Definitions

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

  • n. A representative of a government who is sent on a special diplomatic mission.
  • n. A minister plenipotentiary assigned to a foreign embassy, ranking next below the ambassador.
  • n. A messenger; an agent.
  • n. A short closing stanza in certain verse forms, such as the ballade or sestina, dedicating the poem to a patron or summarizing its main ideas.
  • n. The concluding portion of a prose work or a play.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. representative
  • n. diplomat
  • n. messenger
  • n. a short stanza at the end of a poem

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. One dispatched upon an errand or mission; a messenger; esp., a person deputed by a sovereign or a government to negotiate a treaty, or transact other business, with a foreign sovereign or government; a minister accredited to a foreign government. An envoy's rank is below that of an ambassador.
  • n. An explanatory or commendatory postscript to a poem, essay, or book; -- also in the French from, l'envoi.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To send.
  • n. Formerly, and sometimes still archaically, a postscript to a composition, particularly a ballade or other sentimental poem, to enforce or recommend it.
  • n. Figuratively, termination; end.
  • n. One despatched upon an errand or a mission; a messenger; specifically, a person deputed by a ruler or government to negotiate a treaty, or transact other business, with a foreign ruler or government.
  • n. Synonyms See ambassador, 1.

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

  • n. a diplomat having less authority than an ambassador
  • n. a brief stanza concluding certain forms of poetry
  • n. someone sent on a mission to represent the interests of someone else

Etymologies

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

French envoyé, messenger, from past participle of envoyer, to send, from Old French envoier, from Late Latin inviāre, to be on the way : Latin in-, in, on; see en-1 + Latin via, way; see wegh- in Indo-European roots.
Middle English envoie, from Old French, a sending away, conclusion, from envoier, to send; see envoy1.

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