AskDefine | Define distribute

Dictionary Definition



1 administer or bestow, as in small portions; "administer critical remarks to everyone present"; "dole out some money"; "shell out pocket money for the children"; "deal a blow to someone" [syn: administer, mete out, deal, parcel out, lot, dispense, shell out, deal out, dish out, allot, dole out]
2 distribute or disperse widely; "The invaders spread their language all over the country" [syn: spread] [ant: gather]
3 make available; "The publisher wants to distribute the book in Asia"
4 give out; "The teacher handed out the exams" [syn: give out, hand out]
5 cause to be distributed; "This letter is circulating among the faculty" [syn: circulate, pass around, pass on]
6 cause to become widely known; "spread information"; "circulate a rumor"; "broadcast the news" [syn: circulate, circularize, circularise, disseminate, propagate, broadcast, spread, diffuse, disperse, pass around]
7 spread throughout a given area; "the function distributes the values evenly"
8 be distributed or spread, as in statistical analyses; "Values distribute"
9 be mathematically distributive
10 to arrange in a systematic order; "stagger the chairs in the lecture hall" [syn: stagger]

User Contributed Dictionary




  1. : To divide something into portions and dispense it.
    He distributed the bread amongst his followers.
  2. : To supply goods to retail outlets.
    The agency distributes newspapers to local shops.
  3. : To deliver or pass out something.
    A network of children distributes flyers to every house.
  4. : To scatter or spread something.
    I raked the soil then distributed grass seed.
  5. : To apportion (more or less evenly).
    The robot's six legs distributed its weight over a wide area.
  6. : To classify or separate into categories.
    The database distributed verbs into transitive and intransitive segments.
  7. : (mathematics) To be distributive.


to divide something into portions and dispense it
to supply goods to retail outlets
  • Finnish: jaella
  • French: distribuer
  • German: ausliefern, verteilen
  • Hebrew: להפיץ (lehafytz)
  • Japanese: 配達する (haitatsu-suru), 配送する (haisō-suru)
  • Swedish: distribuera
to deliver or pass out something
to scatter or spread something
  • Finnish: levittää
  • German: verteilen
  • Japanese: 蒔く (maku)
  • Swedish: fördela
to apportion
  • Finnish: jakaa
  • French: répartir
  • German: verteilen
  • Hebrew: לחלק (lekhaleq)
  • Japanese: 分散する (bunsan-suru)
  • Swedish: fördela
to classify or separate into categories
to be distributive
  • Finnish: jakautua
  • Japanese: 分布する (bunpu-suru)

Derived terms



From distributus, participle of distribuo


  • Charlton T. Lewis (1891) An Elementary Latin Dictionary, 1st edition. (Oxford University Press)

Extensive Definition

Distribution may refer to:

Mathematics / Physics

Distribution theory commonly refers to either the theory of generalized functions or the theory of probability distributions.

Computer science

See also

distribute in German: Verteilung
distribute in French: Distribution
distribute in Indonesian: Distribusi
distribute in Italian: Distribuzione
distribute in Dutch: Distributie
distribute in Japanese: 分布
distribute in Portuguese: Distribuição
distribute in Sicilian: Distribbuzzioni
distribute in Simple English: Distribution
distribute in Thai: การกระจายตัว

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

administer, align, allocate, allot, apportion, arrange, array, assign, assort, bestow, bestrew, broadcast, categorize, circulate, circumfuse, class, classify, collocate, come across with, compose, convey, deal, deal out, deliver, deliver over, diffract, diffuse, disburse, dish out, dispense, disperse, dispose, dispread, disseminate, diverge, divide, divide up, dole, dole out, donate, dribble, fan out, file, fix, fork over, forward, give, give in, give out, give over, group, hand, hand in, hand out, hand over, issue, line, line up, marshal, measure out, mete, mete out, order, overscatter, oversow, overspread, parcel, parcel out, partition, pass, pass around, pass out, pass over, pay out, place, portion, portion out, present, propagate, prorate, publish, radiate, rally, range, ration, reach, regiment, render, resign, retail, scatter, set out, share out, sort, sow, sow broadcast, space, splay, spoon out, spread, spread out, strew, surrender, transfer, turn over, utter
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