Definition of execute in English:



[with object]
  • 1Put (a plan, order, or course of action) into effect.

    ‘the corporation executed a series of financial deals’
    • ‘Every decision we make seeks to provide soldiers what they need to successfully execute the missions that we assign them.’
    • ‘Corruption arises primarily through the manipulations of middlemen and contractors who are used to execute these works.’
    • ‘Colonel Casper's staff, aviators, and soldiers executed this mission with great professionalism.’
    • ‘Rural road works are executed by a number of agencies in India with a multiplicity of objectives.’
    • ‘Well, in this league, the players can only suggest and we go out and try to execute the game plan from the coaching staff.’
    • ‘Was he being richly rewarded for having faithfully executed what he was told to do?’
    • ‘"This was a carefully co-ordinated operation which was executed successfully, " he said.’
    • ‘Their orders: to start executing the plan the day the deal closes.’
    • ‘Emergency procedures should be executed in a timely manner, consistent with the nature of the emergency.’
    • ‘That is why I had to devise all sorts of procedural and data checks to make sure that the work was executed correctly.’
    • ‘According to O'Brien, UW's defensively-heavy game plan was executed to perfection in the opening portion of the game.’
    • ‘A transactional leader is one who can plan and execute an implementation strategy with precision.’
    • ‘Parsons has also demonstrated vision and can effectively communicate and execute strategic plans.’
    • ‘How well your startup or small business does has as much to do with your big idea as it does with the tools used to plan and execute your strategy.’
    • ‘You are the ones to come up with the brightest ideas and physical energy to execute the hard work necessary to build our country.’
    • ‘Corporate PR pros helped plan and execute the strategy.’
    • ‘We must, therefore, commend the security forces for the way they executed the plans put in place by their superior officers.’
    • ‘Keeping the enemy on his toes deters and interdicts his ability to effectively execute the chosen course of action.’
    • ‘You've got to give them the big picture, get them to believe in the team philosophy, and then execute the plan to achieve the results, which is winning.’
    • ‘Thankfully my plan was executed to perfection.’
    carry out, accomplish, perform, implement, effect, bring off, bring about, achieve, carry off, carry through, complete, enact, enforce, put into effect, put into practice, do, discharge, prosecute, engineer, administer, attain, realize, fulfil
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    1. 1.1 Produce (a work of art)
      ‘not only does she execute embroideries, she designs them too’
      • ‘These works were executed in the later 1660s, in plenty of time for Van der Meulen to put them into his background.’
      • ‘Associations aside, the works are deftly executed, marvelously obsessive gems.’
      • ‘The work was executed by the Piccirilli Brothers, the leading firm of carvers in New York City.’
      • ‘His work is generally executed in a graceful and delicate style, with freely flowing forms and considerable sensitivity in the handling of subject matter and material.’
      • ‘In rock art, it is characteristic for the artist to chose to execute the work irrespective of the rock curvature or characteristics.’
      • ‘Balka's art - introspective and executed with a minimalist austerity - continues to attract viewers.’
      • ‘The final section of this exhibition is devoted to works executed by artists after they had left Rome and the Villa Medici.’
      • ‘The photographer has executed the work with a detachment that is almost cruel.’
      • ‘It seems reasonable to suppose that the work was mostly executed around 1560, but that Titian added the foliage in the upper third immediately prior to its delivery to Philip II in Spain.’
      • ‘Citing Bauhaus influence, especially the paintings of Josef Albers, she executed her works by hand with painstaking precision.’
      • ‘The work is flawlessly executed and represents one of the finest examples of the metalsmith's art.’
      • ‘These works were executed in tiny brushstrokes, reducing the presence of the artist's hand and enhancing the illusion that the viewer was staring at a real scene.’
      • ‘Although he prepared and executed his works painstakingly like the old masters, he wanted his works of art look like machine made.’
      • ‘The idea was that craftsmen designed and executed their own work alongside artists such as Ford Maddox-Brown, to produce useful and decorative objects.’
      • ‘All paintings are executed using quality handmade oil paints from Germany and Italy on fine Belgian canvas.’
      • ‘Conceptual innovators, like the cubists, made quick breakthroughs that revolutionized both the way art was executed and the way it was interpreted.’
      • ‘All the paintings were beautifully executed with great attention to detail.’
      • ‘This work was executed by painting the canvas the texture of wood, so that the figure seems like a sculpture.’
