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or distributer

[dih-strib-yuh-ter] /dɪˈstrɪb yə tər/
a person or thing that distributes.
  1. a person, firm, etc., engaged in the general distribution or marketing of some article or class of goods.
  2. a wholesaler who has exclusive rights to market, within a given territory, the goods of a manufacturer or company.
Automotive, Machinery. a device in a multicylinder engine that distributes the igniting voltage to the spark plugs in a definite sequence.
  1. (in a press) one of the rollers for spreading ink on the table, rolling it to a proper consistency, and transferring it to rollers that ink the form or plate.
  2. Also called distributor bar. (in a Linotype) a bar with keylike cuts along its length, for sorting matrices into their proper magazines after type has been cast.
Origin of distributor
From the Late Latin word distribūtor, dating back to 1520-30. See distribute, -tor
Related forms
subdistributor, noun
underdistributor, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for distributor
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • She was not a conqueror of nations or a distributor of crowns, but a giver of alms.

  • Man himself is a great carrier and distributor of his own diseases.

    More Science From an Easy Chair

    Sir E. Ray (Edwin Ray) Lankester
  • As a rule, all that a "pusher" or distributor can tell is where he got the bad money.

    The Barrel Mystery

    William J. (William James) Flynn
  • The distributor of papers looked at her a little sharply as he went by.

    When Sarah Went to School Elsie Singmaster
  • But he was by now almost a capitalist—he was a distributor of meal-tickets.

    H. R. Edwin Lefevre
British Dictionary definitions for distributor


a person or thing that distributes
a wholesaler or middleman engaged in the distribution of a category of goods, esp to retailers in a specific area
the device in a petrol engine that distributes the high-tension voltage to the sparking plugs in the sequence of the firing order
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for distributor

1520s, distributer (Latinized form is from 1570s), agent noun from Latin distribuere (see distribution). As a part in an internal combustion engine, from 1905.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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