\ˈdek \

Definition of deck 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a platform in a ship serving usually as a structural element and forming the floor for its compartments

2 : something resembling the deck of a ship: such as

a : a story or tier of a building (such as a sports stadium) the upper deck

b : the roadway of a bridge

c : a flat floored roofless area adjoining a house

d : the lid of the compartment at the rear of the body of an automobile also : the compartment

e : a layer of clouds

3a : a pack of playing cards

b : a packet of narcotics

4 : tape deck

on deck

1 : ready for duty

2 : next in line : next in turn



Definition of deck (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 obsolete : cover

2a : to clothe in a striking or elegant manner : array decked out in furs

b : decorate deck the halls with boughs of hollyEnglish carol

c : to portray or present with embellishments

3 [ 1deck ] : to furnish with or as if with a deck

4 [ 1deck ] : to knock down forcibly : floor decked him with one punch

Keep scrolling for more

Choose the Right Synonym for deck


adorn, decorate, ornament, embellish, beautify, deck, garnish mean to enhance the appearance of something by adding something unessential. adorn implies an enhancing by something beautiful in itself. a diamond necklace adorned her neck decorate suggests relieving plainness or monotony by adding beauty of color or design. decorate a birthday cake ornament and embellish imply the adding of something extraneous, ornament stressing the heightening or setting off of the original a white house ornamented with green shutters , embellish often stressing the adding of superfluous or adventitious ornament. embellish a page with floral borders beautify adds to embellish a suggestion of counterbalancing plainness or ugliness. will beautify the grounds with flower beds deck implies the addition of something that contributes to gaiety, splendor, or showiness. a house all decked out for Christmas garnish suggests decorating with a small final touch and is used especially in referring to the serving of food. an entrée garnished with parsley

Examples of deck in a Sentence


We stood on the deck and watched dolphins swim near the ship. A number of passengers had come on deck. a seat on the streetcar's top deck a cabin on B deck We sat in the lower deck. We ate out on the deck.


We spent hours decking the chapel with flowers before the wedding. He decked him with one punch.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The woman then climbed down eight meters to the observation deck, where she was taken into custody. Casey Quackenbush, Time, "Woman Who Climbed the Statue of Liberty on the Fourth of July Has Been Arrested," 5 July 2018 The resort also is starting a daily yoga class on a mountainside observation deck, at an elevation of more than 9,000 feet. Hugo Martin,, "Another weak snow season brings zip lines, yoga, cycling to California resorts this summer," 29 June 2018 The 20-by-60 foot motorless barge consisting of a heavy timber deck atop steel pontoons launched over 100 explosives from lift charges, or fiberglass gun barrels, that eject the balls of fireworks that explode high above the lake. Julia Sclafani, sacbee, "'Lights on the Lake': Barge catches fire after Tahoe fireworks spectacular," 5 July 2018 The project will include about 315 apartment units, approximately 6,000 square feet of commercial space, and a parking deck. Karen Huppertz, ajc, "Sugar Hill approves design plan for mixed-use development," 20 June 2018 Outside, the multi-level deck and patio is festooned with flowering planters and railroad-themed accents. Philip Potempa, Daily Southtown, "Guide to outdoor dining in Chicago suburbs: Flossmoor Station and Brewery," 7 July 2018 If this imbalance were limited to a single chamber of the legislature, or a single election cycle, the Democrats’ frequent carping about a stacked electoral deck might sound like sour grapes. The Economist, "America’s electoral system gives the Republicans advantages over Democrats," 12 July 2018 At their core, e-scooter companies promise to do what any mode of transit does: Get you from point A to point B, this time on a slim foot-deck that carries you at speeds up to 15 mph. Madeline Buxton,, "How Scooters Became A Go-To Instagram Prop — & The Next Transportation Revolution," 12 July 2018 Apart from the idyllic surroundings, the centerpiece of the home is the cathedral ceiling living room, which boasts a wall of windows that opens up to a deck overlooking the deep green landscape. Alex Bazeley, Curbed, "18th-century mill house in lush Connecticut backwoods asks $995K," 11 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The Mad Tea Party, Pirates of The Caribbean, and Space Mountain will be decked out with new lighting, effects, and/or soundtracks. Sienna Fantozzi, House Beautiful, "How To Have The Most Spooktacular Halloween At Disney World," 11 July 2018 Decorative lanterns hung from the glamorous clear top frame tent, which was decked with couches, love seats, and array of tables and chairs. Alix Strauss, New York Times, "Worthy of a Romance Novel, With a Touch of Mystery," 29 June 2018 Granted, there were plenty of out-and-proud performers and attendees — including Amandla Stenberg, Lena Waithe, and Janelle Monáe, who was fully decked out in rainbow herself., "Did You Notice All The Rainbow Hair At The BET Awards?," 25 June 2018 Bars and restaurants from West Palm Beach to Fort Lauderdale and Miami will be decked out in team banners and club jerseys for the next month and a half, offering cheap drinks and food specials to stoke futbol fever. Steven Goff,, "U.S., Mexico and Canada win joint bid for 2026 World Cup; Hard Rock Stadium could be host site," 13 June 2018 The always-dapper Roth—decked out in Givenchy haute couture black tie—was impeccably dressed for the occasion in a custom midnight-blue suit. Maria Ward, Vogue, "Inside the Official Tony Awards After-Party at the Plaza," 11 June 2018 Primary-school children decked out in traditional costumes sing songs about their glory. The Economist, "What life is like for ordinary North Koreans," 26 May 2018 Passengers can take in the sights from the observation car, which is decked out in floor to ceiling windows and comfortable swivel chairs. Jessica Leigh Mattern, Country Living, "The Coast Starlight Is the Most Beautiful Train Ride in America," 2 Aug. 2017 One photo, taken on June 30, 1998, shows Kenny G playing the saxophone for two girls decked out in scrunchies and tie-dye; in the background, a man cups the cheeks of a woman grinning from ear to ear. Elena Weissmann, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Summerfest 1998 featured scrunchies, tie-dye and Widespread Panic," 28 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'deck.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of deck


1509, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1513, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for deck


Middle English dekke covering of a ship, from Middle Dutch *dec covering, probably from Middle Low German vordeck, from vordecken to cover, from vor- for- + decken to cover; akin to Old High German decchen to cover — more at thatch


Dutch dekken to cover; akin to Old High German decchen

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about deck

Statistics for deck

Last Updated

10 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for deck

The first known use of deck was in 1509

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for deck



English Language Learners Definition of deck

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a flat surface that forms the main outside floor of a boat or ship

: one of the levels on a bus, ship, etc.

: one of the seating levels in a sports stadium



English Language Learners Definition of deck (Entry 2 of 2)

: to decorate (something)

: to knock (someone) down by hitting very hard


\ˈdek \

Kids Definition of deck

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a floor that goes from one side of a ship to the other

2 : something like the deck of a ship the deck of a house

3 : a pack of playing cards


decked; decking

Kids Definition of deck (Entry 2 of 2)

: to dress or decorate especially in a fancy way The house is decked out for the holidays.

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on deck

What made you want to look up deck? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


playful or foolish behavior

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Autumn Words of the Day 2018

  • a-top-down-image-of-road-through-an-autumn-forest
  • Which is a synonym of fugacious?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!