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dishevel

[dih-shev-uh l]
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verb (used with object), di·shev·eled, di·shev·el·ing or (especially British) di·shev·elled, di·shev·el·ling.
  1. to let down, as hair, or wear or let hang in loose disorder, as clothing.
  2. to cause untidiness and disarray in: The wind disheveled the papers on the desk.
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Origin of dishevel

First recorded in 1590–1600; back formation from disheveled
Related formsdi·shev·el·ment, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for disheveling

dishevel

verb -els, -elling or -elled or US -els, -eling or -eled
  1. to disarrange (the hair or clothes) of (someone)
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Derived Formsdishevelment, noun

Word Origin

C15: back formation from dishevelled
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for disheveling

dishevel

v.

originally an adjective, "bare-headed," late 14c., variant (with muted final -e) of dishevely, from Old French deschevele "bare-headed, with shaven head," past participle adjective from descheveler "to disarrange the hair," from des- "apart" (see dis-) + chevel "hair," from Latin capillus "hair" (see capillary). Of the hair, "dissheveled," mid-15c. OED says use as a verb is chiefly a back-formation from disheveled.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper