verb (used with object)

  1. to put (thought) into words; utter or state: to express an idea clearly.
  2. to show, manifest, or reveal: to express one’s anger.
  3. to set forth the opinions, feelings, etc., of (oneself), as in speaking, writing, or painting: He can express himself eloquently.
  4. to represent by a symbol, character, figure, or formula: to express water as H2O; to express unknown quantities algebraically.
  5. to send by express: to express a package or merchandise.
  6. to press or squeeze out: to express the juice of grapes.
  7. to exude or emit (a liquid, odor, etc.), as if under pressure: The roses expressed a sweet perfume.
  8. Genetics. (of a gene) to be active in the production of (a protein or a phenotype).


  1. clearly indicated; distinctly stated; definite; explicit; plain: He defied my express command.
  2. special; definite: We have an express purpose in being here.
  3. direct or fast, especially making few or no intermediate stops: an express train; an express elevator.
  4. used for direct or high-speed travel: an express highway.
  5. duly or exactly formed or represented: an express image.
  6. pertaining to an express: an express agency.


  1. an express train, bus, elevator, etc.
  2. a system or method of sending freight, parcels, money, etc., that is faster and safer, but more expensive, than ordinary freight service: We agree to send the package by express.
  3. a company engaged in this business.
  4. British. a messenger or a message specially sent.
  5. something sent by express.


  1. by express: to travel express.
  2. Obsolete. expressly.

verb (tr)

  1. to transform (ideas) into words; utter; verbalize
  2. to show or reveal; indicatetears express grief
  3. to communicate (emotion, etc) without words, as through music, painting, etc
  4. to indicate through a symbol, formula, etc
  5. to force or squeeze outto express the juice from an orange
  6. to send by rapid transport or special messenger
  7. express oneself to communicate one’s thoughts or ideas

adjective (prenominal)

  1. clearly indicated or shown; explicitly statedan express wish
  2. done or planned for a definite reason or goal; particularan express purpose
  3. of, concerned with, or designed for rapid transportation of people, merchandise, mail, money, etcexpress delivery; an express depot


    1. a system for sending merchandise, mail, money, etc, rapidly
    2. merchandise, mail, etc, conveyed by such a system
    3. mainly US and Canadianan enterprise operating such a system
  1. Also called: express train a fast train stopping at none or only a few of the intermediate stations between its two termini
  2. See express rifle


  1. by means of a special delivery or express deliveryit went express

late 14c., from Old French espresser “press, squeeze out; speak one’s mind” (Modern French exprimer), Medieval Latin expressare, frequentative of exprimere “represent, describe,” literally “to press out” (source of Italian espresso; the sense evolution here is perhaps via an intermediary sense of something like “clay that takes under pressure takes the form of an image”), from ex- “out” (see ex-) + pressare “to press, push,” from Latin premere (see press (v.1)). Related: Expressed; expresses; expressing.


late 14c., from Old French expres, from Latin expressus “clearly presented,” past participle of exprimere (see express (v.)). This led to the noun (first attested 1610s) meaning “special messenger.” Sense of “business or system for sending money or parcels” is 1794. An express train (1841) originally ran to a certain station.


  1. To press or squeeze out.
  2. To produce a phenotype. Used of a gene.
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