verb (used with object), com·mut·ed, com·mut·ing.

verb (used without object), com·mut·ed, com·mut·ing.


a trip made by commuting: It's a long commute from his home to his office.
an act or instance of commuting.

Origin of commute

1400–50; 1885–90 for def 5; late Middle English < Latin commūtāre to change, replace, exchange, equivalent to com- com- + mūtāre to change
Related formsun·com·mut·ed, adjective
Can be confusedcommute forgive pardon (see synonym study at pardon) Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for commuted

Contemporary Examples of commuted

Historical Examples of commuted

  • His sentence to be shot was commuted to imprisonment for life.

    Roland Cashel

    Charles James Lever

  • The sentence was, however, commuted to transportation for life.

    Old Times at Otterbourne

    Charlotte M. Yonge

  • On other estates the serfs' compulsory labor was commuted for a quitrent.

    War and Peace

    Leo Tolstoy

  • Then, will you give me a paper stating that his sentence is commuted?

    Roger Willoughby

    William H. G. Kingston

  • His sentence was, however, commuted by the Governor to imprisonment for life.

    Venus in Boston;

    George Thompson

British Dictionary definitions for commuted



(intr) to travel some distance regularly between one's home and one's place of work
(tr) to substitute; exchange
(tr) law to reduce (a sentence) to one less severe
to pay (an annuity) at one time, esp with a discount, instead of in instalments
(tr) to transform; changeto commute base metal into gold
(intr) to act as or be a substitute
(intr) to make a substitution; change


a journey made by commuting
Derived Formscommutable, adjectivecommutability or commutableness, noun

Word Origin for commute

C17: from Latin commutāre to replace, from com- mutually + mutāre to change
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 commuted



mid-15c., "to change, transform," from Latin commutare "to often change, to change altogether," from com-, intensive prefix (see com-), + mutare "to change" (see mutable). Sense of "make less severe" is 1630s. Sense of "go back and forth to work" is 1889, from commutation ticket "season pass" (on a railroad, streetcar line, etc.), from commute in its sense of "to change one kind of payment into another" (1795), especially "to combine a number of payments into a single one." Related: Commuted; commuting.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

commuted in Science



To yield the same result regardless of order. For example, numbers commute under addition, which is a commutative operation. Generally, any two operators H and G commute if their commutator is zero, i.e. HG - GH = 0.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.