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

  • n. The act or function of directing.
  • n. Management, supervision, or guidance of an action or operation.
  • n. The art or action of musical or theatrical directing.
  • n. Music A word or phrase in a score indicating how a passage is to be played or sung.
  • n. An instruction or series of instructions for doing or finding something. Often used in the plural.
  • n. An authoritative indication; an order or command.
  • n. The distance-independent relationship between two points in space that specifies the angular position of either with respect to the other; the relationship by which the alignment or orientation of any position with respect to any other position is established.
  • n. A position to which motion or another position is referred.
  • n. A line leading to a place or point.
  • n. The line or course along which a person or thing moves.
  • n. The statement in degrees of the angle measured between due north and a given line or course on a compass.
  • n. A course or area of development; a tendency toward a particular end or goal: charting a new direction for the company.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The action of directing; pointing (something) towards.
  • n. Guidance, instruction.
  • n. The work of the director in cinema or theater; the skill of directing a film, play etc.
  • n. An address.
  • n. The path or course of a given movement, or moving body; an indication of the point toward which an object is moving.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The act of directing, of aiming, regulating, guiding, or ordering; guidance; management; superintendence; administration.
  • n. That which is imposed by directing; a guiding or authoritative instruction; prescription; order; command.
  • n. The name and residence of a person to whom any thing is sent, written upon the thing sent; superscription; address.
  • n. The line or course upon which anything is moving or aimed to move, or in which anything is lying or pointing; aim; line or point of tendency; direct line or course.
  • n. The body of managers of a corporation or enterprise; board of directors.
  • n. The pointing of a piece with reference to an imaginary vertical axis; -- distinguished from elevation. The direction is given when the plane of sight passes through the object.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Relative position considered without regard to linear distance.
  • n.
  • n. The act of governing; administration; management; guidance; superintendence: as, the direction of public affairs, of domestic concerns, of a bank, of conscience; to study under the direction of a tutor.
  • n. The act of directing, aiming, pointing, or applying: as, the direction of good works to a good end.
  • n. The end or object toward which something is directed.
  • n. An order; a prescription, either verbal or written; instruction in what manner to proceed.
  • n. In equity pleading, that part of the bill containing the address to the court.
  • n. In music, the act or office of a conductor or director.
  • n. A superscription, as on a letter or package, directing to whom and where it is to be sent; an address.
  • n. A body or board of directors; a directorate.
  • n. In astrology, the difference of right or oblique ascension between the significator and promotor.
  • n. In mech.: The line in which a body moves or tends to proceed, according to the force impressed upon it. Thus, if a body falls freely by gravity, its line of direction is a line perpendicular to the horizon, or one which, if produced, would pass through the earth's center.
  • n. A line drawn from the center of gravity of any body perpendicular to the horizon.
  • n. Synonyms Oversight, government, control.

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

  • n. a line leading to a place or point
  • n. a message describing how something is to be done
  • n. something that provides direction or advice as to a decision or course of action
  • n. the spatial relation between something and the course along which it points or moves
  • n. a general course along which something has a tendency to develop
  • n. a formal statement of a command or injunction to do something
  • n. the concentration of attention or energy on something
  • n. the act of managing something
  • n. the act of setting and holding a course


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

Middle English, arrangement, from Latin dīrēctiō, dīrēctiōn-, from dīrēctus, past participle of dīrigere, to direct; see direct.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Latin dīrēctiō.



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  • Pre-school children were given a test which included this picture, along with the question: "In which direction is this bus traveling — left or right?" Four-year-old children almost always answered "left." When asked, "Why do you think the bus is traveling in the left direction?" they typically answered: "Because you can't see the door." (From ArtLex)

    June 4, 2008