I. verb Etymology: Middle English, from Anglo-French directer, from Latin directus straight, from past participle of dirigere to direct — more at dress Date: 14th century transitive verb 1. a. obsolete to write (a letter) to a person b. to mark with the name and address of the intended recipient c. to impart orally d. to adapt in expression so as to have particular applicability <
a lawyer who directs his appeals to intelligence
2. a. to regulate the activities or course of b. to carry out the organizing, energizing, and supervising of <
direct a project
c. to dominate and determine the course of d. to train and lead performances of <
direct a movie
3. to cause to turn, move, or point undeviatingly or to follow a straight course <
X rays are directed through the body
4. to point, extend, or project in a specified line or course <
direct the nozzle downward
5. to request or enjoin with authority <
the judge directed the jury to acquit the defendant
6. to show or point out the way for <
signs directing us to the entrance
intransitive verb 1. to point out, prescribe, or determine a course or procedure 2. to act as director Synonyms: see command, conduct II. adjective Etymology: Middle English, from Latin directus Date: 15th century 1. having or being motion in the general planetary direction from west to east ; not retrograde 2. a. stemming immediately from a source <
direct result
b. being or passing in a straight line of descent from parent to offspring ; lineal <
direct ancestor
c. having no compromising or impairing element <
a direct insult
3. a. proceeding from one point to another in time or space without deviation or interruption ; straight <
a direct line
b. proceeding by the shortest way <
the direct route
4. natural, straightforward <
a direct manner
5. a. marked by absence of an intervening agency, instrumentality, or influence <
making direct observations of nature
b. effected by the action of the people or the electorate and not by representatives <
direct democracy
c. consisting of or reproducing the exact words of a speaker or writer <
a direct quotation
6. characterized by close logical, causal, or consequential relationship <
direct evidence
7. capable of dyeing without the aid of a mordant III. adverb Date: 14th century in a direct way: as a. from point to point without deviation ; by the shortest way <
flew direct to Miami
b. from the source without interruption or diversion <
the writer must take his material direct from life — Douglas Stewart
c. without an intervening agency or step <
buy direct from the manufacturer

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.


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  • direct — direct, ecte (di rèkt, rè kt ; au pluriel masculin l s ne se lie jamais : des avis di rekt et pressants ; la prononciation de la finale ct, cts, au masculin singulier ou pluriel est mal assurée ; on entend quelquefois prononcer di rè, comme… …   Dictionnaire de la Langue Française d'Émile Littré

  • Direct — Di*rect , v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Directed}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Directing}.] 1. To arrange in a direct or straight line, as against a mark, or towards a goal; to point; to aim; as, to direct an arrow or a piece of ordnance. [1913 Webster] 2. To point… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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  • direct — direct, directly Because direct is an adverb as well as an adjective, it gets in the way of directly, which is an adverb only. Directly is used (1) before an adjective in senses corresponding to those of direct (They were directly responsible for …   Modern English usage

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