Dictionary > English Dictionary > Definition, synonym and antonym of command
Meaning of command by Wiktionary Dictionary



    From Old French comander ( modern French commander ), from Vulgar Latin *commandare, from Latin commendare, from com- + mandare, from mandō ( “I order, command” ). Compare commend, mandate .


    • ( RP ) IPA: /kəˈmɑːnd/
    • ( GenAm ) IPA: /kəˈmænd/
    • Hyphenation: com‧mand


    command ( plural: commands )

    1. An order, a compelling task given to an inferior or a machine .
      I was given a command to cease shooting .
    2. The right or authority to order, control or dispose of; the right to be obeyed or to compel obedience .
      to have command of an army
    3. power of control, direction or disposal; mastery .
      he had command of the situation
      England has long held command of the sea
      a good command of language
    4. A position of chief authority; a position involving the right or power to order or control .
      General Smith was placed in command .
    5. The act of commanding; exercise or authority of influence .
      Command cannot be otherwise than savage, for it implies an appeal to force, should force be needful. ( H. Spencer, Social Statics, p. 180 )
    6. ( military ) A body or troops, or any naval or military force, under the control of a particular officer .
    7. Dominating situation; range or control or oversight; extent of view or outlook .
    8. ( computing ) A directive to a computer program acting as an interpreter of some kind, in order to perform a specific task .
    9. ( baseball ) The degree of control a pitcher has over his pitches .
      He's got good command tonight .


    command ( third-person singular simple present commands present participle commanding, simple past and past participle commanded )

    1. ( transitive ) To order, give orders; to compel or direct with authority .
      The soldier was commanded to cease firing .
      The king commanded his servant to bring him dinner .
    2. ( transitive ) To have or exercise supreme power, control or authority over, especially military; to have under direction or control .
      to command an army or a ship
    3. ( transitive ) To require with authority; to demand, order, enjoin .
      he commanded silence
      If thou be the son of God, command that these stones be made bread. ( Mat. IV. 3. )
    4. ( transitive ) to dominate through ability, resources, position etc.; to overlook .
      Bridges commanded by a fortified house. ( Motley. )
    5. ( transitive ) To exact, compel or secure by my moral influence; to deserve, claim .
      A good magistrate commands the respect and affections of the people .
      Justice commands the respect and affections of the people .
      The best goods command the best price .
    6. To hold, to control the use of
      The fort commanded the bay .


    See also

    • command in The Century Dictionary, The Century Co., New York, 1911
    • “command” in OED Online, Oxford University Press, 1989 .


    • frequency based on Project Gutenberg corpus">Most common English words before 1923: considerable · private · dinner · #769: command · etc. · broke · waiting

Explanation of command by Wordnet Dictionary


    1. make someone do something

    2. be in command of

    3. The general commanded a huge army
    4. demand as one's due

    5. This speaker commands a high fee
      The author commands a fair hearing from his readers
    6. exercise authoritative control or power over

    7. Command the military forces
    8. look down on

    1. availability for use

    2. the materials at the command of the potters grew
    3. the power or authority to command

    4. an admiral in command
    5. great skillfulness and knowledge of some subject or activity

    6. a good command of French
    7. a line of code written as part of a computer program

    8. an authoritative direction or instruction to do something

    9. a military unit or region under the control of a single officer

    10. a position of highest authority

    11. the corporation has just undergone a change in command

    Definition of command by GCIDE Dictionary


    1. Command ( ?; 61 ), v. t. [imp. & p. p. Commanded; p. pr. & vb. n. Commanding.] [OE. comaunden, commanden, OF. comander, F. commander, fr. L. com- + mandare to commit to, to command. Cf. Commend, Mandate.]
      1. To order with authority; to lay injunction upon; to direct; to bid; to charge.

      We are commanded to forgive our enemies, but you never read that we are commanded to forgive our friends. Bacon.

      Go to your mistress:

      Say, I command her come to me. Shak.

      2. To exercise direct authority over; to have control of; to have at one's disposal; to lead.

      Monmouth commanded the English auxiliaries. Macaulay.

      Such aid as I can spare you shall command. Shak.

      3. To have within a sphere of control, influence, access, or vision; to dominate by position; to guard; to overlook.

      Bridges commanded by a fortified house. Motley.

      Up to the eastern tower,

      Whose height commands as subject all the vale. Shak.

      One side commands a view of the finest garden. Addison.

      4. To have power or influence of the nature of authority over; to obtain as if by ordering; to receive as a due; to challenge; to claim; as, “justice commands the respect and affections of the people; the best goods command the best price”.

      'Tis not in mortals to command success. Addison.

      5. To direct to come; to bestow. [Obs.]

      I will command my blessing upon you. Lev. xxv. 21.

      Syn. -- To bid; order; direct; dictate; charge; govern; rule; overlook.

    2. Command, v. i.
      1. To have or to exercise direct authority; to govern; to sway; to influence; to give an order or orders.

      And reigned, commanding in his monarchy. Shak.

      For the king had so commanded concerning [Haman]. Esth. iii. 2.

      2. To have a view, as from a superior position.

      Far and wide his eye commands. Milton.

    3. Command, n.
      1. An authoritative order requiring obedience; a mandate; an injunction.

      Awaiting what command their mighty chief

      Had to impose. Milton.

      2. The possession or exercise of authority.

      Command and force may often create, but can never cure, an aversion. Locke.

      3. Authority; power or right of control; leadership; as, “the forces under his command”.

      4. Power to dominate, command, or overlook by means of position; scope of vision; survey.

      The steepy stand

      Which overlooks the vale with wide command. Dryden.

      5. Control; power over something; sway; influence; as, “to have command over one's temper or voice; the fort has command of the bridge”.

      He assumed an absolute command over his readers. Dryden.

      6. A body of troops, or any naval or military force or post, or the whole territory under the authority or control of a particular officer.

      Word of command ( Mil. ), a word or phrase of definite and established meaning, used in directing the movements of soldiers; as, aim; fire; shoulder arms, etc.

      Syn. -- Control; sway; power; authority; rule; dominion; sovereignty; mandate; order; injunction; charge; behest. See Direction.