tribune, "Trump promised senior drug discount cards, but they may be illegal," 22 Oct. 2020 For people with chronic diseases, avoiding the doctor's office out of fear of contracting Covid-19 could be fatal. Eliza Mackintosh, CNN, "What you need to know about coronavirus on Thursday, October 22," 22 Oct. 2020 The 20 hours a week Perla Ortiz worked in the St. Edward’s University admissions office last year was the glue that kept her academic life together. Matt Krupnick, Washington Post, "Students who counted on work-study jobs now struggle to pay their bills," 22 Oct. 2020

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

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for office

Middle English, "position of authority, duties of a position, proper function, ecclesiastical service, space used for business or domestic functions," borrowed from Anglo-French, borrowed from Latin officium "beneficial act in fulfillment of an obligation, duty, functions in a position, post" (Late Latin, "ecclesiastical service"), contraction of opificium (attested in sense "constructive work"), from opi- (base of opis, *ops "power, ability" and oper-, opus "work, effort") + facere "to make, do, bring about" + -ium, deverbal suffix of function or state — more at opus, do entry 1

Note: Though officium is formally a contraction of opificium, their senses diverge, the latter noun maintaining a transparent relation to the agent noun opifex "craftsman, artificer."

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Learn More about office

Time Traveler for office

Time Traveler

The first known use of office was in the 13th century

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Statistics for office

Last Updated

25 Oct 2020

Cite this Entry

“Office.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/office. Accessed 28 Oct. 2020.

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More Definitions for office

office

noun
How to pronounce office (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of office

: a building or room in which people work at desks doing business or professional activities
: a room with a desk where a particular person works
chiefly US : a building or room where a doctor, lawyer, etc., works and meets with patients or clients

office

noun
of·​fice | \ ˈȯ-fəs How to pronounce office (audio) \

Kids Definition of office

1 : a place where business is done or a service is supplied a doctor's office
2 : a special duty or position and especially one of authority in government My uncle wants to run for office.

office

noun
of·​fice

Legal Definition of office

1 : a special duty, charge, or position conferred by governmental authority and for a public purpose qualified to hold public office broadly : a special duty or position of authority hold an office of trust
2 : a place where business or administration is conducted or services are performed
3 : a special administrative department or unit office of the district attorney

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Comments on office

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