command
Pronunciation
  • (RP) IPA: /kəˈmɑːnd/
  • (America) IPA: /kəˈmænd/
Noun

command

  1. An order to do something.
    I was given a command to cease shooting.
  2. The right or authority to order, control or dispose of; the right to be obeyed or to compel obedience.
    to have command of an army
  3. power of control, direction or disposal; mastery.
    he had command of the situation
    England has long held command of the sea
    a good command of language
  4. A position of chief authority; a position involving the right or power to order or control.
    General Smith was placed in command.
  5. The act of commanding; exercise or authority of influence.
    • , Social Statics, p. 180
      Command cannot be otherwise than savage, for it implies an appeal to force, should force be needful.
  6. (military) A body or troops, or any naval or military force, under the control of a particular officer; by extension, any object or body in someone's charge.
    • 1899 February, Joseph Conrad, “The Heart of Darkness”, in Blackwood’s Edinburgh Magazine, volume CLXV, number M, New York, N.Y.: The Leonard Scott Publishing Company, […], OCLC 1042815524 ↗, part I:
      I asked myself what I was to do there, now my boat was lost. As a matter of fact, I had plenty to do in fishing my command out of the river.
  7. Dominating situation; range or control or oversight; extent of view or outlook.
  8. (computing) A directive to a computer program acting as an interpreter of some kind, in order to perform a specific task.
  9. (baseball) The degree of control a pitcher has over his pitches.
    He's got good command tonight.
Translations Translations Translations Translations Translations Verb

command (commands, present participle commanding; past and past participle commanded)

  1. (ambitransitive) To order, give orders; to compel or direct with authority.
    The soldier was commanded to cease firing.
    The king commanded his servant to bring him dinner.
    • 1625, Francis Bacon, Of Revenge
      We are commanded to forgive our enemies, but you never read that we are commanded to forgive our friends.
    • c. 1590–1592, William Shakespeare, “The Taming of the Shrew”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: Printed by Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358 ↗, [Act V, scene ii]:
      Go to your mistress: / Say, I command her come to me.
  2. (ambitransitive) To have or exercise supreme power, control or authority over, especially military; to have under direction or control.
    to command an army or a ship
    • 18, Thomas Babington Macaulay, chapter 2, in The History of England from the Accession of James the Second, volume (please specify ), London: Longman, Brown, Green, and Longmans, OCLC 1069526323 ↗:
    • 1591, William Shakespeare, “The Second Part of Henry the Sixt, […]”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: Printed by Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358 ↗, [Act IV, scene v]:
      Such aid as I can spare you shall command.
  3. (transitive) To require with authority; to demand, order, enjoin.
    he commanded silence
    • 1611, The Holy Bible, […] (King James Version), imprinted at London: By Robert Barker, […], OCLC 964384981 ↗, Matthew 4:3 ↗:
      If thou be the son of God, command that these stones be made bread.
    • 2013, Louise Taylor, English talent gets left behind as Premier League keeps importing (in The Guardian, 20 August 2013)
      The reasons for this growing disconnect are myriad and complex but the situation is exacerbated by the reality that those English players who do smash through our game's "glass ceiling" command radically inflated transfer fees.
  4. (transitive) to dominate through ability, resources, position etc.; to overlook.
    Bridges commanded by a fortified house. (Motley.)
  5. (transitive) To exact, compel or secure by influence; to deserve, claim.
    A good magistrate commands the respect and affections of the people.
    Justice commands the respect and affections of the people.
    The best goods command the best price.
    This job commands a salary of £30,000.
  6. (transitive) To hold, to control the use of.
    The fort commanded the bay.
    • bridges commanded by a fortified house
    • c. 1602, William Shakespeare, “The Tragedie of Troylus and Cressida”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: Printed by Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358 ↗, [Act I, scene ii]:
      Up to the eastern tower, / Whose height commands as subject all the vale.
    • December 1699, Joseph Addison, letter to William Congreve
      One [side] commands a view of the finest garden.
    • 1834, The Hobart Town Magazine (volume 2, page 323)
      […] they made considerable progress in the art of embalming the wild fruits of their native land, so that they might command cranberries and hindberries at all times and seasons.
  7. (intransitive, archaic) To have a view, as from a superior position.
    • 1667, John Milton, “Book 3”, in Paradise Lost. A Poem Written in Ten Books, London: Printed [by Samuel Simmons], and are to be sold by Peter Parker […] [a]nd by Robert Boulter […] [a]nd Matthias Walker, […], OCLC 228722708 ↗; republished as Paradise Lost in Ten Books: The Text Exactly Reproduced from the First Edition of 1667: […], London: Basil Montagu Pickering […], 1873, OCLC 230729554 ↗:
      Farr and wide his eye commands.
  8. (obsolete) To direct to come; to bestow.
    • 1611, The Holy Bible, […] (King James Version), imprinted at London: By Robert Barker, […], OCLC 964384981 ↗, Leviticus 25:21 ↗:
      I will command my blessing upon you.
Synonyms Translations Translations


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