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Glossary of Military Terms
beginning with letter D
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dauntless Tweet Definition of dauntless Like Definition of dauntless on Facebook
adjective
  1. Invulnerable to fear or intimidation.
dawn patrol Tweet Definition of dawn patrol Like Definition of dawn patrol on Facebook
noun
  1. (surfing) The act of going out for a surf at dawn, or surfers who do that.
D-Day Tweet Definition of D-Day Like Definition of D-Day on Facebook
noun
  1. (historical) June 6th, 1944, the date during World War II when the allies invaded western Europe.
  2. (figuratively) The date of any major event planned for the future.
deactivate Tweet Definition of deactivate Like Definition of deactivate on Facebook
verb (deactivat, es)
  1. (ergative) to make something inactive or no longer effective
  2. to prevent the action of a biochemical agent (such as an enzyme)
  3. to remove a person or piece of hardware from active military service
debouch Tweet Definition of debouch Like Definition of debouch on Facebook
verb (debouch, es)
  1. To pour forth from a narrow opening.
  • 1985, the pretty pimpled young man, no longer a boy, came down from the imperial box in his purple to the performers" well which debouched into the arena. " Anthony Burgess, Kingdom of the Wicked
  • 1993, Ungrateful brats from their cheap holiday in someone else"s misery and their tired parents try desperately to summon up joy out of indifference. " Will Self, My Idea of Fun
  • 1997, the water rushes away in uncommonly long waterfalls, downward for hours, unbrak"d, till at last debouching into an interior Lake of great size " Thomas Pynchon, Mason & Dixon
  • DefCon Tweet Definition of DefCon Like Definition of DefCon on Facebook
    abbreviation
    1. (US military) Defense Condition
    defer Tweet Definition of defer Like Definition of defer on Facebook
    verb (defer, r, ing)
    1. To delay, or postpone, especially to postpone induction into military service.
    2. To submit to the opinion or desire of another in respect to their judgement or authority.
    deferred Tweet Definition of deferred Like Definition of deferred on Facebook
    adjective
    1. Of or pertaining to delay of an action.
    Examples : "requested a deferred payment"; "our postponed trip"
    1. Of or pertaining to deferment to someone else's decision or judgment.
    deflection Tweet Definition of deflection Like Definition of deflection on Facebook
    noun
    1. The act of deflecting or something deflected.
    2. The deviation of a needle or other indicator from its previous position.
    delta Tweet Definition of delta Like Definition of delta on Facebook
    noun
    1. The name for the fourth letter of the modern Greek alphabet ", δ.
    2. A landform at the mouth of a river where it empties into a body of water. w:River delta, Wikipedia has a detailed description.
    3. (phonetics) δ In the International Phonetic Alphabet, IPA, the symbol that represents the voiced dental fricative, the hard th in the English word father. Usu. represented by the Icelandic eth, eth/edh ().
    4. (mathematics) A change in some quantity.
    5. (context, computing, colloquial) A small but noticeable effect, compare with epsilon.
    This will slow the main code path down, but only by .
    1. (context, computing) The set of differences between two versions of a file.
    When you update the file, the system will only save the deltas.
    1. (context, surveying) The angle subtended at the center of a circular arc.
    2. The letter D in the ICAO spelling alphabet, which assigns words to letters of the alphabet.
    demobilize Tweet Definition of demobilize Like Definition of demobilize on Facebook
    verb (demobiliz, ing)
    1. To release someone from military duty, especially after a war.
    2. To disband troops, or remove them from a war footing.
    demolition Tweet Definition of demolition Like Definition of demolition on Facebook
    noun
    1. the action of demolishing or destroying, in particular of buildings or other structures
    demonstrate Tweet Definition of demonstrate Like Definition of demonstrate on Facebook
    verb (demonstrat, ing)
    1. To display the method of using an object.
    2. To show the steps taken to create a logical argument or equation.
    3. To participate in or organize a demonstration.
    demonstration Tweet Definition of demonstration Like Definition of demonstration on Facebook
    noun
    1. The act of demonstrate, demonstrating; showing or explaining something.
    2. An event at which something will be demonstrated.
    3. A public display of group opinion.
    department Tweet Definition of department Like Definition of department on Facebook
    noun
    1. A part, portion, or subdivision.
    2. A distinct course of life, action, study, or the like; appointed sphere or walk; province.
    • Superior to Pope in Pope's own peculiar of literature. Macaulay.
