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[ur-juh nt] /ˈɜr dʒənt/
compelling or requiring immediate action or attention; imperative; pressing:
an urgent matter.
insistent or earnest in solicitation; importunate, as a person:
an urgent pleader.
expressed with insistence, as requests or appeals:
an urgent tone of voice.
Origin of urgent
1490-1500; < Latin urgent- (stem of urgēns), present participle of urgēre to urge; see -ent
Related forms
urgently, adverb
nonurgent, adjective
nonurgently, adverb
superurgent, adjective
superurgently, adverb
unurgent, adjective
unurgently, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for urgent
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • No doubt he told us both that he had received an urgent telegram.

    It Happened in Egypt C. N. Williamson
  • It was another two hours' leave of absence she asked for "on urgent business."

    Good Indian B. M. Bower
  • An attach from the French Embassy was waiting to speak to me on urgent business.

    My Double Life Sarah Bernhardt
  • The rapid increase of the business created an urgent demand for barrels.

  • But my most urgent task was speedily to make way with the incriminating corpse.

    City of Endless Night Milo Hastings
British Dictionary definitions for urgent


requiring or compelling speedy action or attention: the matter is urgent, an urgent message
earnest and persistent
Derived Forms
urgency (ˈɜːdʒənsɪ) noun
urgently, adverb
Word Origin
C15: via French from Latin urgent-, urgens, present participle of urgēre to urge
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 urgent

mid-15c., from Middle French urgent "pressing, impelling" (14c.), from Latin urgentem (nominative urgens), present participle of urgere "to press hard, urge" (see urge (v.)). Related: Urgently.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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