Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • transitive v. To have charge of; manage.
  • transitive v. To give or apply in a formal way: administer the last rites.
  • transitive v. To apply as a remedy: administer a sedative.
  • transitive v. To direct the taking of (an oath).
  • transitive v. To mete out; dispense: administer justice.
  • transitive v. To manage or dispose of (a trust or estate) under a will or official appointment.
  • transitive v. To impose, offer, or tender (an oath, for example).
  • intransitive v. To manage as an administrator.
  • intransitive v. To minister: administering to their every whim.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To cause to take, either by openly offering or through deceit.
  • v. To apportion out, as in administering justice.
  • v. To manage or supervise the conduct, performance or execution of; to govern or regulate the parameters for the conduct, performance or execution of; to work in an administrative capacity.
  • v. To minister to, as in administering to the sick.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Administrator.
  • intransitive v. To contribute; to bring aid or supplies; to conduce; to minister.
  • intransitive v. To perform the office of administrator; to act officially.
  • transitive v. To manage or conduct, as public affairs; to direct or superintend the execution, application, or conduct of.
  • transitive v. To dispense; to serve out; to supply; execute.
  • transitive v. To apply, as medicine or a remedy; to give, as a dose or something beneficial or suitable. Extended to a blow, a reproof, etc.
  • transitive v. To tender, as an oath.
  • transitive v. To settle, as the estate of one who dies without a will, or whose will fails of an executor.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To manage or conduct as minister, chief agent, or steward; super-intend the management or execution of; control or regulate in behalf of others: as, to administer the laws or the government, or a department of government; to administer a charitable trust, the affairs of a corporation, or the estate of a bankrupt.
  • To afford; supply; dispense; bring into use or operation, especially in the execution of a magisterial or sacerdotal office: as, to administer relief; to administer justice.
  • To give or apply; make application of: as, to administer medicine, punishment, counsel, etc.
  • To tender or impose, as an oath.
  • In law, to manage or dispose of, as the estate of a deceased person, in the capacity either of executor or administrator. See administration, 9.
  • To contribute assistance; bring aid or supplies; add something: with to: as, to administer to the necessities of the poor.
  • To perform the office of administrator: with upon: as, A administers upon the estate of B.
  • n. One who administers; a minister or an administrator.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. administer or bestow, as in small portions
  • v. give or apply (medications)
  • v. perform (a church sacrament) ritually
  • v. work in an administrative capacity; supervise or be in charge of
  • v. direct the taking of

Etymologies

Middle English administren, from Old French administrer, from Latin administrāre : ad, ad- + ministrāre, to manage (from minister, ministr-, servant; see minister).
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English admynistren, from Old French aminister, from Latin administrare ("to manage, execute"), from ad ("to") + ministrare ("to attend, serve"), from minister ("servant"); see minister. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Some of his relations died and left a lot of money, so folks tell, and George is what they call administer of the estate.

    Fair Harbor

  • Augustana's 2006 NSSE scores for student-faculty interaction were below the average benchmark for first-year students attending similar institutions, but Abernathy hopes that the needle will move next year, when the campus will again administer the survey.

    Illinois college's faculty rethink how they teach

  • Polly's health, and that I look to her to help me get settled without overstrain to my wife -- in short, administer a dose of duty, and she may see her way to coming.

    Ainslee's, Vol. 15, No. 5, June 1905

  • And I think, as parents, one of the things that we have to administer is tough love.

    CNN Transcript Sep 22, 2007

  • Furthermore, we need a tax system which is not difficult to comply with or administer, which is regarded as fair, and which limits opportunities to divert income and reduce tax liabilities.

    National Business Review (NBR) New Zealand

  • If half-baked political theories and weaving a movement from nothing inspire people to seek to administer, that is fine ... but we are not looking for a guru.

    Gen X at 40

  • Turned down the ultimatum from "The Anglican Communion" that a committee of bishops from abroad must come to the U.S. and "administer" on behalf of the anti-gay conservatives.

    Gail Godwin's 'Solo Notes' Journal: Narrative Magazine's Friday Feature

  • Doctors' ethics prohibit them from taking part in an execution, so the prison must ask one of its employees to mix up the drugs, and then "administer" them.

    John Duty: human guinea pig in Oklahoma's cruel experiment

  • I have not taught enough to be any kind of administer in education and for the record, have absolutely no interest in ever becoming administer, but I have taught more than the current Secretary of Education.

    Acorns and oak trees and Arne Duncan

  • CASAREZ: ... that the doctor administered a powerful drug, what does that, as a buzzword, "administer," say to you?

    CNN Transcript Jul 27, 2009

Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.