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AWOL

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

[pronounced as initials or ey-wawl, ey-wol]
adjective, adverb
  1. away from military duties without permission, but without the intention of deserting.
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noun
  1. a soldier or other military person who is absent from duty without leave.
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Idioms
  1. go AWOL,
    1. to depart from military duty without leave.
    2. to absent oneself without explanation.
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Origin of AWOL

1915–20; A(bsent) W(ith)o(ut) L(eave)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for go awol

AWOL

A.W.O.L.

adjective
  1. military absent without leave; absent from one's post or duty without official permission but without intending to desert
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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 go awol

awol

adj.

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.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

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.

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The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with go awol

AWOL

see absent without leave.

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The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.