discharge Meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary Cambridge dictionaries logo

Meaning of “discharge” in the English Dictionary

"discharge" in British English

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uk   /dɪsˈtʃɑːdʒ/  us   /-ˈtʃɑːrdʒ/
  • discharge verb (ALLOW TO LEAVE)

[T] to ​allow someone ​officially to ​leavesomewhere, ​especially a ​hospital or a ​lawcourt: Patients were discharged from the ​hospital because the ​beds were ​needed by other ​people. More than ​half of all ​prisoners discharged are reconvicted within two ​years.UK A ​peaceprotester was conditionally discharged for twelve ​months (= ​allowed to go ​free only if they do not ​commit a ​crime again for this ​period of ​time).
  • discharge verb (PERFORM)

[T] formal to ​perform a ​task, ​especially an ​official one: The ​city must discharge ​itslegal duty to ​house the ​homeless.discharge a debt formal to ​pay back a ​debtcompletely


uk   /ˈdɪs.tʃɑːdʒ/  us   /-tʃɑːrdʒ/
  • discharge noun (PERMISSION TO LEAVE)

[C or U] officialpermission to ​leave the ​armedforces, a ​prison, or a ​hospital: The ​soldier received a dishonourable discharge for a ​disciplinaryoffence.UK The ​judge gave him a one-year conditional discharge.
  • discharge noun (SUBSTANCE)

[C or U] the ​act of ​sending out ​wasteliquid or ​gas: Thousands of ​fish were ​killed as a ​result of a discharge ofpoisonouschemicals from a ​nearbyfactory. [C or U] liquidmatter that comes from a ​part of the ​body and is often ​infected: a ​vaginal discharge
(Definition of discharge from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"discharge" in American English

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 us   /dɪsˈtʃɑrdʒ, ˈdɪs·tʃɑrdʒ/
  • discharge verb (ALLOW TO LEAVE)

[T] to ​allow someone to ​leave: Allen was discharged from the ​hospitalyesterday. [T] Someone who is discharged from a ​job is ​asked to ​leave it.
  • discharge verb (SEND OUT)

[I/T] to ​send out a ​substance, esp. ​wastematter: [I] The ​soapywater from the ​washingmachine will discharge ​directly into the ​wasteline.
  • discharge verb (SHOOT)

[I/T] to ​shoot a ​gun: [I] A ​gunaccidentally discharged.
  • discharge verb (PERFORM)

[T] fml to ​perform a duty, esp. an ​official one: He ​continued to discharge his duties as ​administrator of the ​fund.

dischargenoun [C/U]

 us   /ˈdɪs·tʃɑrdʒ/
  • discharge noun [C/U] (LEAVING )

the ​act of ​asking or ​allowing someone to ​leave a ​place, esp. a ​job: [C] McCarthy ​held the ​rank of ​captain at the ​time of his discharge from the ​army.
  • discharge noun [C/U] (LIQUID)

the ​act of ​sending a ​liquid or ​gas out of something, or the ​substance that comes out: [C] an ​oily discharge A discharge is also ​liquidmatter that comes from a ​part of the ​body.
(Definition of discharge from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"discharge" in Business English

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uk   us   /dɪsˈtʃɑːdʒ/
[T] to give someone an ​officialorder or ​legalpermission to end their ​duty in the army, a ​court, a prison, etc.: The ​judge discharged the ​jury and ​ordered a ​retrial. He was honourably discharged from the Army three ​years ago.
[T] HR if a ​company or ​organization discharges an ​employee, it makes them ​leave their ​job: discharge sb for sth Several of the ​directors were later discharged for ​mismanagingshareholderfunds.
[T] LAW, FINANCE to give a ​bankruptpersonlegalpermission to ​stopowing a particular ​debt: discharge a bankrupt First-time ​bankrupts are typically discharged ​automatically after 12 months.discharge a debt Bankruptcy ​laws generally won't ​letpeople discharge their ​studentloandebt.
[T] FINANCE to ​pay the ​totalamountowed for a ​debt, ​loan, ​payment, etc.: The ​company continues to discharge its ​loanrepaymentobligations in ​time.
[T] to do an ​officialtask or ​duty: discharge a ​duty/​responsibility/​obligation
[I or T] ENVIRONMENT if a ​business or ​factory discharges ​gas, ​chemicals, ​liquidwaste, etc., it ​sends these substances into the ​air or water: Companies must be ​issued a ​permit from the EPA before they are ​allowed to discharge.discharge sth into sth The mine has a ​federalpermit to discharge mine wastewater into the river.
[I or T] TRANSPORT to take ​goods off a ​ship or ​plane or to ​allowpassengers to get off: It took a whole day to discharge the ​ship.


uk   us   /ˈdɪstʃɑːdʒ/
[C] FINANCE the end of a ​debt, or an ​officialorder that ​ends someone’s ​duty to ​pay a ​debt: Bankrupts must undergo ​creditcounselling before receiving a discharge of their ​debts. loan discharges and ​cancellations
[C or U] ENVIRONMENT a ​waste substance that is ​sent into the ​air or water from a ​factory or ​business: $1 ​billion was ​spent to ​reduce the plant’s mercury discharge.
[U] formal HR an ​officialorder that ​ends someone’s ​job: He ​sued the ​company for wrongful discharge.
[C or U] an ​officialorder or ​legalpermission to ​leave your ​duty in the army, a ​court, a prison, etc.: honourable/dishonourable discharge If convicted, his sentence will ​include a ​reduction in ​rank to ​private and a dishonourable discharge.
[U] formal the ​act of doing a ​task or ​duty that you must do: discharge of duties/responsibilities Employees ​found to have ​committed any ​breaches in the discharge of their ​duties will be ​reprimanded.
[U] TRANSPORT the ​job or ​activity of getting ​goods or ​passengers off a ​ship or ​plane: The west ​docks are used for the ​loading and discharge of ​cargo.
(Definition of discharge from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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