[ik-spahyuh r]
verb (used without object), ex·pired, ex·pir·ing.
  1. to come to an end; terminate, as a contract, guarantee, or offer.
  2. to emit the last breath; die.
  3. to breathe out.
  4. to die out, as a fire.
verb (used with object), ex·pired, ex·pir·ing.
  1. to breathe out; emit (air) from the lungs.
  2. Archaic. to give off, emit, or eject.

Origin of expire

1375–1425; late Middle English < Latin ex(s)pīrāre to breathe out, equivalent to ex- ex-1 + spīrāre to breathe
Related formsex·pir·er, nounex·pir·ing·ly, adverbnon·ex·pir·ing, adjectiveun·ex·pired, adjectiveun·ex·pir·ing, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for expiring


  1. (intr) to finish or run out; cease; come to an end
  2. to breathe out (air); exhale
  3. (intr) to die
Derived Formsexpirer, noun

Word Origin for expire

C15: from Old French expirer, from Latin exspīrāre to breathe out, from spīrāre to breathe
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 expiring



c.1400, "to die," from Middle French expirer (12c.) "expire, elapse," from Latin expirare/exspirare "breathe out, breathe one's last, die," from ex- "out" (see ex-) + spirare "to breathe" (see spirit). "Die" is the older sense in English; that of "breathe out" is first attested 1580s. Of laws, patents, treaties, etc., mid-15c. Related: Expired; expiring.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

expiring in Medicine


  1. To breathe one's last breath; die.
  2. To exhale.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.