[ dih-rekt, dahy- ]
/ dɪˈrɛkt, daɪ- /
verb (used with object)
to manage or guide by advice, helpful information, instruction, etc.: He directed the company through a difficult time.
to regulate the course of; control: History is directed by a small number of great men and women.
to give authoritative instructions to; command; order or ordain: I directed him to leave the room.
to serve as a director in the production or performance of (a musical work, play, motion picture, etc.).
to guide, tell, or show (a person) the way to a place: I directed him to the post office.
to point, aim, or send toward a place or object: to direct radio waves around the globe.
to channel or focus toward a given result, object, or end (often followed by to or toward): She directed all her energies toward the accomplishment of the work.
to address (words, a speech, a written report, etc.) to a person or persons: The secretary directed his remarks to two of the committee members.
to address (a letter, package, etc.) to an intended recipient.
verb (used without object)
to act as a guide.
to give commands or orders.
to serve as the director of a play, film, orchestra, etc.
proceeding in a straight line or by the shortest course; straight; undeviating; not oblique: a direct route.
proceeding in an unbroken line of descent; lineal rather than collateral: a direct descendant.
- (of a proportion) containing terms of which an increase (or decrease) in one results in an increase (or decrease) in another: a term is said to be in direct proportion to another term if one increases (or decreases) as the other increases (or decreases).
- (of a function) the function itself, in contrast to its inverse.Compare inverse (def. 2).
without intervening persons, influences, factors, etc.; immediate; personal: direct contact with the voters; direct exposure to a disease.
consisting exactly of the words originally used; verbatim: direct quotation.
Government. of or by action of voters, which takes effect without representatives or another intervening agency, as in direct democracy.
allocated for or arising from a particular known agency, process, job, etc.: The new machine was listed by the accountant as a direct cost.
Electricity. of or relating to direct current.
- moving in an orbit in the same direction as the earth in its revolution around the sun.
- appearing to move on the celestial sphere in the direction of the natural order of the signs of the zodiac, from west to east.Compare retrograde (def. 4).
Surveying. (of a telescope) in its normal position; not inverted or transited.
(of dye colors) working without the use of a mordant; substantive.
THIS PSAT VOCABULARY QUIZ IS PERFECT PRACTICE FOR THE REAL TEST
In our third teacher-created PSAT practice test there are new and unique vocabulary terms you may have never heard of! Can you guess what they mean?
Question 1 of 10
Origin of direct
First recorded in 1325–75; Middle English directen (verb) (from Anglo-French ), from Latin dīrēctus, past participle of dīrigere “to align, straighten, guide” (equivalent to dis-, dī- + -rigere, combining form of regere “to guide, rule”); see origin at di-2
synonym study for direct
4. Direct, order, command mean to issue instructions. Direct suggests also giving explanations or advice; the emphasis is not on the authority of the director, but on steps necessary for the accomplishing of a purpose. Order connotes a personal relationship in which one in a superior position imperatively instructs a subordinate to do something. Command, less personal and, often, less specific in detail, suggests greater formality and, sometimes, a more fixed authority on the part of the superior.
OTHER WORDS FROM direct
di·rect·a·ble, adjectivedi·rect·ness, nounpre·di·rect, verb (used with object)self-di·rect·ing, adjective
sem·i·di·rect, adjectivesem·i·di·rect·ness, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021
British Dictionary definitions for direct
/ (dɪˈrɛkt, daɪ-) /
verb (mainly tr)
to regulate, conduct, or control the affairs of
(also intr) to give commands or orders with authority to (a person or group)he directed them to go away
to tell or show (someone) the way to a place
to aim, point, or cause to move towards a goal
to address (a letter, parcel, etc)
to address (remarks, words, etc)to direct comments at someone
(also intr) to provide guidance to (actors, cameramen, etc) in the rehearsal of a play or the filming of a motion picture
- to conduct (a piece of music or musicians), usually while performing oneself
- another word (esp US) for conduct (def. 9)
without delay or evasion; straightforwarda direct approach
without turning aside; uninterrupted; shortest; straighta direct route
without intervening persons or agencies; immediatea direct link
honest; frank; candida direct answer
(usually prenominal) precise; exacta direct quotation
diametricalthe direct opposite
in an unbroken line of descent, as from father to son over succeeding generationsa direct descendant
(of government, decisions, etc) by or from the electorate rather than through representatives
logic maths (of a proof) progressing from the premises to the conclusion, rather than eliminating the possibility of the falsehood of the conclusionCompare indirect proof
astronomy moving from west to east on the celestial sphereCompare retrograde (def. 4a)
- of or relating to direct current
- (of a secondary induced current) having the same direction as the primary current
- (of motion) in the same directionSee motion (def. 9)
- (of an interval or chord) in root position; not inverted
directly; straighthe went direct to the office
Derived forms of directdirectness, noun
Word Origin for direct
C14: from Latin dīrectus; from dīrigere to guide, from dis- apart + regere to rule
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