Law Dictionary – Legal Words ( D )

daring –  Brave.

darkling –  Blindly.

Darwinism –  The doctrine that natural selection has been the prime cause of evolution of higher forms.

dastard –  A base coward.

datum –  A premise, starting-point, or given fact.

dauntless –  Fearless.

day-man –  A day-laborer.

dead-heat –  A race in which two or more competitors come out even, and there is no winner.

dearth –  Scarcity, as of something customary, essential ,or desirable.

death’s-head –  A human skull as a symbol of death.

debase –  To lower in character or virtue.

debatable –  Subject to contention or dispute.

debonair –  Having gentle or courteous bearing or manner.

debut –  A first appearance in society or on the stage.

decagon –  A figure with ten sides and ten angles.

decagram –  A weight of 10 grams.

decaliter –  A liquid and dry measure of 10 liters.

decalogue –  The ten commandments.

Decameron –  A volume consisting of ten parts or books.

decameter –  A length of ten meters.

decamp –  To leave suddenly or unexpectedly.

decapitate –  To behead.

decapod –  Ten-footed or ten-armed.

decasyllable –  A line of ten syllables.

deceit –  Falsehood.

deceitful –  Fraudulent.

deceive –  To mislead by or as by falsehood.

decency –  Moral fitness.

decent –  Characterized by propriety of conduct, speech, manners, or dress.

deciduous –  Falling off at maturity as petals after flowering, fruit when ripe, etc.

decimal –  Founded on the number 10.

decimate –  To destroy a measurable or large proportion of.

decipher –  To find out the true words or meaning of, as something hardly legible.

decisive ad. Conclusive.

declamation –  A speech recited or intended for recitation from memory in public.

declamatory –  A full and formal style of utterance.

declarative –  Containing a formal, positive, or explicit statement or affirmation.

declension –  The change of endings in nouns and –  to express their different relations of gender.

decorate –  To embellish.

decorous –  Suitable for the occasion or circumstances.

decoy –  Anything that allures, or is intended to allures into danger or temptation.

decrepit –  Enfeebled, as by old age or some chronic infirmity.

dedication –  The voluntary consecration or relinquishment of something to an end or cause.

deduce –  To derive or draw as a conclusion by reasoning from given premises or principles.

deface –  To mar or disfigure the face or external surface of.

defalcate –  To cut off or take away, as a part of something.

defamation –  Malicious and groundless injury done to the reputation or good name of another.

defame –  To slander.

default –  The neglect or omission of a legal requirement.

defendant –  A person against whom a suit is brought.

defensible –  Capable of being maintained or justified.

defensive –  Carried on in resistance to aggression.

defer –  To delay or put off to some other time.

deference –  Respectful submission or yielding, as to another’s opinion, wishes, or judgment.

defiant –  Characterized by bold or insolent opposition.

deficiency –  Lack or insufficiency.

deficient –  Not having an adequate or proper supply or amount.

definite –  Having an exact signification or positive meaning.

deflect –  To cause to turn aside or downward.

deforest –  To clear of forests.

deform –  To disfigure.

deformity –  A disfigurement.

defraud –  To deprive of something dishonestly.

defray –  To make payment for.

degeneracy –  A becoming worse.

degenerate –  To become worse or inferior.

degradation –  Diminution, as of strength or magnitude.

degrade –  To take away honors or position from.

dehydrate –  To deprive of water.

deify –  To regard or worship as a god.

deign –  To deem worthy of notice or account.

deist –  One who believes in God, but denies supernatural revelation.

deity –  A god, goddess, or divine person.

deject –  To dishearten.

dejection –  Melancholy.

delectable –  Delightful to the taste or to the senses.

delectation –  Delight.

deleterious –  Hurtful, morally or physically.

delicacy –  That which is agreeable to a fine taste.

delineate –  To represent by sketch or diagram.

deliquesce –  To dissolve gradually and become liquid by absorption of moisture from the air.

delirious –  Raving.

delude –  To mislead the mind or judgment of.

deluge –  To overwhelm with a flood of water.

delusion –  Mistaken conviction, especially when more or less enduring.

demagnetize –  To deprive (a magnet) of magnetism.

demagogue –  An unprincipled politician.

demeanor –  Deportment.

demented –  Insane.

demerit –  A mark for failure or bad conduct.

demise –  Death.

demobilize –  To disband, as troops.

demolish –  To annihilate.

demonstrable –  Capable of positive proof.

demonstrate –  To prove indubitably.

