What does dictate mean?

Definitions for dictate
ˈdɪk teɪt, dɪkˈteɪt; ˈdɪk teɪtdic·tate

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word dictate.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. dictatenoun

    an authoritative rule

  2. dictateverb

    a guiding principle

    "the dictates of reason"

  3. order, prescribe, dictateverb

    issue commands or orders for

  4. dictateverb

    say out loud for the purpose of recording

    "He dictated a report to his secretary"

  5. dictateverb

    rule as a dictator


  1. dictatenoun

    An order or command.

    I must obey the dictates of my conscience.

  2. dictateverb

    To order, command, control.

  3. dictateverb

    To speak in order for someone to write down the words.

  4. Etymology: From dictatus, perfect passive participle of dicto, frequentative of dico.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Dictatenoun

    Rule or maxim delivered with authority; prescription; prescript.

    Etymology: dictatum, Latin.

    Others cast about for new discoveries, and to seek in their own thoughts for those right helps of art which will scarce be found, I fear, by those who servilely confine themselves to the dictates of others. John Locke.

    I credit what the Grecian dictates say,
    And Samian sounds o’er Scota’s hills convey. Matthew Prior.

    Then let this dictate of my love prevail;
    Instant, to foreign realms prepare to sail,
    To learn your father’s fortunes. Alexander Pope, Odyssey, b. i.

  2. To DICTATEverb

    To deliver to another with authority; to declare with confidence.

    Etymology: dicto, Latin.

    The spoils of elephants the roofs inlay,
    And studded amber darts a golden ray;
    Such, and not nobler, in the realms above,
    My wonder dictates is the dome of Jove. Alexander Pope, Odyssey.

    Whatsoever is dictated to us by God himself, or by men who are divinely inspired, must be believed with full assurance. Isaac Watts, Logick.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Dictateverb

    to tell or utter so that another may write down; to inspire; to compose; as, to dictate a letter to an amanuensis

  2. Dictateverb

    to say; to utter; to communicate authoritatively; to deliver (a command) to a subordinate; to declare with authority; to impose; as, to dictate the terms of a treaty; a general dictates orders to his troops

  3. Dictateverb

    to speak as a superior; to command; to impose conditions (on)

  4. Dictateverb

    to compose literary works; to tell what shall be written or said by another

  5. Dictateverb

    a statement delivered with authority; an order; a command; an authoritative rule, principle, or maxim; a prescription; as, listen to the dictates of your conscience; the dictates of the gospel

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Dictate

    dik′tāt, v.t. to tell another what to say or write: to communicate with authority: to point out: to command—(arch. Dict).—n. an order, rule, or direction: impulse.—ns. Dictā′tion, act, art, or practice of dictating: overbearing command; Dictā′tor, one invested for a time with absolute authority—originally an extraordinary Roman magistrate:—fem. Dictā′tress, Dictātrix.—adj. Dictatō′rial, like a dictator: absolute: authoritative.—adv. Dictatō′rially.—ns. Dictā′torship, Dic′tature.—adj. Dic′tatory. [L. dictāre, -ātumdicĕre, to say.]

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British National Corpus

  1. Verbs Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'dictate' in Verbs Frequency: #951

How to pronounce dictate?

How to say dictate in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of dictate in Chaldean Numerology is: 4

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of dictate in Pythagorean Numerology is: 8

Examples of dictate in a Sentence

  1. Dean Elgar:

    We know we’ve got to try and throw a first punch. We didn’t do that in the first test, it was almost like we waited for them to make a plan and then put ourselves under a lot of pressure with them scoring nearly 400 runs in their first innings, now we want to look to put them under pressure straight away. If we know if we put our best foot forward we can start to dictate the way the test goes.

  2. Noel Monk:

    Eddie was having a lot of problems at that time, after they got married, he had drank too much, he had done too much. They went from the church to the reception. It was a beautiful mansion with wonderful people, but I couldn’t find Eddie. I couldn’t find Valerie. So I went looking for them and found them in the bathroom upstairs… Valerie was soothing him. It was certainly understandable. It didn’t impact their marriage. It certainly didn’t dictate the way things might turned out.’ The marriage lasted for almost two decades until their divorce in 2007, but the band was crumbling much sooner than that. There were mountains of cocaine and ever-flowing booze involved, but Van Halen was also led by a flamboyant singer with a fearsome Jekyll and Hyde personality. David Lee Roth in London. (Courtesy of Noel Monk).

  3. Prime Minister Stefan Lofven:

    They are allowing the Sweden Democrats to dictate the terms of Swedish politics.

  4. Jim Greer:

    We have always sought to provide a wide variety of content and programming that would be of interest to customers, and do not dictate or control programming on channels we carry, any suggestion otherwise is wrong.

  5. Zhang Baohui:

    This is about exposing Washington's declining primacy, china gains reputational power by showing the U.S. that it can't dictate Chinese actions.

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Translations for dictate

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"dictate." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 25 Mar. 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/dictate>.

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    given to or marked by the consumption of alcohol
    • A. splay
    • B. bibulous
    • C. lank
    • D. currish

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