To tell or utter so that another may write down; to inspire; to compose; as, to dictate a letter to an amanuensis.
- To say or read aloud to be recorded or written by another: dictate a letter.
- To prescribe with authority; impose: dictated the rules of the game.
- To control or command: "Foreign leaders were . . . dictated by their own circumstances, bound by the universal imperatives of politics” ( Doris Kearns Goodwin).
- To say or read aloud material to be recorded or written by another: dictated for an hour before leaving for the day.
- To issue orders or commands.
- A directive; a command.
- A guiding principle: followed the dictates of my conscience.