verb (used with object)
- in service.
- in operating order: A great deal of work will be necessary to put this car in commission again.
- Also into commission.Navy.(of a ship) manned and in condition for or ordered to active service.
- not in service: Telephone lines were out of commission for several days after the storm.
- not in operating order: Sorry, but I can't bake cupcakes for you while the stove is out of commission.
Origin of commission
- a document conferring a rank on an officer
- the rank or authority thereby granted
- the authority given to a person or organization to act as an agent to a principal in commercial transactions
- the fee allotted to an agent for services rendered
Word Origin for commission
mid-14c., "authority entrusted to someone," from Latin commissionem (nominative commissio) "delegation of business," noun of action from past participle stem of committere (see commit). Meaning "body of persons charged with authority" is from late 15c.
1660s, from commission (n.). Related: Commissioned; commissioning.
A fee paid to a broker or other financial agent for negotiating a sale. The fee is based on a percentage of the sale price.
out of commission
Not in working order, unable to function. For example, The drawbridge is out of commission so we'll have to take the tunnel. This idiom originally referred to a ship that was laid up for repairs or held in reserve. Similarly, the antonym, in commission, referred to a ship armed and ready for action. The latter term is also used in more general contexts today, as in My car's back in commission now, so we can drive to the theater. [Late 1800s]
see in commission; on commission; out of commission.