      1. Subdivision of business or official duty; especially, one of the principal divisions of executive government; as, the treasury department; the war department; also, in a university, one of the divisions of instructions; as, the medical department; the department of physics.
      2. A territorial division; a district; esp., in France, one of the districts composed of several arrondissements into which the country is divided for governmental purposes; as, the Department of the Loire.
      3. A military subdivision of a country; as, the Department of the Potomac.
      4. (obsolete) Act of departing; departure.
  • Sudden departments from one extreme to another. Wotton.
  • deploy Tweet Definition of deploy Like Definition of deploy on Facebook
    verb
    1. (transitive) To prepare and arrange (usu. military unit or units) for use.
    The word has roots as a military term, used to describe the placement of equipment and troops in a battlefield.
    "Deploy two units of infantry along the enemy's flank," the general ordered.
    1. (intransitive) To unfold, open, or otherwise become ready for use.
    He waited tensely for his parachute to deploy.
    1. (computing) to install, test and implement a computer system or application. The term can be used to refer to any installation and testing, such as setting up a new network in an enterprise, to installing a server farm, to implementing a new application over a distributed computing network. http://www.webopedia.com/TERM/D/deploy.html
    The process for the deployment scenario includes: building a master installation of the operating system, creating it's image and deploying the image onto a destination computer.
    depth charge Tweet Definition of depth charge Like Definition of depth charge on Facebook
    noun
    1. A form of bomb that is designed to detonate at a certain depth underwater for the purposes of attacking a submerged enemy, especially a submarine.
    desert Tweet Definition of desert Like Definition of desert on Facebook
    noun
    1. That which is considered to be deserved or merit, merited; a just punishment or reward (usually in plural).
    verb
    1. To leave (anything that depends on one's presence to survive, exist, or succeed), especially when contrary to a promise or obligation; to abandon; to forsake.
    You can't just drive off and me here, in the middle of nowhere.
    1. To leave one's duty or post, especially to leave a military or naval unit without permission
    Anyone found deserting will be shot.
    desertion Tweet Definition of desertion Like Definition of desertion on Facebook
    noun (Plural:desertions)
    1. The act of desert, deserting.
    destroyer Tweet Definition of destroyer Like Definition of destroyer on Facebook
    noun
    1. someone or something who/which destroys something
    2. a small, fast warship with light armament
    detach Tweet Definition of detach Like Definition of detach on Facebook
    verb (detach, es)
    1. to take apart from; to take off
    detail Tweet Definition of detail Like Definition of detail on Facebook
    noun (countable and uncountable; pluraldetails)
    1. (countable) Something small enough to escape casual notice.
    Note this fine detail in the lower left corner.
    We missed several important details in the contract.
    1. (uncountable) A profusion of details.
    This etching is full of fine detail
    1. Something considered trivial enough to ignore.
    I don't concern myself with the details of accounting
    1. (plural details) A person's name, address and other personal information.
    The arresting officer asked the suspect for his details.
    1. (military) a temporary unit
    verb
    1. (transitive) to explain in detail
    I'll detail the exact procedure to you later.
    1. (transitive) (US (?)) to clean carefully (particularly a car)
    We need to have the minivan detailed.
    1. (transitive)(military) to assign to a particular task
    dew Tweet Definition of dew Like Definition of dew on Facebook
    noun
    1. moisture in the air that settles on plants, etc in the morning, resulting in drops.
    verb
    1. To wet with, or as if with, dew; to moisten.
    director Tweet Definition of director Like Definition of director on Facebook
    noun
    1. One who directs; the person in charge of managing a department (e.g., director of engineering), project, or production (as in a show or film, e.g., film director).
