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[em-uh-ser-ee] /ˈɛm əˌsɛr i/
noun, plural emissaries.
a representative sent on a mission or errand:
emissaries to negotiate a peace.
an agent sent on a mission of a secret nature, as a spy.
Anatomy. sending or coming out, as certain veins that pass through the skull and connect the venous sinuses inside with the veins outside.
pertaining to an emissary.
Archaic. sent forth, as on a mission.
Origin of emissary
1595-1605; < Latin ēmissārius one sent out, equivalent to ēmiss- (see emission) + -ārius -ary
1. delegate, ambassador, envoy, legate. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for emissary
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Black Meg, it may be explained, in the intervals of graver business was not averse to serving as an emissary of Venus.

    Lysbeth H. Rider Haggard
  • Joe Two-Hawk had come as a sort of emissary from the Brulés.

    Land of the Burnt Thigh Edith Eudora Kohl
  • He was sentenced to death; whether the sentence had been already executed our emissary could not ascertain.

  • He sent an emissary to request a conference with a representative of the fruit company.

  • He deputed an emissary to treat these prize-fighters with champagne.

    The Great Acceptance Cyril Arthur Edward Ranger Gull
British Dictionary definitions for emissary


/ˈɛmɪsərɪ; -ɪsrɪ/
noun (pl) -saries
  1. an agent or messenger sent on a mission, esp one who represents a government or head of state
  2. (as modifier): an emissary delegation
an agent sent on a secret mission, as a spy
(of veins) draining blood from sinuses in the dura mater to veins outside the skull
Word Origin
C17: from Latin ēmissārius emissary, spy, from ēmittere to send out; see emit
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 emissary

1620s, from French émissaire (17c.) or directly from Latin emissarius, literally "that is sent out," from emissus, past participle of emittere "send forth" (see emit).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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emissary in Medicine

emissary em·is·sar·y (ěm'ĭ-sěr'ē)
Any of various venous channels through the skull that connect the venous sinuses of the dura mater with veins external to the skull.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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