from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A fir or pine board cut to standard dimensions.
  • noun Such boards or planks considered as a group.
  • noun Fir or pine wood.
  • intransitive verb To give out in shares or portions; apportion: synonym: distribute.
  • intransitive verb To distribute (playing cards) among players.
  • intransitive verb To give (a specific card) to a player while so distributing.
  • intransitive verb To sell.
  • intransitive verb To administer; deliver.
  • intransitive verb To be occupied or concerned.
  • intransitive verb To behave in a specified way toward another or others; have transactions.
  • intransitive verb To take action with respect to someone or something.
  • intransitive verb Informal To cope.
  • intransitive verb To do business; trade.
  • intransitive verb Games To distribute playing cards.
  • intransitive verb Slang To buy and sell drugs, especially illegally.
  • intransitive verb Baseball To throw a pitch.
  • noun The act or a round of apportioning or distributing.
  • noun Distribution of playing cards.
  • noun The cards so distributed; a hand.
  • noun The right or turn of a player to distribute the cards.
  • noun The playing of one hand.
  • noun An indefinite quantity, extent, or degree.
  • noun An agreement, especially one that is mutually beneficial. synonym: agreement.
  • noun A business transaction.
  • noun A legal contract.
  • noun Informal A sale favorable especially to the buyer; a bargain.
  • noun Informal Treatment received.
  • noun Informal The situation or background information regarding something.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To divide; part; separate; hence, to divide in portions; apportion; distribute, as, in card-playing, to give to each player the proper number of cards: often followed by out.
  • To distribute to.
  • To scatter; hurl; throw about; deliver: as, to deal out blows.
  • To engage in mutual intercourse or transactions of any kind; have to do with a person or thing, or be concerned in a matter: absolutely or with with or in.
  • Specifically To negotiate or make bargains; traffic or trade: with a person, in articles: as, he deals in pig-iron.
  • To negotiate corruptly; make a secret agreement; conspire: with with.
  • To intervene as a mediator or middleman.
  • To act; behave: in a matter, with, by, or toward a person or thing.
  • noun A board or plank.
  • noun Wood of fir or pine, such as deals are made from: as, a floor of deal.
  • noun A part; portion; share.
  • noun Hence An indefinite quantity, degree, or extent: as, a deal of time and trouble; a deal of snow; a deal of money. In this sense usually qualified with great or good: as, a great deal of labor; a good deal of one's time.
  • noun The division or distribution of cards in playing; the act or practice of dealing; the right or privilege of distributing the cards; a single round, during which all the cards dealt at one time are played.
  • noun Hence, a bargain or arrangement among a number of persons for mutual advantage as against others; a secret commercial or political transaction for the exclusive benefit of those engaged in it: as, a deal in wheat or cotton; they made a deal for the division of the offices.


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English dele, from Middle Dutch and Middle Low German dele, plank.]

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English delen, from Old English dǣlan, to divide, share; see dail- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English dele, from Old English dǣl ("part, share, portion"), from Proto-Germanic *dailiz (“part, deal”), from Proto-Indo-European *dhAil- (“part, watershed”). Cognate with Scots dele ("part, portion"), West Frisian diel ("part, share"), Dutch deel ("part, share, portion"), German Teil ("part, portion, section"), Danish del ("part"), Icelandic deila ("division, contention"), Gothic 𐌳𐌰𐌹𐌻𐍃 (dails, "portion"). Related to Old English dāl ("portion"). More at dole.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Middle Low German dele, cognate with Old English þille.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English delen, from Old English dǣlan ("to divide, part"), from Proto-Germanic *dailijanan (“to divide, part, deal”), from Proto-Indo-European *dʰail- (“part, watershed”). Cognate with West Frisian diele ("to divide, separate"), Dutch delen, German teilen, Swedish dela; and with Lithuanian dalinti ("divide"), Russian делить.


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