- an individual or minute part; an item or particular.
- particulars collectively; minutiae.
- attention to or treatment of a subject in individual or minute parts: to postpone detail and concentrate on a subject as a whole.
- intricate, finely wrought decoration.
- Engineering. detail drawing.
- any small section of a larger structure or whole, considered as a unit.
- an appointment or assignment, as of a small group or an officer, for a special task.
- the party or person so selected: the kitchen detail.
- a particular assignment of duty.
- the property of an image or of a method of image production to make small, closely spaced image elements individually distinguishable.
- to relate or report with complete particulars; tell fully and distinctly.
- to mention one by one; specify; list: He detailed the events leading up to the robbery.
- Military. to appoint or assign for some particular duty: We were detailed to patrol the border.
- to provide with intricate, finely wrought decoration: lingerie detailed with lace and embroidery.
- to thoroughly clean (a vehicle or part of a vehicle) and do minor repairs to improve its appearance: We detail the wheels and chrome to remove the rust.
- in detail, item by item; with particulars: The résumé stated his qualifications in detail.
Origin of detail
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for details
The families announced along with it that they had entered a “phase of silence” surrounding the details of the new deal.A Sunni-Shia Love Story Imperiled by al Qaeda
December 26, 2014
The industry lore is downright jaw-dropping in the details of the cons known as “brick-in-box” returns.The Insane $11 Billion Scam at Retailers’ Return Desks
December 19, 2014
Everything you need to know about the U.S.-Cuba thaw, from the details of the deal to when you can book your ticket to Havana.Up To Speed: The Cuba Embargo
December 18, 2014
The creative team behind the new My Lai project is working out the details for set design.The My Lai Massacre Inspires an Opera
December 17, 2014
Translators—many of whom came by boat themselves—work through the crowds with Italian authorities to take down names and details.Inside the Smuggling Networks Flooding Europe with Refugees
Barbie Latza Nadeau
December 15, 2014
His grasp of details delighted Uncle Peter and surprised Coplen.The Spenders
Harry Leon Wilson
When he entered he had only to pause a moment before he had all the details clearly in mind.Way of the Lawless
In the beginning it was incredulous about some of the details.K
Mary Roberts Rinehart
When the details were explained to him Mike declared, emphatically, that some one had got at the mare.Thoroughbreds
W. A. Fraser
There are other details I might mention—that cane, for instance—but let it pass.Chip, of the Flying U
B. M. Bower
- an item or smaller part that is considered separately; particular
- an item or circumstance that is insignificant or unimportantpassengers' comfort was regarded as a detail
- treatment of or attention to items or particularsthis essay includes too much detail
- items collectively; particulars
- a small or accessory section or element in a painting, building, statue, etc, esp when considered in isolation
- the act of assigning personnel for a specific duty, esp a fatigue
- the personnel selected
- the duty or assignment
- go into detail to include all or most particulars
- in detail including all or most particulars or items thoroughly
- to list or relate fully
- military to select (personnel) for a specific duty
- to decorate or elaborate (carving, etc) with fine delicate drawing or designs
Word Origin and History for details
1630s, from French détailler "cut up in pieces; narrate in particulars," from Old French detaillier, from detail (see detail (n.)). Related: Detailed; detailing.
c.1600, from French détail, from Old French detail "small piece or quantity," literally "a cutting in pieces," from detaillier "cut in pieces," from de- "entirely" (see de-) + taillier "to cut in pieces" (see tailor).
Modern sense is from French en détail "piece by piece, item by item" (as opposed to en gros), a commercial term used where we would today use retail. Military sense is 1708, from notion of "distribution in detail of the daily orders first given in general," including assignment of specific duties.
Idioms and Phrases with details
see in detail.