    2. A device that displays graphical information concerning the targets of a weapons system in real time.
    dirty Tweet Definition of dirty Like Definition of dirty on Facebook
    verb (dirt, i, ed)
    1. (transitive) To make (something) dirty.
    2. (transitive) To stain or tarnish (somebody) with dishonor.
    3. (transitive) To debase by distorting the real nature of (something).
    4. (intransitive) To become soiled.
    adjective (dirt, ier)
    1. unclean, Unclean; covered with or containing unpleasant substances such as dirt or grime.
    Despite a walk in the rain, my shoes weren't too .
    1. That makes one unclean; corrupting, infecting.
    Don't put that in your mouth, dear, it's .
    1. Morally unclean; obscene or indecent, especially sexually.
    At the reception, Uncle Nick got drunk and told jokes to the bridesmaids.
    1. dishonourable, Dishonourable; violating accepted standards or rules.
    He might have scored, but it was a trick that won him the penalty.
    1. corrupt, Corrupt, illegal, or improper.
    I won't accept your money!
    1. (context, of color) Discolored by impurities.
    The old flag was a white.
    1. (computing) Containing data which need to be written back to a larger memory.
    Occasionally it reads the sector into a dirty buffer, which means it needs to sync the dirty buffer first.
    1. (computing) Containing data which need to be overwritten.
    2. (slang) Carrying illegal drugs.
    None of y'all get into my car if you're .
    adverb
    1. In a dirty manner.
    dirty bomb Tweet Definition of dirty bomb Like Definition of dirty bomb on Facebook
    noun
    1. A device containing conventional explosives and radioactive material, designed to spread radiation over a wide area.
    2. A nuclear bomb that speads radiation over a wide area due to inefficiency or design.
    disarm Tweet Definition of disarm Like Definition of disarm on Facebook
    verb
    1. To deprive of arms; to take away the weapons of; to deprive of the means of attack or defense; to render defenseless.
    2. To deprive of the means or the disposition to harm; to render harmless or innocuous; as, to disarm a man's wrath.
    discharge Tweet Definition of discharge Like Definition of discharge on Facebook
    noun
    1. (symptom) (uncountable) pus or exudate (other than blood) from a wound or orifice, usually due to infection or pathology
    2. the act of accomplishing (an obligation)
    3. the act of expelling or letting go
    4. (electricity) the act of releasing an accumulated charge
    5. (medicine) the act of releasing an inpatient from hospital
    6. (military) the act of releasing a member of the armed forces from service
    7. (hydrology) the discharge of a river is the volume of water transported by it in a certain amount of time, usually in units of m3/s (cubic meters per second)
    verb (discharg, ing)
    1. to accomplish or complete, as an obligation
    2. to expel or let go
    3. (electricity) to release (an accumulated charge)
    4. (medicine) to release (an inpatient) from hospital
    5. (military) to release (a member of the armed forces) from service
    6. to operate (any weapon that fires a projectile, such as a shotgun or sling)
    disengage Tweet Definition of disengage Like Definition of disengage on Facebook
    noun
    1. (fencing) A circular movement of the blade that avoids the opponent's parry
    verb (disengag, es)
    1. To release or loosen from something that binds, holds, entangles, or interlocks; unfasten; detach; disentangle; free.
    dispersion Tweet Definition of dispersion Like Definition of dispersion on Facebook
    noun
    1. The state of being dispersed; dispersedness.
    2. A process of dispersing.
    3. The degree of scatter of data.
    4. The separation of visible light by refraction or diffraction.
    diversion Tweet Definition of diversion Like Definition of diversion on Facebook
    noun
    DMZ Tweet Definition of DMZ Like Definition of DMZ on Facebook
    initialism
    1. demilitarized zone
    dog biscuit Tweet Definition of dog biscuit Like Definition of dog biscuit on Facebook
    noun
    1. food for dogs, compressed into a small dry shape.
    dogfight Tweet Definition of dogfight Like Definition of dogfight on Facebook
    noun
    1. A twisting turning battle between two or more military aircraft, especially between fighters.
    The two bi-planes swirled around each other like angry wasps in a violent .
