detective

[ dih-tek-tiv ]
/ dɪˈtɛk tɪv /

noun

a member of the police force or a private investigator whose function is to obtain information and evidence, as of offenses against the law.

adjective

of or relating to detection or detectives: a detective story.
serving to detect; detecting: various detective devices.

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WHO SAID IT: A QUIZ ON PRESIDENTIAL WIT AND WISDOM

Think you know your presidents? Take this quiz and see if you can match the style, wit, and ideology of these memorable lines to the right POTUS.
Question 1 of 9
“I do believe that the buck stops here, that I cannot rely upon public opinion polls to tell me what is right. I do believe that right makes might and that if I am wrong, 10 angels swearing I was right would make no difference.”

Origin of detective

First recorded in 1830–40; detect + -ive
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for detective

British Dictionary definitions for detective

detective
/ (dɪˈtɛktɪv) /

noun

  1. a police officer who investigates crimes
  2. See private detective
  3. (as modifier)a detective story

adjective

used in or serving for detection
serving to detect
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