[ dih-skrahy ]
/ dɪˈskraɪ /

verb (used with object), de·scried, de·scry·ing.

to see (something unclear or distant) by looking carefully; discern; espy: The lookout descried land.
to discover; perceive; detect.

Origin of descry

1250–1300; Middle English descrien < Old French de(s)crïer to proclaim, decry. See dis-1, cry

Related forms

de·scri·er, nounun·de·scried, adjectiveun·de·scry·ing, adjective

Can be confused

decry descry (see synonym study at decry) Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for descry

British Dictionary definitions for descry


/ (dɪˈskraɪ) /

verb -scries, -scrying or -scried (tr)

to discern or make out; catch sight of
to discover by looking carefully; detect

Derived Forms

descrier, noun

Word Origin for descry

C14: from Old French descrier to proclaim, decry
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