    1. A fight between dogs.
    doodlebug Tweet Definition of doodlebug Like Definition of doodlebug on Facebook
    noun
    1. (informal),(British) the V-1 flying bomb
      1. A term of endearment.
    double time Tweet Definition of double time Like Definition of double time on Facebook
    noun
    1. (military) a fast marching pace of 180 forty-inch steps per minute, double the speed of quick time
      1. a rate of pay twice that of normal
    double-time Tweet Definition of double-time Like Definition of double-time on Facebook
    verb (double-tim, ing)
    1. (intransitive) (military) to march at double time.
    2. (transitive) (military) to order troops to march at double time.
    draft Tweet Definition of draft Like Definition of draft on Facebook
    noun
    1. an early version of a written work
      • I have to revise the first draft of my term paper.
        1. a preliminary sketch, rough outline
        2. Depth of water needed to float ship also spelled draught.
        3. a current of air, usually coming into a room or vehicle also spelled draught.
        4. a cheque, an order for money to be paid
        5. an amount of liquid that is drunk in one swallow also spelled draught.
      • She took a deep draught from the bottle of water.
        1. conscription, the system of forcing people to serve in the military
      • He left the country to avoid the draft.
        1. (sports) a system of assigning rookie players to professional sports teams
    adjective
    1. Referring to drinks on tap as opposed to bottled. (draft beers)
    draftee Tweet Definition of draftee Like Definition of draftee on Facebook
    noun
    1. One who is drafted into a military service. Meaning a person who is taken into a draft and classifed as to military status. Induction is the process of activating a draftee or a volunteer .
    2. An inductee; a conscript.
    dragon Tweet Definition of dragon Like Definition of dragon on Facebook
    noun
    1. A serpentine legendary creature
    1. (Western) A gigantic beast, typically reptilian with leathery bat-like wings, lion-like claws, scaly skin and a serpent-like tail, often with fiery breath.
      • c.1900 " w:Edith Nesbit, Edith Nesbit, s:The Last of the Dragons, The Last of the Dragons
      • :But as every well-brought-up prince was expected to kill a , and rescue a princess, the dragons grew fewer and fewer till it was often quite hard for a princess to find a dragon to be rescued from.
      • (Eastern) A large snake-like lizard with the eyes of a hare, the horns of a stag, and the claws of a tiger
      • 1913 " w:Sax Rohmer, Sax Rohmer, s:The Insidious Dr. Fu Manchu, The Insidious Dr. Fu Manchu, ch XIII
      • :These tapestries were magnificently figured with golden dragons; and as the serpentine bodies gleamed and shimmered in the increasing radiance, each , I thought, intertwined its glittering coils more closely with those of another.
        1. A large reptile, especially a Komodo dragon.
        2. The constellation Draco.
      • 1605 " w:William Shakespeare, William Shakespeare, s:The Tragedy of King Lear, King Lear, i 2
      • :My father compounded with my mother vnder the Dragons taile, and my nativity was vnder Vrsa Maior.
        1. (pejorative) An unpleasant woman; a harridan.
        She"s a bit of a .
    dragonfly Tweet Definition of dragonfly Like Definition of dragonfly on Facebook
    noun
    1. An insect of the suborder Anisoptera with four long transparent wings held perpendicular to a long body.
    dragoon Tweet Definition of dragoon Like Definition of dragoon on Facebook
    noun
    1. (military) horse soldier; cavalryman, that use horses for mobility, but fight dismounted.
    2. A carrier of a dragon musket.
    verbto dragoon
    1. to force someone into doing something; to coerce
    Drake Tweet Definition of Drake Like Definition of Drake on Facebook
    proper noun
    1. A surname, notably of Sir Francis Drake (1540-1596).
    2. (given name, male), transferred use of the surname, or directly from the word drake.
    dreadnought Tweet Definition of dreadnought Like Definition of dreadnought on Facebook
    noun
    1. a battleship in which most of the firepower is concentrated in large guns that are of the same caliber.
    drift Tweet Definition of drift Like Definition of drift on Facebook
    noun
    1. The act or motion of drifting; the force which impels or drives; an overpowering influence or impulse.
    2. A place, also known as a ford, along a river where the water is shallow enough to permit oxen or sheep to be driven to the opposite side.
