peremptory

play
adjective pe·remp·to·ry \ pə-ˈrem(p)-t(ə-)rē \

Definition of peremptory

1 a :putting an end to or precluding a right of action, debate, or delay; specifically :not providing an opportunity to show cause why one should not comply
  • a peremptory mandamus
b :admitting of no contradiction
2 :expressive of urgency or command
  • a peremptory call
3 a :characterized by often imperious or arrogant self-assurance
  • how insolent of late he is become, how proud, how peremptory
  • —William Shakespeare
b :indicative of a peremptory attitude or nature :haughty
  • a peremptory tone
  • peremptory disregard of an objection

peremptorily

play \pə-ˈrem(p)-t(ə-)rə-lē; -ˌrem(p)-ˈtȯr-ə-lē\ adverb

peremptoriness

play \pə-ˈrem(p)-t(ə-)rē-nəs\ noun

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Examples of peremptory in a Sentence

  1. Her peremptory tone angered me.

  2. the governor's peremptory personal assistant began telling the crowd of reporters and photographers exactly where they had to stand

Recent Examples of peremptory from the Web

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

Did You Know?

Peremptory is ultimately from Latin perimere, which means "to take entirely" or "destroy" and comes from per- ("thoroughly") and emere ("to take"). Peremptory implies the removal of one's option to disagree or contest something. It sometimes suggests an abrupt dictatorial manner combined with an unwillingness to tolerate disobedience or dissent (as in "he was given a peremptory dismissal"). A related term is the adjective preemptive, which comes from Latin praeemere-from prae- ("before") plus emere. Preemptive means "marked by the seizing of the initiative" (as in "a preemptive attack").

Origin and Etymology of peremptory

Middle English peremptorie, from Anglo-French, from Late Latin & Latin; Late Latin peremptorius, from Latin, destructive, from perimere to take entirely, destroy, from per- thoroughly + emere to take — more at redeem

Synonym Discussion of peremptory

masterful, domineering, imperious, peremptory, imperative mean tending to impose one's will on others. masterful implies a strong personality and ability to act authoritatively.
    • her masterful personality soon dominated the movement
domineering suggests an overbearing or arbitrary manner and an obstinate determination to enforce one's will.
    • children controlled by domineering parents
imperious implies a commanding nature or manner and often suggests arrogant assurance.
    • an imperious executive used to getting his own way
peremptory implies an abrupt dictatorial manner coupled with an unwillingness to brook disobedience or dissent.
    • given a peremptory dismissal
imperative implies peremptoriness arising more from the urgency of the situation than from an inherent will to dominate.
    • an imperative appeal for assistance

PEREMPTORY Defined for English Language Learners

peremptory

play
adjective

Definition of peremptory for English Language Learners

  • —used to describe an order, command, etc., that you must obey without any questions or excuses

  • : having or showing the insulting attitude of people who think that they should be obeyed without question


Law Dictionary

1

peremptory

play
adjective pe·remp·to·ry \ pə-ˈremp-tə-rē \

legal Definition of peremptory

1 :permitting no dispute, alternative, or delay; specifically :not providing an opportunity to show cause why one should not comply
  • when the right to require the performance of the act is clear and it is apparent that no valid excuse can be given for not performing it, a peremptory mandamus may be allowed
  • Revised Statutes of Nebraska
2 :not requiring cause — see also peremptory challenge at challenge

peremptorily

play \pə-ˈremp-tə-rə-lē, -ˌremp-ˈtōr-ə-lē\ adverb

peremptoriness

play \-ˈremp-tə-rē-nəs\ noun

Origin and Etymology of peremptory

Late Latin peremptorius, from Latin, destructive, from perimere to take entirely, destroy


2

peremptory

noun

legal Definition of peremptory

plural peremptories
:peremptory challenge at challenge


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