• synonyms


[ree-kuh-noi-ter, rek-uh-]
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verb (used with object)
  1. to inspect, observe, or survey (the enemy, the enemy's strength or position, a region, etc.) in order to gain information for military purposes.
  2. to examine or survey (a region, area, etc.) for engineering, geological, or other purposes.
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verb (used without object)
  1. to make a reconnaissance.
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Origin of reconnoiter

1700–10; < French reconnoître (now obsolete) to explore, Middle French reconoistre. See recognize
Related formsre·con·noi·ter·er, nounun·re·con·noi·tered, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for reconnoiter

look, inquire, probe, explore, examine, scout, survey

Examples from the Web for reconnoiter

Historical Examples of reconnoiter

  • There was no cranny in the rocks too small for them to reconnoiter with caution.

    Riders of the Silences

    John Frederick

  • While the crew rested, he climbed the face of a rocky cliff to reconnoiter.

  • We are to reconnoiter along this road and down toward that bridge (pointing).

  • Presently a Persian on horseback rode up to reconnoiter the pass.

    Children's Literature

    Charles Madison Curry

  • There appeared to be no one on this side, and Lovejoy stepped forward to reconnoiter.

    Historic Adventures

    Rupert S. Holland

Word Origin and History for reconnoiter


also reconnoitre, 1707, "make a survey," from older French reconnoitre (Modern French reconnaître), from Old French reconoistre "to identify" (see recognize).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper