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dictate

[v. dik-teyt, dik-teyt; n. dik-teyt] /v. ˈdɪk teɪt, dɪkˈteɪt; n. ˈdɪk teɪt/
verb (used with object), dictated, dictating.
1.
to say or read (something) aloud for another person to transcribe or for a machine to record:
to dictate some letters to a secretary.
2.
to prescribe or lay down authoritatively or peremptorily; command unconditionally:
to dictate peace terms to a conquered enemy.
verb (used without object), dictated, dictating.
3.
to say or read aloud something to be written down by a person or recorded by a machine.
4.
to give orders.
noun
5.
an authoritative order or command.
6.
a guiding or governing principle, requirement, etc.:
to follow the dictates of one's conscience.
Origin
1585-1595
1585-95; < Latin dictātus, past participle of dictāre to say repeatedly, prescribe, order, frequentative of dīcere to say
Related forms
dictatingly, adverb
misdictated, adjective
predictate, verb (used with object), predictated, predictating.
redictate, verb, redictated, redictating.
undictated, adjective
Synonyms
6. bidding, urging, prompting.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for dictate
  • Then you hold down a button and dictate the command.
  • Therefore, they can never reproduce more of less than what their genes dictate.
  • Thus far the scientists cannot dictate what the cells will become.
  • As a child of the '80's, I had many of these toys and played with them much longer than a kid's attention span would dictate.
  • The change would allow universities to dictate how those staff members allocated their time between teaching and other activities.
  • In each mode population numbers always dictate the contracts.
  • Past generations didn't dictate to future ones.
  • Then she transcribes what you've dictated in orderly fashion, with a workload she can plan.
  • Generally, the products you sell will dictate where you should advertise.
  • Tropical trade winds dictate much of Hawaii's weather.
British Dictionary definitions for dictate

dictate

verb (dɪkˈteɪt)
1.
to say (messages, letters, speeches, etc) aloud for mechanical recording or verbatim transcription by another person
2.
(transitive) to prescribe (commands) authoritatively
3.
(intransitive) to act in a tyrannical manner; seek to impose one's will on others
noun (ˈdɪkteɪt)
4.
an authoritative command
5.
a guiding principle or rule: the dictates of reason
Word Origin
C17: from Latin dictāre to say repeatedly, order, from dīcere to say
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 dictate
v.

1590s, "to practice dictation, say aloud for another to write down," from Latin dictatus, past participle of dictare "say often, prescribe," frequentative of dicere "tell, say" (see diction). Sense of "to command" is 1620s. Related: Dictated; dictates; dictating.

n.

1590s, from Latin dictatum "something dictated," noun use of neuter past participle of dictare (see dictate (v.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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