[ish-oo or, esp. British, is-yoo]
See more synonyms for issue on
  1. the act of sending out or putting forth; promulgation; distribution: the issue of food and blankets to flood victims.
  2. something that is printed or published and distributed, especially a given number of a periodical: Have you seen the latest issue of the magazine?
  3. something that is sent out or put forth in any form.
  4. a quantity of something that is officially offered for sale or put into circulation at one time: a new issue of commemorative stamps; a new bond issue.
  5. a point in question or a matter that is in dispute, as between contending parties in an action at law.
  6. a point, matter, or dispute, the decision of which is of special or public importance: the political issues.
  7. a point, the decision of which determines a matter: The real issue in the strike was the right to bargain collectively.
  8. a point at which a matter is ready for decision: to bring a case to an issue.
  9. something proceeding from any source, as a product, effect, result, or consequence: His words were the issue of an intelligent man.
  10. Often issues.
    1. a personal or emotional problem: I had issues that prevented me from doing well in school.
    2. any problem or difficulty: Sorry I'm late—I had an issue with parking.
  11. the ultimate result, event, or outcome of a proceeding, affair, etc.: the issue of a contest.
  12. a distribution of food rations, clothing, equipment, or ammunition to a number of officers or enlisted soldiers, or to a military unit.
  13. offspring; progeny: to die without issue.
  14. a going, coming, passing, or flowing out: free issue and entry.
  15. a place or means of egress; outlet or exit.
  16. something that comes out, as an outflowing stream.
  17. Pathology.
    1. a discharge of blood, pus, or the like.
    2. an incision, ulcer, or the like, emitting such a discharge.
  18. issues, English Law. the profits from land or other property.
  19. the printing of copies of a work from the original setting of type with some slight changes: the third issue of the poem.
  20. Obsolete. a proceeding or action.
verb (used with object), is·sued, is·su·ing.
  1. to put out; deliver for use, sale, etc.; put into circulation.
  2. to mint, print, or publish for sale or distribution: to issue a new coin; to issue a reprint of a book.
  3. to distribute (food, clothing, etc.) to one or more officers or enlisted soldiers or to a military unit.
  4. to send out; discharge; emit.
verb (used without object), is·sued, is·su·ing.
  1. to go, pass, or flow out; come forth; emerge: to issue forth to battle.
  2. to be sent, put forth, or distributed authoritatively or publicly, as a legal writ or money.
  3. to be published, as a book.
  4. to originate or proceed from any source.
  5. to arise as a result or consequence; result: a reaction that issues from the stimulus.
  6. Chiefly Law. to proceed as offspring, or be born or descended.
  7. Chiefly Law. to come as a yield or profit, as from land.
  8. Archaic. to have the specified outcome, result, etc. (often followed by in).
  9. Obsolete. to end; terminate.
  1. at issue,
    1. being disputed or under discussion.
    2. being at opposite viewpoints; in disagreement: Medical experts are still at issue over the proper use of tranquilizers.
  2. join issue,
    1. to enter into controversy or take exception to.
    2. to submit an issue jointly for legal decision.
  3. take issue, to disagree; dispute: He took issue with me on my proposal for a new advertising campaign.

Origin of issue

1275–1325; (noun) Middle English < Middle French: place or passage out; Old French (e)issue < Vulgar Latin *exūta, noun use of feminine of *exūtus, Latin exitus exit1; (v.) Middle English issuen, derivative of the noun, or < Middle French, Old French (e)issu, past participle of issir to go out (≪ Latin exīre); see exit2
Related formsis·sue·less, adjectiveis·su·er, nounout·is·sue, verb (used with object), out·is·sued, out·is·su·ing.pre·is·sue, noun, verb (used with object), pre·is·sued, pre·is·su·ing.self-is·sued, adjectiveself-is·su·ing, adjectiveun·der·is·sue, nounun·is·sued, adjective

Synonyms for issue

See more synonyms for on
2. copy, edition, printing. 5, 7. crux. 6, 7. problem, question. 11. upshot, conclusion, end. 25. See emerge. 28. flow, emanate, arise, spring. 29. ensue.

Antonyms for issue

25. return. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for at issue


  1. the act of sending or giving out something; supply; delivery
  2. something issued; an edition of stamps, a magazine, etc
  3. the number of identical items, such as banknotes or shares in a company, that become available at a particular time
  4. the act of emerging; outflow; discharge
  5. something flowing out, such as a river
  6. a place of outflow; outlet
  7. the descendants of a person; offspring; progeny
  8. a topic of interest or discussion
  9. an important subject requiring a decision
  10. an outcome or consequence; result
  11. pathol
    1. a suppurating sore
    2. discharge from a wound
  12. law the matter remaining in dispute between the parties to an action after the pleadings
  13. the yield from or profits arising out of land or other property
  14. military the allocation of items of government stores, such as food, clothing, and ammunition
  15. library science
    1. the system for recording current loans
    2. the number of books loaned in a specified period
  16. obsolete an act, deed, or proceeding
  17. at issue
    1. under discussion
    2. in disagreement
  18. force the issue to compel decision on some matter
  19. join issue
    1. to join in controversy
    2. to submit an issue for adjudication
  20. take issue to disagree
verb -sues, -suing or -sued
  1. to come forth or emerge or cause to come forth or emerge
  2. to publish or deliver (a newspaper, magazine, etc)
  3. (tr) to make known or announce
  4. (intr) to originate or proceed
  5. (intr) to be a consequence; result
  6. (intr foll by in) to end or terminate
  7. (tr)
    1. to give out or allocate (equipment, a certificate, etc) officially to someone
    2. (foll by with)to supply officially (with)
Derived Formsissueless, adjectiveissuer, noun

Word Origin for issue

C13: from Old French eissue way out, from eissir to go out, from Latin exīre, from ex- 1 + īre to go
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

Word Origin and History for at issue



c.1300, "exit, a going out, flowing out," from Old French issue "a way out, exit," from fem. past participle of issir "to go out," from Latin exire (cf. Italian uscire, Catalan exir), from ex- "out" (see ex-) + ire "to go," from PIE root *ei- "to go" (see ion). Meaning "discharge of blood or other fluid from the body" is from 1520s; sense of "offspring" is from late 14c. Meaning "outcome of an action" is attested from late 14c., probably from French; legal sense of "point in question at the conclusion of the presentation by both parties in a suit" (early 14c. in Anglo-French) led to transferred sense of "a point to be decided" (1836). Meaning "action of sending into publication or circulation" is from 1833.



c.1300, "to flow out," from issue (n.) or else from Old French issu, past participle of issir; sense of "to send out authoritatively" is from c.1600; that of "to supply (someone with something)" is from 1925. Related: Issued; issuing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

at issue in Medicine


  1. A discharge, as of blood or pus.
  2. A lesion, a wound, or an ulcer that produces a discharge of this sort.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Idioms and Phrases with at issue

at issue


In question, under discussion; also, to be decided. For example, Who will pay for the refreshments was the point at issue. [Early 1800s]


In conflict, in disagreement, as in Physicians are still at issue over the appropriate use of hormone therapy. This usage, from legal terminology, was defined by Sir William Blackstone (Commentaries on the Laws of England, 1768), who said that when a point is affirmed by one side and denied by the other, “they are then said to be at issue.”


see at issue; take issue with.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.