    3. Course or direction along which anything is driven; setting.
    4. The tendency of an act, argument, course of conduct, or the like; object aimed at or intended; intention; hence, also, import or meaning of a sentence or discourse; aim.
    5. That which is driven, forced, or urged along
    6. Anything driven at random.
    7. A mass of matter which has been driven or forced onward together in a body, or thrown together in a heap, etc., esp. by wind or water; as, a drift of snow, of ice, of sand, and the like.
    8. A drove or flock, as of cattle, sheep, birds.
    9. The horizontal thrust or pressure of an arch or vault upon the abutments.
    10. A collection of loose earth and rocks, or boulders, which have been distributed over large portions of the earth's surface, especially in latitudes north of forty degrees, by the agency of ice.
    11. In South Africa, a ford in a river.
    12. A slightly tapered tool of steel for enlarging or shaping a hole in metal, by being forced or driven into or through it; a broach.
    13. A tool used in driving down compactly the composition contained in a rocket, or like firework.
    14. A deviation from the line of fire, peculiar to oblong projectiles.
    15. A passage driven or cut between shaft and shaft; a driftway; a small subterranean gallery; an adit or tunnel.
    16. The distance through which a current flows in a given time.
    17. The angle which the line of a ship's motion makes with the meridian, in drifting.
    18. The distance to which a vessel is carried off from her desired course by the wind, currents, or other causes.
    19. The place in a deep-waisted vessel where the sheer is raised and the rail is cut off, and usually terminated with a scroll, or driftpiece.
    20. The distance between the two blocks of a tackle.
    21. The difference between the size of a bolt and the hole into which it is driven, or between the circumference of a hoop and that of the mast on which it is to be driven.
    22. A sideways movement of the ball through the air, when bowled by a spin bowler.
    23. Driftwood, driftwood included in flotsam washed up onto the beach.
    24. Driftless Area, Drift (see Wikipedia). The material left behind by the retreat of continenal glaciers. It buries former river valleys and creates young river valleys. The Diftless Area, a geographical area of North America, was unglaciated for the past 510 million years. Mass noun.
    verb
    1. To move slowly, pushed by currents of water, air, etc
    The boat drifted away from the shore.
    The balloon was drifting in the breeze.
    1. To move haphazardly without any destination.
    ''He drifted from town to town, never settling down.
    1. To deviate gently from the intended direction of travel.
    ''This car tends to drift left at high speeds
    drill Tweet Definition of drill Like Definition of drill on Facebook
    noun
    1. A tool used to remove material so as to create a hole, typically by plunging a rotating cutting bit into a stationary workpiece.
    Wear safety glasses when operating an electric drill.
    1. The portion of a drilling tool that drives the bit
    Use a drill with a wire brush to remove any rust or buildup.
    1. An activity done as an exercise or practice (especially a military exercise)
    Regular fire drills can ensure that everyone knows how to exit safely in an emergency.
    1. A strong, durable cotton fabric with a strong bias (diagonal) in the weave.
    verb
    1. To create a hole by removing material with a drill (1)
    Drill a small hole to start the screw in the right direction.
    1. To practice, especially in a military context
    They drilled daily to learn the routine exactly.
    1. To repeat an idea frequently in order to encourage someone to remember it
    The instructor drilled into us the importance of reading the instructions.
    1. To investigate or examine something in more detail or at a different level
    Drill deeper and you may find the underlying assumptions faulty.
    1. (ergative) To cause one's subordinates to drill (2)
    The sergeant was up by 6:00 every morning, drilling his troops.
    drive Tweet Definition of drive Like Definition of drive on Facebook
    noun
    1. A trip made in a motor vehicle
    It was a long .
