verb (used with object)
to discover or catch (a person) in the performance of some act: to detect someone cheating.
to discover the existence of: to detect the odor of gas.
to find out the true character or activity of: to detect a spy.
- to rectify alternating signal currents in a radio receiver.
- to demodulate.
Origin of detect
1400–50; late Middle English < Latin dētēctus (past participle of dētegere), equivalent to dē- de- + teg(ere) to cover + -tus past participle suffix
2. See learn.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
to perceive or noticeto detect a note of sarcasm
to discover the existence or presence of (esp something likely to elude observation)to detect alcohol in the blood
to extract information from (an electromagnetic wave)
obsolete to reveal or expose (a crime, criminal, etc)
Word Origin for detect
C15: from Latin dētectus uncovered, from dētegere to uncover, from de- + tegere to cover
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
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper