Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Word of the day: consign

The word of the day is consign:
  1. to hand over or deliver formally or officially; commit (often followed by to).
  2. to transfer to another's custody or charge; entrust.
  3. to set apart for or devote to (a special purpose or use): to consign two afternoons a week to the club.
  4. to banish or set apart in one's mind; relegate: to consign unpleasant thoughts to oblivion.
  5. Commerce.
    1. to ship, as by common carrier, especially for sale or custody.
    2. to address for such shipment.
  6. Obsolete. to confirm or ratify, as with a seal or other token.
c.1430, from M.Fr. consigner, from L. consignare "to seal, register," originally "to mark with a sign," from com- "together" + signare "to sign, mark," from signum "sign." Originally "to ratify by a sign or seal;" commercial sense is from 1650s. 

"In addition to signing an exclusive mining concession with Elías, Peru had awarded a monopoly on shipping guano internationally to a company in Liverpool.  With demand outstripping supply, Peru and its British consignees were able to charge high prices."

 - Charles Mann, 1493: Uncovering the New World Columbus Created

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