demonstrative –  Inclined to strong exhibition or expression of feeling or thoughts.

demonstrator –  One who proves in a convincing and conclusive manner.

demulcent –  Any application soothing to an irritable surface

demurrage –  the detention of a vessel beyond the specified time of sailing.

dendroid –  Like a tree.

dendrology –  The natural history of trees.

denizen –  Inhabitant.

denominate –  To give a name or epithet to.

denomination –  A body of Christians united by a common faith and form of worship and discipline.

denominator –  Part of a fraction which expresses the number of equal parts into which the unit is divided.

denote –  To designate by word or mark.

denouement –  That part of a play or story in which the mystery is cleared up.

denounce –  To point out or publicly accuse as deserving of punishment, censure, or odium.

dentifrice –  Any preparation used for cleaning the teeth.

denude –  To strip the covering from.

denunciation –  The act of declaring an action or person worthy of reprobation or punishment.

deplete –  To reduce or lessen, as by use, exhaustion, or waste.

deplorable –  Contemptible.

deplore –  To regard with grief or sorrow.

deponent –  Laying down.

depopulate –  To remove the inhabitants from.

deport –  To take or send away forcibly, as to a penal colony.

deportment –  Demeanor.

deposition –  Testimony legally taken on interrogatories and reduced to writing, for use as evidence in court.

depositor –  One who makes a deposit, or has an amount deposited.

depository –  A place where anything is kept in safety.

deprave –  To render bad, especially morally bad.

deprecate –  To express disapproval or regret for, with hope for the opposite.

depreciate –  To lessen the worth of.

depreciation –  A lowering in value or an underrating in worth.

depress –  To press down.

depression –  A falling of the spirits.

depth –  Deepness.

derelict –  Neglectful of obligation.

deride –  To ridicule.

derisible –  Open to ridicule.

derision –  Ridicule.

derivation –  That process by which a word is traced from its original root or primitive form and meaning.

derivative –  Coming or acquired from some origin.

derive –  To deduce, as from a premise.

dermatology –  The branch of medical science which relates to the skin and its diseases.

derrick –  An apparatus for hoisting and swinging great weights.

descendant –  One who is descended lineally from another, as a child, grandchild, etc.

descendent –  Proceeding downward.

descent –  The act of moving or going downward.

descry –  To discern.

desert –  To abandon without regard to the welfare of the abandoned

desiccant –  Any remedy which, when applied externally, dries up or absorbs moisture, as that of wounds.

designate –  To select or appoint, as by authority.

desist –  To cease from action.

desistance –  Cessation.

despair –  Utter hopelessness and despondency.

desperado –  One without regard for law or life.

desperate –  Resorted to in a last extremity, or as if prompted by utter despair.

despicable –  Contemptible.

despite prep. In spite of.

despond –  To lose spirit, courage, or hope.

despondent –  Disheartened.

despot –  An absolute and irresponsible monarch.

despotism –  Any severe and strict rule in which the judgment of the governed has little or no part.

destitute –  Poverty-stricken.

desultory –  Not connected with what precedes.

deter –  To frighten away.

deteriorate –  To grow worse.

determinate –  Definitely limited or fixed.

determination –  The act of deciding.

deterrent –  Hindering from action through fear.

detest –  To dislike or hate with intensity.

detract –  To take away in such manner as to lessen value or estimation.

detriment –  Something that causes damage, depreciation, or loss.

detrude –  To push down forcibly.

deviate –  To take a different course.

devilry –  Malicious mischief.

deviltry –  Wanton and malicious mischief.

devious –  Out of the common or regular track.

devise –  To invent.

devout –  Religious.

dexterity –  Readiness, precision, efficiency, and ease in any physical activity or in any mechanical work.

diabolic –  Characteristic of the devil.

diacritical –  Marking a difference.

diagnose –  To distinguish, as a disease, by its characteristic phenomena.

diagnosis –  Determination of the distinctive nature of a disease.

dialect –  Forms of speech collectively that are peculiar to the people of a particular district.

dialectician –  A logician.

dialogue –  A formal conversation in which two or more take part.

diaphanous –  Transparent.

diatomic –  Containing only two atoms.

diatribe –  A bitter or malicious criticism.

dictum –  A positive utterance.

didactic –  Pertaining to teaching.

difference –  Dissimilarity in any respect.

differentia –  Any essential characteristic of a species by reason of which it differs from other species.

differential –  Distinctive.

differentiate –  To acquire a distinct and separate character.

