Definitions

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

  • transitive verb To discover or ascertain the existence, presence, or fact of.
  • transitive verb To discern (something hidden or subtle).
  • transitive verb To learn something hidden and often improper about.
  • transitive verb Electronics To demodulate.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To uncover; lay bare; expose; show.
  • To discover; find out; ascertain the existence, presence, or fact of: as, to detect an error in an account; to detect the presence of arsenic.
  • To find out the action or character of; discover a fault or wrong in; unveil, as a person: as, to detect a man in the act of cheating; to detect a hypocrite.
  • To reveal the guilt or alleged guilt of; inform against; complain of; accuse.
  • Synonyms To find, ascertain, descry, make out, ferret out, penetrate.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • transitive verb To uncover; to discover; to find out; to bring to light
  • transitive verb obsolete To inform against; to accuse.
  • adjective obsolete Detected.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • verb to discover or find by careful search, examination, or probing

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • verb discover or determine the existence, presence, or fact of

Etymologies

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

[Middle English detecten, from Latin dētegere, dētēct-, to uncover : dē-, de- + tegere, to cover; see (s)teg- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Latin detectus, perfect passive participle of detegere ("to uncover or disclose"), from de- + tegere ("to cover"); see tegument, tile, thatch

Examples

Comments

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  • He detected a smile on his girlfriend's face.

    April 14, 2007