execute

To execute means to carry out in full or perform. If you execute all the difficult steps of the dance perfectly, you will make your instructor proud.

Here’s what’s tricky about execute: the first thing you think of is being punished with death for criminal actions. Actually, it's more commonly used in the sense of “to carry out in full.” So don't be alarmed with visions of the hooded guy at the guillotine when someone congratulates you on a plan well executed. Think of the word executive to get a closer grasp of both the meaning and the context.

Definitions of execute
  1. verb
    put in effect
    execute the decision of the people”
    synonyms: accomplish, action, carry out, carry through, fulfil, fulfill
    carry out, follow out, follow through, follow up, go through, implement, put through
    pursue to a conclusion or bring to a successful issue
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    get over
    to bring (a necessary but unpleasant task) to an end
    run
    carry out
    consummate
    make perfect; bring to perfection
    consummate
    fulfill sexually
    do, perform
    get (something) done
    complete, discharge, dispatch
    complete or carry out
    overachieve
    perform better or achieve a greater degree of success than expected
    turn
    accomplish by rotating
    underachieve, underperform
    perform less well or with less success than expected
    misdo
    do wrongly or improperly
    do one's best, give full measure, give one's best, go all out
    perform a task as well as possible
    ply
    apply oneself diligently
    type of:
    complete, finish
    come or bring to a finish or an end
    effect, effectuate, set up
    produce
  2. verb
    carry out or perform an action
    “the skater executed a triple pirouette”
    synonyms: do, perform
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    click off
    perform or finish an action rapidly
    carry
    sing or play against other voices or parts
    pipe up
    begin to play or sing
    declaim, recite
    recite in elocution
    serenade
    sing and play for somebody
    cut corners
    do something the cheapest or easiest way
    stunt
    perform a stunt or stunts
    cut
    perform or carry out
    blaze away
    perform (an acting passage) brilliantly and rapidly
    scamp
    perform hastily and carelessly
    churn out
    perform in a mechanical way
    premier, premiere
    perform a work for the first time
    star
    be the star in a performance
    appear
    appear as a character on stage or appear in a play, etc.
    practice, practise, rehearse
    engage in a rehearsal (of)
    ad-lib, extemporise, extemporize, improvise, improvize
    perform without preparation
    interpret, render
    give an interpretation or rendition of
    conduct, direct, lead
    lead, as in the performance of a composition
    make
    perform or carry out
    elocute
    declaim in an elocutionary manner
    perorate
    deliver an oration in grandiloquent style
    scan
    read metrically
    co-star
    be the co-star in a performance
    walk through
    perform in a perfunctory way, as for a first rehearsal
    scrimmage
    practice playing (a sport)
    sing
    deliver by singing
    pay
    render
  3. verb
    carry out a process or program, as on a computer or a machine
    “the computer executed the instruction”
    synonyms: run
    play, run
    cause to emit recorded audio or video
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    types:
    step
    cause (a computer) to execute a single command
    type of:
    apply, enforce, implement
    ensure observance of laws and rules
  4. verb
    carry out the legalities of
    execute a will or a deed”
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    give
    execute and deliver
    type of:
    apply, enforce, implement
    ensure observance of laws and rules
  5. verb
    sign in the presence of witnesses
    “The President executed the treaty”
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    type of:
    sign
    be engaged by a written agreement
  6. verb
    murder in a planned fashion
    Synonyms:
    put to death
    kill as a means of socially sanctioned punishment
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    type of:
    bump off, dispatch, hit, murder, off, polish off, remove, slay
    kill intentionally and with premeditation
  7. verb
    kill as a means of socially sanctioned punishment
    “In some states, criminals are executed
    synonyms: put to death
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    crucify
    kill by nailing onto a cross
    burn
    burn at the stake
    hang, string up
    kill by hanging
    halter
    hang with a halter
    gibbet
    hang on an execution instrument
    type of:
    kill
    cause to die; put to death, usually intentionally or knowingly
    penalise, penalize, punish, sanction
    impose a penalty on; inflict punishment on
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