task

noun
\ ˈtask How to pronounce task (audio) \

Definition of task

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a usually assigned piece of work often to be finished within a certain time
b : something hard or unpleasant that has to be done
c : duty, function
2 : subjection to adverse criticism : reprimand used in the expressions to take, call, or bring to task

task

verb
tasked; tasking; tasks

Definition of task (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to assign a task to employees tasked with updating the files
2 : to oppress with great labor tasks his mind with petty details
3 obsolete : to impose a tax on

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Synonyms for task

Synonyms: Noun

assignment, chore, duty, job

Synonyms: Verb

assign, charge, commission, entrust (also intrust), trust

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Choose the Right Synonym for task

Noun

task, duty, job, chore, stint, assignment mean a piece of work to be done. task implies work imposed by a person in authority or an employer or by circumstance. charged with a variety of tasks duty implies an obligation to perform or responsibility for performance. the duties of a lifeguard job applies to a piece of work voluntarily performed; it may sometimes suggest difficulty or importance. the job of turning the company around chore implies a minor routine activity necessary for maintaining a household or farm. every child was assigned chores stint implies a carefully allotted or measured quantity of assigned work or service. a 2-month stint as a reporter assignment implies a definite limited task assigned by one in authority. a reporter's assignment

Noun

task, duty, and job mean a piece of work assigned or to be done. task is used for work given by a person in a position of authority. The boss used to give me every difficult task. duty is used when a person has responsibility to do the work. The duty of police is to protect people. job may mean that the work is necessary, hard, or important. We all have to do our job.

Examples of task in a Sentence

Noun

Our first task is to review the budget. one of my tasks in the morning is to make lunches for everyone in the family

Verb

I have been tasked by the host with bringing the pies for Thanksgiving this year.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Coming back to Chapel Hall was no easy task, but Brown accepted the challenge and earned a victory over South Carolina in the season opener. Scooby Axson, SI.com, "UNC Downs Miami for Second Straight Underdog Win Under Mack Brown," 8 Sep. 2019 Their first task was learning the military's communication system. Betty Reid, azcentral, "To Chester Nez, last of the original Code Talkers, the words are more than a code," 29 Aug. 2019 Johnson officially became prime minister late last month following the resignation of Theresa May, and has set his primary task as delivering Brexit. Fox News, "Boris Johnson asks Queen to suspend Parliament to push through no-deal Brexit," 29 Aug. 2019 Given, the operating system's 2.5 billion users, that's no small task. Louise Matsakis, WIRED, "The Android 10 Privacy and Security Upgrades You Should Know About," 22 Aug. 2019 But returning the offense to its 2017 level of play is no easy task. Christian Simmons, sun-sentinel.com, "After regressing last year, FAU offense looks to bounce back despite many questions remaining," 12 Aug. 2019 However, incorporating Fed expectations or actions into an investment strategy is not an easy task. Tendayi Kapfidze, CBS News, "Fed's first rate cut in more than 10 years: What it could mean for your finances," 1 Aug. 2019 Cutting back the plants by about one-half and shaping the basket a bit is an easy task. Jo Ellen Meyers Sharp, Indianapolis Star, "The Hoosier Gardener: Common problems challenge gardeners," 25 July 2019 But understanding where lunar water comes from and its current activity is no easy task. Michael Greshko, National Geographic, "India's historic moon mission launches toward lunar south pole," 22 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Senior running backs Derrick Strongs and Alex Carrillo make up the rushing attack, as sophomore Tyler Morris, senior Breven Reifsteck and junior transfer Landon Morris are tasked with replacing Diamond Evans and Michael Love at receiver. Rich Mayor, chicagotribune.com, "Pioneer Press 2019 football preview: Nazareth Roadrunners," 23 Aug. 2019 In Frozen Adventures, the familiar characters of Elsa, Anna, Kristoff, Sven and Olaf are featured as players are tasked with building, exploring and customizing the Arendelle Castle and its surrounding kingdom. Trilby Beresford, The Hollywood Reporter, "Jam City, Disney Unveil First Look at 'Frozen Adventures' Mobile Game," 23 Aug. 2019 Burrows, a lawyer and businessman, succeeded Bonnen as chairman of the tax writing committee and was tasked with pushing through a bill to reduce the growth of property taxes - a goal Bonnen failed to reach in 2017. James Barragán, Dallas News, "Gov. Abbott endorses former GOP caucus chair despite political hit list scandal," 22 Aug. 2019 After the first meeting with others tasked to write the report, Tolly returned to her hotel room and cried. Anchorage Daily News, "Icelandic glaciologist feels a weighty responsibility," 3 Aug. 2019 In one episode, Castelli and his castmates worked as butchers for a local meat trader, tasked with chopping off the heads of chickens and pigs; the scene takes a surprising turn when Castelli vomits. Jason Parham, WIRED, "When Influencers Switch Platforms—and Bare It All," 19 Aug. 2019 Then there’s that madcap trio of supposedly scary bad guys tasked with tracking down Deloris. Joanne Engelhardt, The Mercury News, "Broadway by the Bay’s ‘Sister Act’ full of nostalgia, terrific acting," 16 Aug. 2019 Burton is, then, in a unique position: a gatekeeper tasked with taking on even the most difficult projects because client requests often have significance below the surface. Nicole Blackwood, chicagotribune.com, "Tailor shop Uncommon Closet stitches community together, affirming and catering to queer clientele," 15 Aug. 2019 New Yorkers are known for their boastfulness, but, outside the ranks of those tasked with developing and defending the city’s homeless services system, few now take much pride in that system. Stephen Eide, Orange County Register, "What’s wrong with more rights for the homeless?," 14 Aug. 2019

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

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for task

Noun

Middle English taske, from Middle French dialect (Picardy, Flanders) tasque, from Medieval Latin tasca tax or service imposed by a feudal superior, alteration of *taxa, from taxare to tax

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Statistics for task

Last Updated

11 Sep 2019

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Time Traveler for task

The first known use of task was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for task

task

noun

English Language Learners Definition of task

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a piece of work that has been given to someone : a job for someone to do

task

verb

English Language Learners Definition of task (Entry 2 of 2)

: to assign (someone) a piece of work : to give (someone) a job to do

task

noun
\ ˈtask How to pronounce task (audio) \

Kids Definition of task

: a piece of work that has been assigned, needs to be done, or presents a challenge On Saturdays Claudia emptied the wastebaskets, a task she despised.— E. L. Konigsburg, Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler

task

noun
\ ˈtask How to pronounce task (audio) \

Medical Definition of task

: the performance that is required of the subject in a psychological experiment or test and that is usually communicated to a human subject by verbal instructions

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More from Merriam-Webster on task

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with task

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for task

Spanish Central: Translation of task

Nglish: Translation of task for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of task for Arabic Speakers

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