      • ‘His genre paintings were executed at the very outset of his career in the early 1580s.’
      • ‘His passion is for boats, in particular traditional barges on the Thames, and his works are executed in watercolour and pen and ink.’
      paint, draw, depict, portray, represent, reproduce
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    2. 1.2 Perform (a skilful action or manoeuvre)
      ‘they had to execute their dance steps with the greatest precision’
      • ‘When airborne and safely isolated from other traffic, he'd let me take the stick and execute cautious dives, climbs, and turns.’
      • ‘After executing the movement, lower the bar back slowly to the original position.’
      • ‘This was intense - the dancers working so hard that sweat was flying from them as they executed turns.’
      • ‘Occasionally, executing a standard manoeuvre such as a left turn would cause your car to shut down and refuse to restart, in which case you would need to reinstall the engine.’
      • ‘This third try was symptomatic of a day of off-load practice for Bradford as they were given maximum time and space to execute their manoeuvres.’
      • ‘Usually performed by small groups of competing dancers, this segment is performed by a large group of dancers executing the steps in perfect syncopation.’
      • ‘We turned around and executed an emergency descent to 10,000 feet.’
      • ‘To make the change, you have to forget about where the ball is going and totally focus on learning how to execute the slide step.’
      • ‘Paddy's two goals were executed to perfection - they were quality finishes.’
      • ‘The manoeuvre was expertly executed, the finish applied with an aplomb of which Ian would have been proud.’
      • ‘He drove a very strong race pushing hard throughout and perfectly executing an overtaking manoeuvre over Michael that turned out to be decisive for us to finish third.’
      • ‘Entertaining the masses, though, isn't nearly as exhilarating as executing a perfect dive.’
      • ‘When this maneuver is properly executed, you can literally turn within one wingspan.’
      • ‘One soldier managed to successfully execute the somersault maneuver that most people are familiar with from the childhoods.’
      • ‘York were unprepared for Featherstone's short kick-off which they executed to perfection.’
      • ‘Its virtuosic male performers towered impressively on stilts while executing complex choreography and astonishing feats of acrobatics.’
      • ‘Although he had time to shoot under Marshall, Luna swivelled and as the keeper bore down on him executed a dive of glorious artistic merit.’
      • ‘While figure skating involves graceful acrobatic manoeuvres with music in the background, the freestyle performer executes a set of movements tracing a figure on the floor.’
      • ‘Jamie executes a perfect jump turn beside me and asks innocently, ‘Are you all right, Daddy?’’
      • ‘Wearing a less revealing tank top instead will still allow you to see just enough skin and muscle to properly execute your training movements.’
      • ‘I protested that I had to enter the bus lane (which, incidentally, was bus-free at the time) to execute a left turn.’
      perform, present, render
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    3. 1.3Law Make (a legal instrument) valid by signing or sealing it.
      • ‘Once a security instrument is executed, says GMAC, it attaches immediately to all assets covered by that instrument.’
      • ‘No new beneficial interest is created in favour of the appellant or anybody else, and the property remains subject to the same trusts as it did before the instrument was executed.’
      • ‘If amount is in foreign currency, stamp duty is charged on the Irish equivalent according to the exchange rate prevailing on the day the instrument is executed.’
      • ‘So the rights, whatever they were, were created, at least according to the language of the documents, a week before the dutiable instrument was executed.’
      • ‘If he elects to have another person registered he shall execute an instrument of transfer of the share to that person.’
    4. 1.4Law Carry out (a judicial sentence, the terms of a will, or other order)
      ‘police executed a search warrant’
      • ‘A dozen men armed with clubs set upon a corporal in the colonial militia when he tried to execute a sentence on a man delinquent in his duty.’
      • ‘On March 23 the police executed a search warrant at a warehouse and made further seizures.’
      • ‘This can lead to the travellers moving to another car park when the order is executed and the whole process has to be gone through again.’
      • ‘West Vancouver police executed a search warrant on the residence later that day.’
      • ‘The death penalty being spoken of for both is a barbaric obscenity that achieves nothing - except diminish everyone involved in executing the sentence.’
    5. 1.5Computing Carry out an instruction or program.
      • ‘Modern microprocessors can execute three or more instructions per clock cycle.’
      • ‘It executes program instructions, writes and reads information to or from memory, and accesses peripheral devices such as serial ports and disk controllers.’
      • ‘Once you click OK, all of these commands are executed in order in the window shown in Figure 14.’
