dictates, dictating, dictated
(The verb is pronounced [[t]dɪkte͟ɪt, AM dɪ̱kteɪt[/t]]u>. The noun is pronounced [[t]dɪ̱kteɪt[/t]]u>.)
1) VERB If you dictate something, you say or read it aloud for someone else to write down.

[V n] Sheldon writes every day of the week, dictating his novels in the morning...

[V n] Everything he dictated was signed and sent out the same day. [Also V]

2) VERB If someone dictates to someone else, they tell them what they should do or can do.

[V to n] He had warned the West against trying to dictate to the Soviet Union...

[V n] What right has one country to dictate the environmental standards of another?...

[V wh] He cannot be allowed to dictate what can and cannot be inspected...

[V to n wh] What gives them the right to dictate to us what we should eat?...

[V n to n] The officers were more or less able to dictate terms to successive governments...

[V that] The rules of court dictate that a defendant is entitled to all evidence which may help his case.

3) VERB If one thing dictates another, the first thing causes or influences the second thing.

[V n] The film's budget dictated a tough schedule...

[V n] The way in which they dress is dictated by very rigid fashion rules...

[V wh] Of course, a number of factors will dictate how long an apple tree can survive...

[V that] Circumstances dictated that they played a defensive rather than attacking game.

4) VERB You say that reason or common sense dictates that a particular thing is the case when you believe strongly that it is the case and that reason or common sense will cause other people to agree.

[V that] Commonsense now dictates that it would be wise to sell a few shares.

5) N-COUNT: usu with supp, oft N of n A dictate is an order which you have to obey.

Its officers work alongside commanders at all levels to ensure that the dictates of the Party are followed.

6) N-COUNT: usu pl, with supp, usu N of n Dictates are principles or rules which you consider to be extremely important.

We have followed the dictates of our consciences and have done our duty.

English dictionary. 2008.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • dictate — vb Dictate, prescribe, ordain, decree, impose mean to lay down expressly something to be followed, observed, obeyed, or accepted. Dictate implies an authoritative direction by or as if by the spoken word which serves in governing or guiding one s …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • Dictate — Dic tate, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Dictated}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Dictating}.] [L. dictatus, p. p. of dictare, freq. of dicere to say. See {Diction}, and cf. {Dight}.] 1. To tell or utter so that another may write down; to inspire; to compose; as, to… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Dictate — Dic tate, v. i. 1. To speak as a superior; to command; to impose conditions (on). [1913 Webster] Who presumed to dictate to the sovereign. Macaulay. [1913 Webster] 2. To compose literary works; to tell what shall be written or said by another.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • dictate — [n] command; rule behest, bidding, code, decree, dictum, direction, edict, fiat, injunction, law, mandate, order, ordinance, precept, principle, requirement, statute, ultimatum, word; concepts 274,318,688 Ant. request dictate [v1] command; give… …   New thesaurus

  • dictate to — [phrasal verb] dictate to (someone) : to give orders to (someone) usually used as (be) dictated to I resent being dictated to by someone with half my experience. • • • Main Entry: ↑dictate …   Useful english dictionary

  • Dictate — Dic tate, n. [L. dictatum. See {Dictate}, v. t.] A statement delivered with authority; an order; a command; an authoritative rule, principle, or maxim; a prescription; as, listen to the dictates of your conscience; the dictates of the gospel.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • dictate — I noun act, authoritative suggestion, behest, charge, command, commandment, commission, decree, demand, direction, edict, enactment, fiat, imperative, imperious direction, injunction, instruction, judgment, law, mandate, order, ordinance,… …   Law dictionary

  • dictate — is pronounced with the stress on the first syllable as a noun (as in the dictates of conscience) and with the stress on the second syllable as a verb (as in dictate a letter) …   Modern English usage

  • Dictate — can refer to: Dictation (disambiguation) Dictator Edict This disambiguation page lists articles associated with the same title. If an internal link led you here, you may wish to change the link to point direc …   Wikipedia

  • dictate — ► VERB 1) state or order authoritatively. 2) say or read aloud (words to be typed or written down). 3) control or determine. ► NOUN ▪ an order or principle that must be obeyed. DERIVATIVES dictation noun …   English terms dictionary

  • dictate — [dik′tāt΄; ] also, for v. [ dik tāt′] vt., vi. dictated, dictating [< L dictatus, pp. of dictare, freq. of dicere, to speak: see DICTION] 1. to speak or read (something) aloud for someone else to write down 2. to prescribe or command… …   English World dictionary

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