[ dih-spen-ser ]
/ dɪˈspɛn sər /


a person or thing that dispenses.
a container, package, device, or vending machine for holding and dispensing something in small amounts, as facial tissue, paper cups, or candy.

Nearby words

  1. dispensationalism,
  2. dispensator,
  3. dispensatory,
  4. dispense,
  5. dispense with,
  6. dispensible,
  7. dispensing optician,
  8. dispeople,
  9. dispermous,
  10. dispermy

Origin of dispenser

Middle English word dating back to 1250–1300; see origin at dispense, -er1

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

Examples from the Web for dispenser

British Dictionary definitions for dispenser


/ (dɪˈspɛnsə) /


a device, such as a vending machine, that automatically dispenses a single item or a measured quantity
a person or thing that dispenses
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 dispenser



c.1400, "one who administers" (a household, etc.), c.1200 in surnames, from Anglo-French dispensour, Old French despenseor, from Latin dispensatorem, agent noun from dispensare (see dispense). Meaning "a container that dispenses in fixed measure" is from 1918.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper