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or awol, A.W.O.L. a.w.o.l

[pronounced as initials or ey-wawl, ey-wol] /pronounced as initials or ˈeɪ wɔl, ˈeɪ wɒl/
adjective, adverb
away from military duties without permission, but without the intention of deserting.
a soldier or other military person who is absent from duty without leave.
go AWOL,
  1. to depart from military duty without leave.
  2. to absent oneself without explanation.
Origin of AWOL
1915-20; A(bsent) W(ith)o(ut) L(eave) Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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British Dictionary definitions for go awol


(military) absent without leave; absent from one's post or duty without official permission but without intending to desert
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
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Word Origin and History for go awol



also a.w.o.l., military initialism for absent without leave. The -o- seems to be there mostly so the initialism can be pronounced as a word. In U.S. military use at least from World War II, popular use by 1960.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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go awol in Culture
go AWOL [(aye-wahl)]

To take unauthorized time off from work, school, or other duties: “Let's go AWOL and catch a baseball game this afternoon.” AWOL is an acronym for “absent without leave [permission].” The term originated with the military during World War I.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Slang definitions & phrases for go awol



Absent without leave


A person who is absent without leave (Armed forces fr WWI)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Idioms and Phrases with go awol
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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