Definition of cargo in English:



mass noun
  • Goods carried on a ship, aircraft, or motor vehicle.

    ‘transportation of bulk cargo’
    count noun ‘a cargo of oil’
    • ‘They are usually used to haul heavy loads or carry cargoes.’
    • ‘Georgia is also expanding the dry bulk cargo handling facilities of its Black Sea ports.’
    • ‘Last night, Members of Parliament and shipping experts called for compulsory registration and escorts for ships carrying dangerous cargoes.’
    • ‘In commercial terms however paddle steamers were never to catch on for ocean going cargo carrying.’
    • ‘I was found some bones, possibly part of the frozen meat cargo that she was carrying when she sank.’
    • ‘The cargo was consigned to yet another firm, registered in the British Virgin Islands.’
    • ‘There is much detail on voyages, cargoes carried and the ships themselves.’
    • ‘He wants cargo that will suit the ship or a use that will befit the work that has been carried out.’
    • ‘Usually they're just put off the ship on a lifeboat and the ship and cargo are stolen.’
    • ‘The growth in cargo hauled by trains appears more spectacular than that of passenger movement.’
    • ‘The cargo and livestock vessel Contender has been sold to a shipping company in Dubai.’
    • ‘Because it does not have to carry oxygen tanks, the scramjet could also contain more cargo space.’
    • ‘Many of them were dockers who carried heavy loads of cargo while rushing in a great hurry.’
    • ‘Most of the criminals are not interested in the cargoes ships carry.’
    • ‘Yet cargo boats regularly cut through the Sound of Mull, purely to save time and fuel.’
    • ‘It is very difficult, if not impossible, to compare the rates earned by ships under charter to the Navy Board with those of merchant ships carrying civilian cargoes.’
    • ‘The Panama Canal has fulfilled this function but is now saturated with cargo ships.’
    • ‘The illegal boarding of ships and seizure of cargo has in the past been considered an act of war.’
    • ‘The first van had only just been loaded with its cargo of cash when the robbers struck.’
    • ‘Have you ever noticed how boats look when they are built more for speed than for carrying cargo?’
    freight, load, haul, consignment, delivery, shipment, contents, baggage, burden
    View synonyms


Mid 17th century: from Spanish cargo, carga, from late Latin carricare, carcare ‘to load’, from Latin carrus ‘wheeled vehicle’.