[ur-juh nt]


compelling or requiring immediate action or attention; imperative; pressing: an urgent matter.
insistent or earnest in solicitation; importunate, as a person: an urgent pleader.
expressed with insistence, as requests or appeals: an urgent tone of voice.

Origin of urgent

1490–1500; < Latin urgent- (stem of urgēns), present participle of urgēre to urge; see -ent
Related formsur·gent·ly, adverbnon·ur·gent, adjectivenon·ur·gent·ly, adverbsu·per·ur·gent, adjectivesu·per·ur·gent·ly, adverbun·ur·gent, adjectiveun·ur·gent·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for urgent

Contemporary Examples of urgent

Historical Examples of urgent

  • No doubt he told us both that he had received an urgent telegram.

    It Happened in Egypt

    C. N. Williamson

  • It was another two hours' leave of absence she asked for "on urgent business."

    Good Indian

    B. M. Bower

  • An attach from the French Embassy was waiting to speak to me on urgent business.

    My Double Life

    Sarah Bernhardt

  • The rapid increase of the business created an urgent demand for barrels.

  • But my most urgent task was speedily to make way with the incriminating corpse.

British Dictionary definitions for urgent



requiring or compelling speedy action or attentionthe matter is urgent; an urgent message
earnest and persistent
Derived Formsurgency (ˈɜːdʒənsɪ), nounurgently, adverb

Word Origin for urgent

C15: via French from Latin urgent-, urgens, present participle of urgēre to urge
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 urgent

mid-15c., from Middle French urgent "pressing, impelling" (14c.), from Latin urgentem (nominative urgens), present participle of urgere "to press hard, urge" (see urge (v.)). Related: Urgently.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper