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Plain form

Third-person singular

Past tense

Past participle

Present participle

  1. (transitive) If you dispatch people or equipment somewhere, you send them there to do a particular task.
    The government has reportedly dispatched elite army troops to Baghdad.
    Vietnam dispatched ships and aircraft Saturday to the mouth of the Gulf of Thailand.
  2. (transitive) If you dispatch a message, package, etc., you send it.
    Before long, Edison was regularly dispatching instructions to his lab up north.
  3. (transitive) If you dispatch a living thing, you kill it.
    If the immune system has seen the viruses before, it can dispatch them swiftly.
    His men swiftly dispatched any French prisoners by beheading them.




  1. (countable) A dispatch is a message or report sent by a someone in a distant location.
    The New York Times ran 10 stories on Rwanda, half of them brief wire service dispatches.
  2. (uncountable) Dispatch is part of an emergency response system, such as police or ambulance, which sends personnel to deal with emergencies.
    When dispatch couldn't contact him, they called and asked me to check on him.
  3. (uncountable) The dispatch of someone to a place is the act of sending them there to do a particular task.
    They recommended to the President the dispatch of six thousand to eight thousand American combat forces.
  4. (uncountable) If you do something with dispatch you finish it without wasting time.
    We want to make sure that that work continues with all due dispatch and speed.

Related words[change]