Contract vs Mandate - What's the difference?

contract | mandate |

As verbs the difference between contract and mandate

is that contract is (ambitransitive) to draw together or nearer; to shorten, narrow, or lessen while mandate is .

As a noun contract

is an agreement between two or more parties, to perform a specific job or work order, often temporary or of fixed duration and usually governed by a written agreement.

As an adjective contract

is (obsolete) contracted; affianced; betrothed.


Etymology 1

From (etyl), from (etyl) contract, from (etyl) contractum, past participle of .


(en noun)
  • An agreement between two or more parties, to perform a specific job or work order, often temporary or of fixed duration and usually governed by a written agreement.
  • * {{quote-magazine, date=2013-08-10, volume=408, issue=8848, magazine=(The Economist), author=Lexington
  • , title= Keeping the mighty honest , passage=British journalists shun complete respectability, feeling a duty to be ready to savage the mighty, or rummage through their bins. Elsewhere in Europe, government contracts and subsidies ensure that press barons will only defy the mighty so far.}}
  • (legal) An agreement which the law will enforce in some way. A legally binding contract must contain at least one promise, i.e., a commitment or offer, by an offeror to and accepted by an offeree to do something in the future. A contract is thus executory rather than executed.
  • (legal) A part of legal studies dealing with laws and jurisdiction related to contracts.
  • (informal) An order, usually given to a hired assassin, to kill someone.
  • (bridge) The declarer's undertaking to win the number of tricks bid with a stated suit as trump.
  • Hypernyms
    * (agreement that is legally binding) agreement
    * (agreement that is legally binding) bailment
    Derived terms
    * contractual * fixed-term contract * contract of employment


  • (obsolete) Contracted; affianced; betrothed.
  • (Shakespeare)
  • (obsolete) Not abstract; concrete.
  • * Robert Recorde, , 1557:
  • But now in eche kinde of these, there are certaine nombers named Ab?tracte'': and other called nombers ''Contracte .

    Etymology 2

    From (etyl), from (etyl) contracter, from (etyl) contractum, past participle of . the verb developed after the noun, and originally meant only "draw together"; the sense "make a contract with" developed later.


    (en verb)
  • (ambitransitive) To draw together or nearer; to shorten, narrow, or lessen.
  • The snail's body contracted into its shell.
    to contract one's sphere of action
  • * Wordsworth
  • Years contracting to a moment.
  • * Dr. H. More
  • In all things desuetude doth contract and narrow our faculties.
  • (grammar) To shorten by omitting a letter or letters or by reducing two or more vowels or syllables to one.
  • The word "cannot" is often contracted into "can't".
  • To enter into a contract with. (rfex)
  • To enter into, with mutual obligations; to make a bargain or covenant for.
  • * Hakluyt
  • We have contracted an inviolable amity, peace, and league with the aforesaid queen.
  • * Strype
  • Many persons prohibited by law.
  • To make an agreement or contract; to covenant; to agree; to bargain.
  • to contract for carrying the mail
  • To bring on; to incur; to acquire.
  • She contracted the habit of smoking in her teens.
    to contract a debt
  • * Alexander Pope
  • Each from each contract new strength and light.
  • * Jonathan Swift
  • Such behaviour we contract by having much conversed with persons of high stature.
  • To gain or acquire (an illness).
  • * 1999 , Davidson C. Umeh, Protect Your Life: A Health Handbook for Law Enforcement Professionals (page 69)
  • An officer contracted hepatitis B and died after handling the blood-soaked clothing of a homicide victim
  • To draw together so as to wrinkle; to knit.
  • * Shakespeare
  • Thou didst contract and purse thy brow.
  • To betroth; to affiance.
  • * Shakespeare
  • The truth is, she and I, long since contracted , / Are now so sure, that nothing can dissolve us.
    * (lessen) abate, decrease, lessen, reduce * (shorten) shorten, shrink * catch, get
    * (lessen) increase, expand * (shorten) grow, lengthen



    (en noun)
  • An official or authoritative command; an order or injunction; a commission; a judicial precept.
  • Verb

  • to authorize
  • to make mandatory
  • Derived terms

    * mandatary * mandator * mandatory