- to divide and give out in shares; deal out; allot.
- to disperse through a space or over an area; spread; scatter.
- to promote, sell, and ship or deliver (an item or line of merchandise) to individual customers, especially in a specified region or area.
- to pass out or deliver (mail, newspapers, etc.) to intended recipients.
- to divide into distinct phases: The process was distributed into three stages.
- to divide into classes: These plants are distributed into 22 classes.
- Logic. to employ (a term) in a proposition so as to refer to all individuals denoted by the term.
- Physical Chemistry. to dissolve uniformly in a solvent consisting of layers of immiscible or partially miscible substances.
- to roll out (ink) on the table to attain the proper consistency.
- to return (type) to the proper place after printing.
Origin of distribute
SynonymsSee more synonyms for distribute on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for distributing
And in many cases al-Shabab insisted on distributing the aid, keeping much of it for itself, according to ODI.U.S. Humanitarian Aid Going to ISIS
October 20, 2014
Africans are on the front lines of humanitarian efforts, distributing life-saving aid in dangerous environments.Why the US-Africa Summit Was Important and Why It Wasn't Enough
August 9, 2014
Sewage pipes burst on the 7th floor of the building, distributing a strong, rotten smell that seemed to match the mood.The Rot Among the Rebels in Ukraine
May 31, 2014
The filmmakers, on their part, have accused Bergé of distributing letters to parties associated with the film to try to stop it.Unauthorized ‘Saint Laurent’ Biopic: Quel Scandale!
May 20, 2014
He has spent the past three years working on Real Life, his first feature film which Paramount is distributing.The Stacks: The Inimitable Albert Brooks Caught at the Dawn of His Movie Career
April 13, 2014
And who could be more just than he in distributing the luscious prize?Ranald Bannerman's Boyhood
She splashes her sex about as if she were distributing handbills.Changing Winds
St. John G. Ervine
Such a condition unsettling the distributing markets, would be intolerable.The Fabric of Civilization
The records of every distributing station were constantly checked by the Americans.Herbert Hoover
And his stewards fell to distributing the stores at once, and serving up a banquet.Cyropaedia
- to give out in shares; dispense
- to hand out or deliverto distribute handbills
- (often passive) to spread throughout a space or areagulls are distributed along the west coast
- (often passive) to divide into classes or categories; classifythese books are distributed in four main categories
- printing to return (used type) to the correct positions in the type case
- logic to incorporate in a distributed term of a categorial proposition
- maths logic to expand an expression containing two operators in such a way that the precedence of the operators is changed; for example, distributing multiplication over addition in a (b + c) yields ab + ac
- obsolete to dispense (justice)
Word Origin and History for distributing
early 15c., "to deal out or apportion," from Latin distributus, past participle of distribuere "to divide, distribute" (see distribution). Related: Distributable; distributed; distributing.