ex·​pire | \ ik-ˈspī(-ə)r How to pronounce expire (audio) , usually for intransitive sense 3 and transitive sense 2 ek- \
expired; expiring

Definition of expire

intransitive verb

1 : to breathe one's last breath : die
2 : to come to an end: such as
a : to exceed its period of validity The contract will expire next month.
b : to pass its expiration date (see expiration date sense 2) This milk has expired. " … when drugs expire, you can't just leave these things lying around."— Ed Haislmaier
3 : to emit the breath

transitive verb

1 obsolete : conclude
2 : to breathe out from or as if from the lungs
3 archaic : emit

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Examples of expire in a Sentence

My driver's license has expired. She expired after a long illness. measuring the volume of air expired from the lungs
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Recent Examples on the Web The city's current sales tax is set to expire when bonds issued in 1999 are paid off, according to the city's website and mayor. Arkansas Online, 13 Oct. 2021 Three other Kentucky Supreme Court justices have their term expire at the end of next year and are up for reelection, including Justices Lisabeth Tabor Hughes, Michelle Keller and Christopher Nickell. Joe Sonka, The Courier-Journal, 13 Oct. 2021 Uncertainty surrounding the economic and policy outlook is even greater than usual right now because President Biden has yet to announce who should lead the central bank after the terms of Messrs. Powell and Clarida expire early next year. Nick Timiraos, WSJ, 13 Oct. 2021 Some production work will continue, however, because it is governed by separate contracts that have yet to expire, and those contracts contain no-strike clauses. Gene Maddaus, Variety, 13 Oct. 2021 The vote Tuesday to allow for more federal borrowing for about three months — the exact date the new spending limit would expire is not yet known — amounted to a short-term win for Democrats. Jennifer Haberkorn, Los Angeles Times, 12 Oct. 2021 To win the necessary votes, the bill was amended to expire on May 1, 2022. Mark Pazniokas, courant.com, 12 Oct. 2021 In an effort to spur development of biologic competition after patents expire, Congress passed the Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act of 2009. Dana P. Goldman, STAT, 11 Oct. 2021 Seven of the council’s 13 members have terms that expire in 2022. Washington Post, 11 Oct. 2021

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for expire

Middle English, from Middle French or Latin; Anglo-French espirer to breathe out, from Latin exspirare, from ex- + spirare to breathe

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Time Traveler for expire

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The first known use of expire was in the 15th century

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Last Updated

16 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Expire.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/expire. Accessed 20 Oct. 2021.

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More Definitions for expire



English Language Learners Definition of expire

: to end : to no longer be valid after a period of time
: to die
: to breathe out (air) : exhale


ex·​pire | \ ik-ˈspīr How to pronounce expire (audio) \
expired; expiring

Kids Definition of expire

1 : to come to an end Your membership expired.
3 : to breathe out : exhale


ex·​pire | \ ik-ˈspī(ə)r, usually for vi 2 and vt ek- \
expired; expiring

Medical Definition of expire

intransitive verb

1 : to breathe one's last breath : die
2 : to emit the breath

transitive verb

: to breathe out from or as if from the lungs the basal metabolism test … measures the amount of carbon dioxide expired by the lungs— J. D. Ratcliff

More from Merriam-Webster on expire

Nglish: Translation of expire for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of expire for Arabic Speakers


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