Definition of urgent in US English:



  • 1(of a state or situation) requiring immediate action or attention.

    ‘the situation is far more urgent than politicians are admitting’
    • ‘Scott says that the reasons which were mooted two years ago for the merger remain the same today, only now they're more urgent.’
    • ‘The question of professional refereeing is an urgent issue that needs immediate attention.’
    • ‘They have worked in dreadful conditions for years and this is a very urgent situation.’
    • ‘Mr. Wright concluded that there was nothing urgent requiring immediate attention.’
    • ‘Building an independent, rank and file network across the unions becomes all the more urgent in this situation.’
    • ‘This is an urgent debate, and we have to start looking at fundamental flaws in the system.’
    • ‘These are the urgent issues that need attention, with special reference also to gender.’
    • ‘If the situation seemed urgent, the receptionist would notify the police or emergency centre.’
    • ‘Fundamental changes are urgent if we are to avoid the collision our present course will bring about.’
    • ‘With half of India set to live in cities by 2020, he says the need to engage urban voters is urgent.’
    • ‘Our challenges in health care and nursing continue to be more immediate and urgent.’
    • ‘The approach of the Himalayan winter is making a desperate situation even more urgent.’
    • ‘The challenge is to balance the planned work on my caseload with the urgent matters that need attention.’
    • ‘The pressure for change is urgent, however, and only politics can span the gap.’
    • ‘The meeting is urgent because the 56 days that members have to oppose plans are up on April 30.’
    • ‘It is urgent that immediate action is taken to protect the graves.’
    • ‘Now, with the arrival of the East London Line extension set for 2010, it feels change is more urgent than ever.’
    • ‘The Commissioner said the changes were urgent and had to be made now, not in four years time.’
    • ‘There is an urgent debate to be had: how does counter-consumerism maintain the rage?’
    • ‘Further attacks remain a real possibility, so action to protect our citizens is urgent.’
    acute, grave, pressing, dire, desperate, critical, crucial, sore, serious, intense, crying, burning, compelling, drastic, extreme
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 (of action or an event) done or arranged in response to a pressing or critical situation.
      ‘she needs urgent treatment’
      • ‘We have the shoppers and the school cars and urgent additional parking is required.’
      • ‘Police are warning anyone who drinks it and feels ill to seek urgent medical attention.’
      • ‘School finances in the city are in a critical state and require urgent action to put them right, a new report says.’
      • ‘There were not enough of us to make the originally planned expedition viable, and an urgent alternative was required.’
      • ‘After reading the report in the local press, I feel the matter requires urgent clarification.’
      • ‘We also subsidise veterinary fees for the people of Bolton and districts that require urgent help and have done so for many years.’
      • ‘That would be appropriate if a particular threat required urgent measures.’
      • ‘More than half of cancer patients requiring an urgent referral are having to wait longer than two months.’
      • ‘There are a large number of schools in other parts of the country and in my own constituency which require urgent work.’
      • ‘Any symptoms that affect your mental health require urgent medical attention.’
      • ‘Patients requiring urgent care were treated within days and prioritised patients within six weeks.’
      • ‘The authorities must pay urgent attention to the growing statistics of homeless families.’
      • ‘The temples require urgent restoration by skilled craftsmen who work on heritage structures.’
      • ‘Such matters require urgent national and international publicity and review.’
      • ‘These houses now require urgent investment and refurbishment before they can be allocated.’
      • ‘This is an omission in the statute which requires urgent attention.’
      • ‘This issue requires urgent attention from researchers, regulatory bodies, and the public.’
      • ‘The child required urgent medical attention but did not develop long term adverse effects.’
      • ‘The action at Heathrow requires an urgent answer and immediate steps to ensure that this happens.’
      • ‘I don't think I have anything to do that has an urgent deadline or immediately requires my attention.’
      emergency, high-priority, top-priority, important, vital, crucial
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2 (of a person or their manner) earnest and persistent in response to a pressing situation.
      ‘an urgent whisper’
      • ‘He was urgent, almost angry, in his passion and the whole thing left me feeling unfulfilled.’
      • ‘The tone of your letter can be folksy and conversational or urgent and earnest.’
      insistent, persistent, determined, resolute, tenacious, obstinate, dogged, pressing, unrelenting
      View synonyms


Late 15th century: from Old French, from Latin urgent- ‘pressing, driving’, from the verb urgere (see urge).