diffidence –  Self-distrust.

diffident –  Affected or possessed with self-distrust.

diffusible –  Spreading rapidly through the system and acting quickly.

diffusion –  Dispersion.

dignitary –  One who holds high rank.

digraph –  A union of two characters representing a single sound.

digress –  To turn aside from the main subject and for a time dwell on some incidental matter.

dilapidated pa. Fallen into decay or partial ruin.

dilate –  To enlarge in all directions.

dilatory –  Tending to cause delay.

dilemma –  A situation in which a choice between opposing modes of conduct is necessary.

dilettante –  A superficial amateur.

diligence –  Careful and persevering effort to accomplish what is undertaken.

dilute –  To make more fluid or less concentrated by admixture with something.

diminution –  Reduction.

dimly –  Obscurely.

diphthong –  The sound produced by combining two vowels in to a single syllable or running together the sounds.

diplomacy –  Tact, shrewdness, or skill in conducting any kind of negotiations or in social matters.

diplomat –  A representative of one sovereign state at the capital or court of another.

diplomatic –  Characterized by special tact in negotiations.

diplomatist –  One remarkable for tact and shrewd management.

disagree –  To be opposite in opinion.

disallow –  To withhold permission or sanction.

disappear –  To cease to exist, either actually or for the time being.

disappoint –  To fail to fulfill the expectation, hope, wish, or desire of.

disapprove –  To regard with blame.

disarm –  To deprive of weapons.

disarrange –  To throw out of order.

disavow –  To disclaim responsibility for.

disavowal –  Denial.

disbeliever –  One who refuses to believe.

disburden –  To disencumber.

disburse –  To pay out or expend, as money from a fund.

discard –  To reject.

discernible –  Perceivable.

disciple –  One who believes the teaching of another, or who adopts and follows some doctrine.

disciplinary –  Having the nature of systematic training or subjection to authority.

discipline –  To train to obedience.

disclaim –  To disavow any claim to, connection with, or responsibility to.

discolor –  To stain.

discomfit –  To put to confusion.

discomfort –  The state of being positively uncomfortable.

disconnect –  To undo or dissolve the connection or association of.

disconsolate –  Grief-stricken.

discontinuance –  Interruption or intermission.

discord –  Absence of harmoniousness.

discountenance –  To look upon with disfavor.

discover –  To get first sight or knowledge of, as something previously unknown or unperceived.

discredit –  To injure the reputation of.

discreet –  Judicious.

discrepant –  Opposite.

discriminate –  To draw a distinction.

discursive –  Passing from one subject to another.

discussion –  Debate.

disenfranchise –  To deprive of any right privilege or power

disengage –  To become detached.

disfavor –  Disregard.

disfigure –  To impair or injure the beauty, symmetry, or appearance of.

dishabille –  Undress or negligent attire.

dishonest –  Untrustworthy.

disillusion –  To disenchant.

disinfect –  To remove or destroy the poison of infectious or contagious diseases.

disinfectant –  A substance used to destroy the germs of infectious diseases.

disinherit –  To deprive of an inheritance.

disinterested –  Impartial.

disjunctive –  Helping or serving to disconnect or separate.

dislocate –  To put out of proper place or order.

dismissal –  Displacement by authority from an office or an employment.

dismount –  To throw down, push off, or otherwise remove from a horse or the like.

disobedience –  Neglect or refusal to comply with an authoritative injunction.

disobedient –  Neglecting or refusing to obey.

disown –  To refuse to acknowledge as one’s own or as connected with oneself.

disparage –  To regard or speak of slightingly.

disparity –  Inequality.

dispel –  To drive away by or as by scattering in different directions.

dispensation –  That which is bestowed on or appointed to one from a higher power.

displace –  To put out of the proper or accustomed place.

dispossess –  To deprive of actual occupancy, especially of real estate.

disputation –  Verbal controversy.

disqualify –  To debar.

disquiet –  To deprive of peace or tranquility.

disregard –  To take no notice of.

disreputable –  Dishonorable or disgraceful.

disrepute –  A bad name or character.

disrobe –  To unclothe.

disrupt –  To burst or break asunder.

dissatisfy –  To displease.

dissect –  To cut apart or to pieces.

dissection –  The act or operation of cutting in pieces, specifically of a plant or an animal.

dissemble –  To hide by pretending something different.

disseminate –  To sow or scatter abroad, as seed is sown.

dissension –  Angry or violent difference of opinion.

dissent –  Disagreement.

