In the following sentence, I can't correctly understand the meaning of "This undertaking led in 1875 to a commission from the railway". By the way, what is the word "commission" here mean? Could you help me clarify this?

This undertaking led in 1875 to a commission from the railway to record the principal structures along the almost-completed line connecting Montreal to Halifax.

  • commission - An instruction, command, or role given to a person or group. Ex: One of his first commissions was to redesign the Great Exhibition building. Commented Nov 3, 2020 at 14:11

1 Answer 1


From Merriam Webster:

commission noun

com·​mis·​sion | \ kə-ˈmi-shən \
plural commissions

1 a : a formal written warrant granting the power to perform various acts or duties

Your quote lacks context, but I assume “the undertaking” refers to a prior project that was completed successfully, which led to getting a commission for a new project in 1875.

  • Thanks for your answer but I don't think it's the meaning of the sentence.
    – Huy-Nguyen
    Commented Nov 3, 2020 at 6:56
  • The result of 'this undertaking' was that, in 1875, the railway commissioned a team (gave them the authority) to report on the principal structures... Commented Nov 3, 2020 at 9:36

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