I. dis ‧ charge 1 /dɪsˈtʃɑːdʒ $ -ɑːr-/ BrE AmE verb
[ Date: 1300-1400 ; Language: Old French ; Origin: descharger , from Late Latin carricare 'to load' ]
1 . SEND SOMEBODY AWAY [transitive] to officially allow someone to leave somewhere, especially the hospital or the army, navy etc, or to tell them that they must leave:
Hospitals now tend to discharge patients earlier than in the past.
The judge discharged the jury.
discharge somebody from something
Several of the recruits were discharged from the Army due to medical problems.
discharge yourself British English (=leave hospital before your treatment is complete)
conditionally discharge somebody British English (=let someone leave prison if they obey particular rules)
Dunning was conditionally discharged for two years.
2 . GAS/LIQUID/SMOKE ETC [intransitive always + adverb/preposition, transitive] to send out gas, liquid, smoke etc, or to allow it to escape
discharge something into something
Sewage is discharged directly into the sea.
Rainwater collects here and then discharges into the river Kennett.
3 . SHOOT [transitive] formal to fire a gun or shoot an ↑ arrow etc:
A soldier accidentally discharged his weapon.
4 . DUTY/RESPONSIBILITY/DEBT ETC [transitive] formal to do or pay what you have a duty to do or pay
discharge your duties/responsibilities/obligations etc
The trustees failed to discharge their duties properly.
5 . ELECTRICITY [intransitive and transitive] if a piece of electrical equipment discharges, or if it is discharged, it sends out electricity
6 . A WOUND [intransitive and transitive] if a wound or body part discharges a substance such as ↑ pus (=infected liquid) , the substance slowly comes out of it
7 . GOODS/PASSENGERS [transitive] formal to take goods or passengers off a ship, plane etc
• • •
▪ fire ( also dismiss formal ) to make someone leave their job, especially because they have done something wrong:
He was fired for surfing the Internet during work time.
Harris was caught stealing, and was dismissed from his job.
▪ sack/give somebody the sack British English informal to make someone leave their job, especially because they are not good at it, or because they have done something wrong:
Bates was sacked from his job after the team failed to win any games.
His boss gave him the sack for taking too much time off work.
▪ lay somebody off to make a lot of workers, especially workers in a large factory or organization, leave their jobs, because there is not enough work for them to do, or not enough money to pay their wages:
3000 car workers have been laid off at the factory in Cleveland.
▪ make somebody redundant British English to make someone leave their job because they are no longer needed:
5 staff will be made redundant at the end of this month.
▪ let somebody go to make someone leave their job, Used by employers to avoid saying directly that they are getting rid of people:
We’ve had to let two members of staff go.
▪ discharge to make someone leave their job in the army, air force etc:
Grant had been discharged from the navy for threatening an officer.
▪ ease somebody out to make someone leave their job in a way that makes it seem as if they have chosen to leave:
He had been eased out of office in an attempt to prevent a political crisis.
▪ relieve somebody of their post/position formal to make someone leave their job because they have done something wrong. Used especially to avoid saying this directly, and also when the job is a powerful one:
The colonel and two other senior officers were relieved of their posts.
II. dis ‧ charge 2 /ˈdɪstʃɑːdʒ $ -tʃɑːrdʒ/ BrE AmE noun formal
1 . [uncountable] when you officially allow someone to leave somewhere, especially the hospital or their job in the army, navy etc
Nurses visit the mother and baby for two weeks after their discharge from the hospital.
⇨ ↑ dishonourable discharge , ↑ honorable discharge
2 . [uncountable and countable] when gas, liquid, smoke etc is sent out, or the substance that is sent out
the discharge of toxic waste into the sea
3 . [uncountable and countable] when a substance slowly comes out of a wound or part of your body, or the substance that comes out
4 . [uncountable and countable] electricity that is sent out by a piece of equipment, a storm etc
5 . [uncountable] when someone performs a duty or pays a debt
the discharge of the college’s legal responsibilities
6 . [uncountable] when someone shoots a gun