dissentient –  One who disagrees.

dissentious –  Contentious.

dissertation –  Thesis.

disservice –  An ill turn.

dissever –  To divide.

dissimilar –  Different.

dissipate –  To disperse or disappear.

dissipation –  The state of being dispersed or scattered.

dissolute –  Lewd.

dissolution –  A breaking up of a union of persons.

dissolve –  To liquefy or soften, as by heat or moisture.

dissonance –  Discord.

dissonant –  Harsh or disagreeable in sound.

dissuade –  To change the purpose or alter the plans of by persuasion, counsel, or pleading.

dissuasion –  The act of changing the purpose of or altering the plans of through persuasion, or pleading.

disyllable –  A word of two syllables.

distemper –  A disease or malady.

distend –  To stretch out or expand in every direction.

distensible –  Capable of being stretched out or expanded in every direction.

distention –  Expansion.

distill –  To extract or produce by vaporization and condensation.

distillation –  Separation of the more volatile parts of a substance from those less volatile.

distiller –  One occupied in the business of distilling alcoholic liquors.

distinction –  A note or designation of honor, officially recognizing superiority or success in studies.

distort –  To twist into an unnatural or irregular form.

distrain –  To subject a person to distress.

distrainor –  One who subjects a person to distress.

distraught –  Bewildered.

distrust –  Lack of confidence in the power, wisdom, or good intent of any person.

disunion –  Separation of relations or interests.

diurnal –  Daily.

divagation –  Digression.

divergent –  Tending in different directions.

diverse –  Capable of various forms.

diversion –  Pastime.

diversity –  Dissimilitude.

divert –  To turn from the accustomed course or a line of action already established.

divertible –  Able to be turned from the accustomed course or a line of action already established.

divest –  To strip, specifically of clothes, ornaments, or accouterments or disinvestment.

divination –  The pretended forecast of future events or discovery of what is lost or hidden.

divinity –  The quality or character of being godlike.

divisible –  Capable of being separated into parts.

divisor –  That by which a number or quantity is divided.

divulge –  To tell or make known, as something previously private or secret.

divulgence –  A divulging.

docile –  Easy to manage.

docket –  The registry of judgments of a court.

doe –  The female of the deer.

dogma –  A statement of religious faith or duty formulated by a body claiming authority.

dogmatic –  Making statements without argument or evidence.

dogmatize –  To make positive assertions without supporting them by argument or evidence.

doleful –  Melancholy.

dolesome –  Melancholy.

dolor –  Lamentation.

dolorous –  Expressing or causing sorrow or pain.

domain –  A sphere or field of action or interest.

domesticity –  Life in or fondness for one’s home and family.

domicile –  The place where one lives.

dominance –  Ascendancy.

dominant –  Conspicuously prominent.

dominate –  To influence controllingly.

domination –  Control by the exercise of power or constituted authority.

domineer –  To rule with insolence or unnecessary annoyance.

donate –  To bestow as a gift, especially for a worthy cause.

donator –  One who makes a donation or present.

donee –  A person to whom a donation is made.

donor –  One who makes a donation or present.

dormant –  Being in a state of or resembling sleep.

doublet –  One of a pair of like things.

doubly –  In twofold degree or extent.

dowry –  The property which a wife brings to her husband in marriage.

drachma –  A modern and an ancient Greek coin.

dragnet –  A net to be drawn along the bottom of the water.

dragoon –  In the British army, a cavalryman.

drainage –  The means of draining collectively, as a system of conduits, trenches, pipes, etc.

dramatist –  One who writes plays.

dramatize –  To relate or represent in a dramatic or theatrical manner.

drastic –  Acting vigorously.

drought –  Dry weather, especially when so long continued as to cause vegetation to wither.

drowsy –  Heavy with sleepiness.

drudgery –  Hard and constant work in any menial or dull occupation.

dubious –  Doubtful.

duckling –  A young duck.

ductile –  Capable of being drawn out, as into wire or a thread.

duet –  A composition for two voices or instruments.

dun –  To make a demand or repeated demands on for payment.

duplex –  Having two parts.

duplicity –  Double-dealing.

durance –  Confinement.

duration –  The period of time during which anything lasts.

duteous –  Showing submission to natural superiors.

dutiable –  Subject to a duty, especially a customs duty.

dutiful –  Obedient.

dwindle –  To diminish or become less.

dyne –  The force which, applied to a mass of one gram for 1 second, would give it a velocity of 1 cm/s.

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