American English

Definition of order verb from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



    Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they order
    he / she / it orders
    past simple ordered
    -ing form ordering
    jump to other results
    give instructions
  1. 1[transitive] to use your position of authority to tell someone to do something or say that something must happen order somebody to do something The company was ordered to pay compensation to its former employees. The officer ordered them to fire. order somebody + adv./prep. They were ordered out of the class for fighting. order something The federal government has ordered an investigation into the accident. The judge ordered a retrial. order that… They ordered that for every tree cut down two more be planted. order (somebody) + speech “Sit down and be quiet,” she ordered.
  2. goods/service
  3. 2[transitive] to ask for goods to be made or supplied; to ask for a service to be provided order something (from somebody) These boots can be ordered direct from the manufacturer. order somebody something Should I order you a limo? order something for somebody Should I order a limo for you? see also mail order
  4. food/drink
  5. 3[transitive, intransitive] to ask for something to eat or drink in a restaurant, bar, etc. order (something) I ordered a beer and a sandwich. Have you ordered yet? order somebody/yourself something He ordered himself a double whiskey. order (something) (for somebody) Will you order for me while I make a phone call?
  6. organize/arrange
  7. 4[transitive] order something (formal) to organize or arrange something I need time to order my thoughts see also disordered, ordered
  8. Thesaurusordertell instruct direct commandThese words all mean to use your position of authority to say to someone that they must do something.order to use your position of authority to tell someone to do something:The company was ordered to clean up the pollution in the river. “Come here at once!” she ordered.tell to say to someone that they must or should do something:He was told to sit down and wait. Don't tell me what to do!instruct (somewhat formal) to tell someone to do something, especially in a formal or official way:The letter instructed him to report to headquarters (formal) to give an official order:The police officer directed me to pull over and stop the car.command to use your position of authority to tell someone to do something:He commanded his men to retreat.order or command?Order is a more general word than command and can be used about anyone in a position of authority, such as a parent, teacher, or government, telling someone to do something. Command is slightly stronger than order and is the normal word to use about an army officer giving orders, or in any context where it is normal to give orders without any discussion about them. It is less likely to be used about a parent or teacher.Patterns to order/tell/instruct/direct/command somebody to do something to order/instruct/direct/command that… to do something >as>ordered/told/instructed/directed/commandedIdioms
    just what the doctor ordered (humorous)
    jump to other results
    exactly what someone wants or needs
    Phrasal Verbsorder somebody around
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: order