[kuh-mish-uh n]


verb (used with object)

Nearby words

  1. commish,
  2. commissaire,
  3. commissar,
  4. commissariat,
  5. commissary,
  6. commission for racial equality,
  7. commission house,
  8. commission merchant,
  9. commission plan,
  10. commissionaire


Origin of commission

1300–50; Middle English (< Anglo-French) < Latin commissiōn- (stem of commissiō) a committing. See com-, mission, commit

Related forms
Can be confusedcommission omission Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for commissive



a duty or task committed to a person or group to perform
authority to undertake or perform certain duties or functions
a document granting such authority
  1. a document conferring a rank on an officer
  2. the rank or authority thereby granted
a group of people charged with certain dutiesa commission of inquiry
a government agency or board empowered to exercise administrative, judicial, or legislative authoritySee also Royal Commission
  1. the authority given to a person or organization to act as an agent to a principal in commercial transactions
  2. the fee allotted to an agent for services rendered
the state of being charged with specific duties or responsibilities
the act of committing a sin, crime, etc
something, esp a sin, crime, etc, that is committed
good working condition or (esp of a ship) active service (esp in the phrases in or into commission, out of commission)
US the head of a department of municipal government


(tr) to grant authority to; charge with a duty or task
(tr) military to confer a rank on or authorize an action by
(tr) to equip and test (a ship) for active service
to make or become operative or operablethe plant is due to commission next year
(tr) to place an order for (something)to commission a portrait
Derived Formscommissional or commissionary, adjective

Word Origin for commission

C14: from Old French, from Latin commissiō a bringing together, from committere to commit

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 commissive
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Culture definitions for commissive


A fee paid to a broker or other financial agent for negotiating a sale. The fee is based on a percentage of the sale price.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with commissive


see in commission; on commission; out of commission.

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