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[em-uh-ser-ee] /ˈɛm əˌsɛr i/
noun, plural emissaries.
a representative sent on a mission or errand:
emissaries to negotiate a peace.
an agent sent on a mission of a secret nature, as a spy.
Anatomy. sending or coming out, as certain veins that pass through the skull and connect the venous sinuses inside with the veins outside.
pertaining to an emissary.
Archaic. sent forth, as on a mission.
Origin of emissary
1595-1605; < Latin ēmissārius one sent out, equivalent to ēmiss- (see emission) + -ārius -ary
1. delegate, ambassador, envoy, legate. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for emissaries
  • Reporters are meant to serve as emissaries between blinkered experts and broader society.
  • Comets are usually thought of as icy, dusty emissaries from the deepest reaches of the solar system.
  • They see themselves as emissaries of a national movement for whom everything is permissible.
  • But emissaries from the outside world occasionally reach them.
  • They also became our best emissaries, encouraging participation by others who were still hesitant to share their stories.
  • During the next two weeks these several emissaries made a number of contacts.
British Dictionary definitions for emissaries


/ˈɛmɪsərɪ; -ɪsrɪ/
noun (pl) -saries
  1. an agent or messenger sent on a mission, esp one who represents a government or head of state
  2. (as modifier): an emissary delegation
an agent sent on a secret mission, as a spy
(of veins) draining blood from sinuses in the dura mater to veins outside the skull
Word Origin
C17: from Latin ēmissārius emissary, spy, from ēmittere to send out; see emit
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 emissaries



1620s, from French émissaire (17c.) or directly from Latin emissarius, literally "that is sent out," from emissus, past participle of emittere "send forth" (see emit).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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emissaries in Medicine

emissary em·is·sar·y (ěm'ĭ-sěr'ē)
Any of various venous channels through the skull that connect the venous sinuses of the dura mater with veins external to the skull.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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