expel vs release what difference

what is difference between expel and release



Late Middle English: from Latin expellere, from ex- (out) +‎ pellere (to drive).


  • IPA(key): /ɪkˈspɛl/
  • Rhymes: -ɛl
  • Hyphenation: ex‧pel


expel (third-person singular simple present expels, present participle expelling, simple past and past participle expelled)

  1. To eject or erupt.
  2. (obsolete) To fire (a bullet, arrow etc.).
  3. (transitive) To remove from membership.
    Synonyms: drive away, drive out, force out
  4. (transitive) To deport.


  • fordrive, turf out


  • impel

Related terms

  • expulsion



Etymology 1

From Middle English relesen, relessen, from Old French relaisser (variant of relascher).


  • IPA(key): /ɹɪˈliːs/
  • Rhymes: -iːs


release (countable and uncountable, plural releases)

  1. The event of setting (someone or something) free (e.g. hostages, slaves, prisoners, caged animals, hooked or stuck mechanisms).
  2. (software) The distribution of an initial or new and upgraded version of a computer software product; the distribution can be either public or private.
  3. Anything recently released or made available (as for sale).
  4. That which is released, untied or let go.
  5. (law) The giving up of a claim, especially a debt.
  6. Liberation from pain or suffering.
  7. (biochemistry) The process by which a chemical substance is set free.
  8. (phonetics, sound synthesis) The act or manner of ending a sound.
  9. (railways, historical) In the block system, a printed card conveying information and instructions to be used at intermediate sidings without telegraphic stations.
  10. A device adapted to hold or release a device or mechanism as required.
    1. A catch on a motor-starting rheostat, which automatically releases the rheostat arm and so stops the motor in case of a break in the field circuit.
    2. The catch on an electromagnetic circuit breaker for a motor, triggered in the event of an overload.
    3. The lever or button on a camera that opens the shutter to allow a photograph to be taken
  11. Orgasm.
  12. (music) A kind of bridge used in jazz music.
Derived terms


release (third-person singular simple present releases, present participle releasing, simple past and past participle released)

  1. To let go (of); to cease to hold or contain.
  2. To make available to the public.
  3. To free or liberate; to set free.
  4. To discharge.
  5. (telephony) (of a call) To hang up.
  6. (law) To let go, as a legal claim; to discharge or relinquish a right to, as lands or tenements, by conveying to another who has some right or estate in possession, as when the person in remainder releases his right to the tenant in possession; to quit.
  7. To loosen; to relax; to remove the obligation of.
    • 1594, Richard Hooker, Of the Lawes of Ecclesiastical Politie
      punishments inflicted and released
  8. (soccer) To set up; to provide with a goal-scoring opportunity
  9. (biochemistry) To set free a chemical substance.
  10. (intransitive) to come out; be out.
  • hold

Etymology 2

re- +‎ lease


  • IPA(key): /ɹiːˈliːs/
  • Rhymes: -iːs


release (third-person singular simple present releases, present participle releasing, simple past and past participle released)

  1. (transitive) To lease again; to grant a new lease of; to let back.

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