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[kuh n-sahyn] /kənˈsaɪn/
verb (used with object)
to hand over or deliver formally or officially; commit (often followed by to).
to transfer to another's custody or charge; entrust.
to set apart for or devote to (a special purpose or use):
to consign two afternoons a week to the club.
to banish or set apart in one's mind; relegate:
to consign unpleasant thoughts to oblivion.
  1. to ship, as by common carrier, especially for sale or custody.
  2. to address for such shipment.
Obsolete. to confirm or ratify, as with a seal or other token.
verb (used without object)
to agree or assent.
Obsolete. to yield or submit.
Origin of consign
late Middle English
1400-50; late Middle English; apparently (< Middle French consigner) < Medieval Latin consignāre to mark with sign of cross, Latin: to mark with a seal. See con-, sign
Related forms
consignable, adjective
[kon-sig-ney-shuh n] /ˌkɒn sɪgˈneɪ ʃən/ (Show IPA),
preconsign, verb (used with object)
reconsign, verb (used with object)
unconsignable, adjective
unconsigned, adjective
1. relegate, assign. 2. confide. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for consign
  • consign to the scrap heap the notion that this holiday requires exact wine-and-food matching alchemy.
  • Some service tasks will consign you to comparative obscurity.
  • Communists used to air-brush people out of history rather than consign them to it.
  • Fate's retribution has been to consign the two to an eternity together in uncomfortably close quarters.
  • Failure to adopt a meaningful plan of action will consign them to a permanent cycle of want.
  • Nor should it: human knowledge is too precious to consign to the ether alone.
  • It would, therefore, consign a non-trivial share of the world's people to continued or even deepening poverty.
  • Literary editors tend to consign them straight to the bin.
  • Editors in poetic frenzy consign him to infernal torments.
  • Namely, consign them all to the decontamination work within the exclusion zone for the rest of their lives.
British Dictionary definitions for consign


verb (mainly transitive)
to hand over or give into the care or charge of another; entrust
to commit irrevocably: he consigned the papers to the flames
to commit for admittance: to consign someone to jail
to address or deliver (goods) for sale, disposal, etc: it was consigned to his London address
(intransitive) (obsolete) to assent; agree
Derived Forms
consignable, adjective
consignation, noun
Word Origin
C15: from Old French consigner, from Latin consignāre to put one's seal to, sign, from signum mark, sign
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for consign

early 15c., "to ratify by a sign or seal," from Middle French consigner (15c.), from Latin consignare "to seal, register," originally "to mark with a sign," from com- "together" (see com-) + signare "to sign, mark," from signum "sign" (see sign (n.)). Commercial sense is from 1650s. Related: Consignee; consignor.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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