    1. A driveway
    The mansion had a long, tree-lined .
    1. A motor that does not take fuel, but instead depends on a mechanism that stores potential energy for subsequent use:
    Some old model trains have clockwork drives.
    1. (computers) A mass-storage device; as, a disk drive, a DVD drive, a flash drive''
    2. Self-motivation; ability coupled with ambition:
    ''Crassus had wealth and wit, but Pompey had and Caesar as much again.
    1. (military) A sustained advance in the face of the enemy to take a strategic objective:
    Napoleon's on Moscow was as determined as it was disastrous.
    1. (golf) A stroke made with a driver
    2. (baseball) A ball struck in a flat trajectory (also called line drive)
    3. A type of public roadway.
    Beverly Hills" most famous street is Rodeo .
    1. (psychology) desire, Desire or interest.
    2. (cricket) A type of shot played by swinging the bat in a vertical arc, through the line of the ball, and hitting it along the ground, normally between cover and midwicket.
    verb (drives, driving, drove, driven)
    1. (defn, English)
    dry run Tweet Definition of dry run Like Definition of dry run on Facebook
    noun
    1. (idiom) A practice; a rehearsal.
      They did a of the demonstration before showing it to the CEO.
    duck Tweet Definition of duck Like Definition of duck on Facebook
    noun
    1. An aquatic bird of the family Anatidae, having a flat bill and webbed feet.
    2. Specifically, an adult female female duck; contrasted with drake and with duckling.
    3. The flesh of a duck used as food.
    4. (cricket) A batsman's score of zero after getting out. (short for duck's egg, since the digit "0" is round like an egg.)
    5. (UK, especially East of the Pennines) Dear, Mate (informal way of addressing a friend or stranger).
    Ay up duck, ow'a'tha?
    1. (slang) A playing card with the rank of two.
    2. A tightly-woven cotton fabric used as sailcloth.
      • 1912, Katherine Mansfield, "The Woman At The Store", from "Selected Short Stories":
        He was dressed in a Jaeger vest"a pair of blue trousers, fastened round the waist with a plaited leather belt.
    verb
    1. (intransitive) To lower the head in order to prevent it from being struck by something.
    2. (transitive) To lower (something) into water.
    3. (transitive) To lower (the head) in order to prevent it from being struck by something.
    4. (transitive) To try to evade doing something.
    dud Tweet Definition of dud Like Definition of dud on Facebook
    noun (plural: duds)
    1. A broken or nonfunctional device that does not perform its intended function, such as a bomb.
    2. (obsolete) Clothes, now always used in plural form duds.
    dumdum Tweet Definition of dumdum Like Definition of dumdum on Facebook
    noun
    1. A bullet, with a soft nose, that expands upon impact to cause a gaping wound
    dummy Tweet Definition of dummy Like Definition of dummy on Facebook
    noun (dummies)
    1. A silent person; a person who does not talk.
    2. An unintelligent person.
    • Don't be such a !
      1. A figure of a person or animal used by a ventriloquist.
      2. Something constructed with the size and form of a human, to be used in place of a person.
    To understand the effects of the accident, we dropped a from the rooftop.
    1. A deliberately nonfunctional device or tool used in place of a functional one.
    The hammer and drill in the display are dummies.
    1. (context, Australia, UK) A pacifier.
    The baby wants its .
    1. (bridge) The partner of the winning bidder, who shows his or her hand.
    2. A bodily gesture meant to fool an opposing player in sport; feints.
    3. (linguistics) A word serving only to make a construction grammatical.
    The pronoun "it" in "It's a mystery why this happened" is a .
    1. (complang) An unused parameter or value.
  • If <code>flag1</code> is false, the other parameters are dummies.
  • verb (dummies, dummying, dummied)
    1. To make a mock-up or prototype version of something, without some or all off its intended functionality.
      The carpenters dummied some props for the rehearsals.
    duster Tweet Definition of duster Like Definition of duster on Facebook
    noun
    1. An object, now especially a cloth, used for dusting surfaces etc.
    2. Someone who dusts.