American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- v. To drive off or scatter in different directions: The police dispersed the crowd.
- v. To strew or distribute widely: The airplane dispersed the leaflets over the city.
- v. To cause to vanish or disappear. See Synonyms at scatter.
- v. To disseminate (knowledge, for example).
- v. To separate (light) into spectral rays.
- v. To distribute (particles) evenly throughout a medium.
- v. To separate and move in different directions; scatter: The crowd dispersed once the concert ended.
- v. To break up and vanish; dissipate: The storm clouds had dispersed by noon.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- To scatter; separate and send off or drive in different directions; cause to separate in. different directions: as, to disperse a crowd.
- To distribute; dispense.
- To diffuse; spread.
- To make known; publish.
- To dissipate; cause to vanish: as, the fog is dispersed.
- Synonyms and
- Dispel, Scatter, etc. See dissipate.
- To distribute, deal ont, disseminate, sow broadcast.
- To separate and move apart in different directions without order or regularity; become scattered: as, the company dispersed at 10 o'clock.
- To become diffused or spread; spread.
- To vanish by diffusion; be scattered out of sight.
- Scattered; dispersed.
- n. One who or that which disperses: as, a disperser of libels.
- In optics, to refract by amounts which vary with the wave-length of the refracted ray; separate a composite beam of light, into its components, forming a spectrum. See dispersion, 3.
- v. transitive, intransitive To scatter in different directions
- v. transitive, intransitive To break up and disappear; to dissipate
- v. transitive, intransitive To disseminate
- v. physics, transitive, intransitive To separate rays of light etc. according to wavelength; to refract
- v. transitive, intransitive To distribute throughout
GNU Webster's 1913
- v. To scatter abroad; to drive to different parts; to distribute; to diffuse; to spread.
- v. To scatter, so as to cause to vanish; to dissipate.
- v. To separate; to go or move into different parts; to vanish
- v. To distribute wealth; to share one's abundance with others.
- v. separate (light) into spectral rays
- v. cause to separate
- v. cause to become widely known
- v. distribute loosely
- v. to cause to separate and go in different directions
- v. move away from each other
- From French disperser, from Latin dispersus, past participle of dispergere ("to scatter abroad, disperse"), from dis- ("apart") + spargere ("to scatter"); see sparse. (Wiktionary)
- Middle English dispersen, from Old French disperser, from Latin dispergere, dispers-, to disperse : dis-, apart; see dis- + spargere, to scatter. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“They include Brenna Bell, an Oregon-based attorney with the National Lawyers Guild, who claims she was arrested while trying to obey police orders to disperse from a peaceful demonstration.”
“With the last investigation, however, we have gone beyond the field of actual colloid chemistry, although the solution of a radioactive substance, e.g. polonium chloride, can naturally be called a disperse system, though more accurately it is molecular-disperse because the substance dissolved in the solvent occurs here as molecules, not as molecular aggregates, as is the case in a colloidal solution.”
“London cops have been given the power to "disperse" anyone under 16, gathered in groups of two or more, from almost all of central London, after 9PM.”
“As the science journal Nature reported, "they help large globs of oil 'disperse' into smaller pieces -- hence their name -- which are easier for sea-living microbes to break down.”
“A large number of people started to kind of disperse, but there are many people here -- thousands of people, still standing around playing music, chanting, making their voices heard.”
“The note of war has been sounded, and in the imperial proclamation, recently issued, the people of the Confederate States and all who sympathize with them are treated as rebels, and twenty days is allowed them to "disperse" and return to their allegiance to the authorities at Washington.”
“BP dumps over a million gallons of toxic old stocks of Corexit 9527A & 9500 into the Gulf to "disperse" the oil.”
“But that's only the tip of the iceberg: You need to take a look at the underwater impact of the oil geyser and the dangerous chemicals BP is using to "disperse" it - effects that could last for decades, even if the risky "Top Kill" maneuver to plug the well works.”
“Though BP should have to pay for the loses they have created,,, there is no authority for Obama to tell them to put money in this fund for someone of their choosing to 'disperse'.”
“Allowing, hoping and maybe even praying it would "disperse" deep under the surface, either way hidden from the prying eyes of media and humanity; thus, achieving the corporate directive and saving the company billions in penalties based on flow rates and environmental damage.”
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