get the message


a communication containing some information, news, advice, request, or the like, sent by messenger, radio, telephone, or other means.
an official communication, as from a chief executive to a legislative body: the president's message to Congress.
the inspired utterance of a prophet or sage.
Computers. one or more words taken as a unit.
the point, moral, or meaning of a gesture, utterance, novel, motion picture, etc.
get the message, Informal. to understand or comprehend, especially to infer the correct meaning from circumstances, hints, etc.: If we don't invite him to the party, maybe he'll get the message.

1250–1300; Middle English < Old French < Vulgar Latin *missāticum, equivalent to Latin miss(us) sent (past participle of mittere to send) + -āticum -age

intermessage, noun

massage, message. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
message (ˈmɛsɪdʒ)
1.  a communication, usually brief, from one person or group to another
2.  an implicit meaning or moral, as in a work of art
3.  a formal communiqué
4.  an inspired communication of a prophet or religious leader
5.  a mission; errand
6.  (Scot) (plural) shopping: going for the messages
7.  informal get the message to understand what is meant
8.  (tr) to send as a message, esp to signal (a plan, etc)
[C13: from Old French, from Vulgar Latin missāticum (unattested) something sent, from Latin missus, past participle of mittere to send]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

c.1300, "communication transmitted via a messenger," from O.Fr. message, from M.L. missaticum, from L. missus, pp. of mittere "to send." The L. word is glossed in O.E. by ærende. Specific religious sense of "divinely inspired communication via a prophet" (1540s) led to transferred sense of "the
broad meaning (of something)," first attested 1828. As a verb, "to send messages," attested from 1580s. To get the message "understand" is from 1964.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases

get the message

Also, get the picture. Understand or infer the real import or substance of something. For example, He gestured to the waiter, who got the message and brought the bill, or Kate got the picture and decided to keep her mouth shut about the error. [Mid-1900s] Also see get it.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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