      • ‘Privilege Level means that the program can execute all CPU instructions.’
      • ‘With Code Morphing, the translation process can be optimized by looking at the generated code and minimizing the number of instructions executed.’
  • 2Carry out a sentence of death on (a legally condemned person)

    ‘he was convicted of treason and executed’
    • ‘The PA sentenced 12 people to death and two people were executed.’
    • ‘Seventy seven men were executed on charges of treason though historians tend to think the figure is higher.’
    • ‘Most shockingly, Americans still support the death penalty in large numbers despite an awareness that innocent people are executed.’
    • ‘You see all these different movies with people being executed for committing treason or murder.’
    • ‘Edith Cavell was executed by a German firing squad on October 12, 1915.’
    • ‘1530s only some 330 people were executed for treason, of whom 287 died as rebels in the Pilgrimage of Grace in 1536.’
    • ‘Despite the proliferation of the death penalty for many new offences, less than half the people condemned to death were executed.’
    • ‘Six hundred years to the day since he was executed for high treason, descendants of Archbishop Richard Scrope arrived from across the globe for a service at the city's cathedral to commemorate his life.’
    • ‘Well, even though he was executed 122 years ago, bushranger Ned Kelly continues to have a strange hold over the nation's imagination.’
    • ‘There is the existence of legal homicide - as when a convicted and condemned criminal is executed pursuant to court order.’
    • ‘The rest were captured and either died in prison or were executed for treason.’
    • ‘Despite this evidence, he was executed at six o'clock on the morning of April 22.’
    • ‘He was executed by lethal injection on March 21st 2005.’
    • ‘His capture marked the final defeat of the losing side in the civil war and after a dramatic trial in Belgrade, he was executed for treason and war crimes on 17 July 1946.’
    • ‘However he was not able to shake the bitemark evidence which was subject to two appeals, and he was eventually executed ten years after his conviction.’
    • ‘Now, it suggested, the availability of DNA evidence reduces the risk of executing an innocent person.’
    • ‘What will the situation be if a person is executed under a law that has been deemed unconstitutional and invalid?’
    • ‘If the case against them holds up, they are likely to become the next cause célèbre in the national debate over executing people who are sentenced to death while juveniles.’
    • ‘At least seven criminals, mostly rapists, have been executed by lethal injection since the penalty was restored.’
    • ‘It is not difficult to understand why in some parts of the world traffickers in heroin in any substantial quality are sentenced to death and executed.’
    put to death, carry out a sentence of death on, kill
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    1. 2.1 Kill (someone) as a political act.
      ‘he would be executed if he fell into rebel hands’
      • ‘The prison was where the president's henchmen tortured and executed many political prisoners.’
      • ‘Officials said troops, with no alternative but to fight to the death, were executing comrades who wanted to surrender.’
      • ‘During this time the government ran its own reign of terror - tens of thousands of people were made political prisoners, were executed on the streets, or simply disappeared.’
      • ‘They have been bullying the mainland into continuing retreat and concessions whilst they continue to maim kill and execute people in the province.’
      • ‘Party members routinely lynch and execute their opponents without trial.’
      • ‘A marine has admitted to executing an enemy soldier by shooting him in the back of the head, and killing another who was trying to run away.’
      • ‘They systematically sought out political opponents and executed some on sight.’
      • ‘A Nazi officer tells the mayor of a Greek village that unless he kills three suspected partisans, his soldiers will execute fifty children.’
      • ‘Torture is one thing, but I don't see how executing prisoners is any different to killing them in battle.’
      • ‘All of these members were pulled out of a public meeting and summarily executed.’
      • ‘Bert quickly learned that the soldiers summarily executed anyone who strayed from the march.’
      • ‘The fates of her other sons are unknown: it is likely they were executed by the militants as informers.’
      • ‘The administration is trying to frame a guilty man and lead a lynch mob to execute him.’
      • ‘Over 2000 political prisoners were executed that night!’
      • ‘And eventually, that individual was killed, summarily executed by the IRA.’
      • ‘The police summarily execute anyone who resists with anything considered weaponry - shields, sticks, rocks.’
      • ‘It is unclear how many of the seven soldiers were executed, rather than killed in fighting, as the authorities contend.’
      • ‘A further 23 political prisoners were executed there in October 2001.’


Late Middle English: from Old French executer, from medieval Latin executare, from Latin exsequi ‘follow up, punish’, from ex- ‘out’ + sequi ‘follow’.