\ ˈdēd How to pronounce deed (audio) \

Definition of deed

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : something that is done evil deeds did my good deed for the day
2 : a usually illustrious act or action : feat, exploit a hero's daring deeds
3 : the act of performing : action righteous in word and in deed
4 : a signed and usually sealed instrument (see instrument entry 1 sense 4) containing some legal transfer, bargain, or contract gave them the deed to the house


deeded; deeding; deeds

Definition of deed (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to convey or transfer by a signed instrument containing a legal transfer, bargain, or contract : to convey or transfer by deed (see deed entry 1 sense 4) deeded the house to her son

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Other Words from deed


deedless \ ˈdēd-​ləs How to pronounce deedless (audio) \ adjective

Examples of deed in a Sentence

Noun They taught their children to be kind and to do good deeds. News of their heroic deeds spread far and wide. It's too late now. The deed is done. The land was transferred by deed. He gave them the deed to the property. Verb She deeded the house to her children. the philanthropist unexpectedly deeded his entire fortune to the animal shelter
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The exhibit will touch upon madness, mayhem and murder, crimes in the 19th century, famous villains and their evil deeds., "Community News For The Windham Edition," 8 Nov. 2019 Indeed, the story of Sowell became much larger than just his deeds. Eric Heisig, cleveland, "Discovery at Anthony Sowell’s house 10 years ago revealed deeds of notorious Cleveland serial killer," 29 Oct. 2019 Islamic State militants responded by beheading Western captives, beginning with freelance American journalist James Foley, and posting their deeds in gruesome online videos. Zeina Karam, Twin Cities, "Islamic State leader leaves a legacy of terror," 27 Oct. 2019 Islamic State militants responded by beheading Western captives, beginning with freelance American journalist James Foley, and posting their deeds in gruesome online videos. Author: Adam Schreck And Zeina Karam, Anchorage Daily News, "Islamic State leader leaves a legacy of terror," 27 Oct. 2019 Now, Shelby isn't just putting a smile on Zucca's face — the video of his good deed is making countless people happy. Caitlin O'kane, CBS News, "Sanitation worker helps elderly woman every week after witnessing her fall," 23 Oct. 2019 In the second half of 2018, for example, the country’s central bank supported the currency with both word and deed, emphasising the need for stability, buying the yuan offshore and increasing the regulatory cost of speculating against the currency. The Economist, "Why a weakening yuan is rattling markets," 5 Aug. 2019 Instead of elevating abusers to leadership positions in global soccer, FIFA needs to back women’s rights in word and deed, and do a better job of supporting female players, coaches, teams, and fans. Minky Worden, Quartz, "Women soccer players’ biggest challenge is changing FIFA itself," 28 June 2019 But Bill and Jacqueline Bucholz favored something worse if the Giants did the deed. Peter Fimrite,, "Trade MadBum? A mad idea, say Giants fans," 24 July 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb When the city first approved development plans for the Eastmark community in 2008, the developer agreed to build a regional park that would grow with the community and be deeded to the city as a public park as each phase was completed. Alison Steinbach, azcentral, "Here are the latest additions to Eastmark Great Park in Mesa," 4 Nov. 2019 Eighty years ago, counties began deeding 600,000 acres of burned, logged and unproductive forests to the state. oregonlive, "Failing forestry: The $1 billion lawsuit that could decide the fate of Oregon’s state forests," 27 Oct. 2019 Nearly 160 years later, Indian Island was effectively returned to the Wiyot when the city of Eureka deeded more than 200 acres over to tribe during a signing ceremony on Monday. Julia Wick, Los Angeles Times, "Newsletter: Eureka returns an island to a tribe nearly 160 years after a massacre," 22 Oct. 2019 Boulder’s goal is to build or preserve 3,500 middle income homes by 2030, of which 1,000 will deed restricted making them permanently affordable. Pratik Joshi, The Denver Post, "FHA rule change regarding condo loans could allow more buyers to break into Boulder County market," 29 Sep. 2019 Most of the new crop of private parking garages sell their spaces in-house and by way of licenses, which aren’t tracked in real estate databases the way deeded properties are. New York Times, "Private Parking Goes Deluxe," 13 Sep. 2019 Pinney School was built in 1895 and named for textile manufacturer Edwin C. Pinney, who with his wife, Esther, deeded approximately two acres of land to the Town of Stafford after the four-room schoolhouse had been completed. Annie Gentile,, "New Plans Approved For Historic Pinney School," 19 July 2019 The bridge spans Fern Creek on land that developer Walter Rose deeded to the city in 1924 for a park in his Rosearden subdivision. Joy Wallace Dickinson,, "From Burton’s to Buddy, Lawsona’s full of history," 8 Sep. 2019 The federal government already is required to lease or deed vacant federal properties to non-profits for free or to cities to use for shelters or for other aid for homeless people. Los Angeles Times, "L.A. to Trump team’s tour of homeless camps: ‘We’re on it. Show us the money’," 13 Sep. 2019

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

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First Known Use of deed


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1758, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for deed

Noun and Verb

Middle English dede, from Old English dǣd; akin to Old English dōn to do

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Time Traveler for deed

Time Traveler

The first known use of deed was before the 12th century

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Statistics for deed

Last Updated

11 Nov 2019

Cite this Entry

“Deed.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 21 November 2019.

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More Definitions for deed



Financial Definition of deed

What It Is

A deed is an ownership document that entitles its holder to specific rights to a property based on a set of explicit conditions.

How It Works

In most cases, a deed establishes proper ownership of a piece of property such as a home or automobile. The deed grants the holder explicit privileges and rights that may only be exercised under duly expressed conditions. In this respect, a deed's conferment of unique rights or privileges brings with it a unique set of responsibilities.

An example would be a deed of ownership to a home. While the freedom inherent in the deed allows the holder to take many actions regarding the home, he is bound by the conditions of home ownership. For instance, though he may build a balcony on the back of his house, he may not be able to install a high-power speaker system as it could disturb the neighbors.

Why It Matters

A deed sets specific privileges and rights that the holder alone may exercise and it sets rules that render the holder responsible for the consequences of exercising those rights.

Source: Investing Answers


How to pronounce deed (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of deed

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: something that is done : an act or action
: a legal document that shows who owns a building or piece of land



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

US : to give someone ownership of (a building or piece of land) by means of a deed


\ ˈdēd How to pronounce deed (audio) \

Kids Definition of deed

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : something that is done : act a brave deed
2 : a legal document by which a person transfers land or buildings to another


deeded; deeding

Kids Definition of deed (Entry 2 of 2)

: to transfer by a deed He deeded the house to the new owners.

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Legal Definition of deed

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : something done : act sense 1 my free act and deed
2 : a written instrument by which a person transfers ownership of real property to another — see also deliver, grantee, grantor, recording act, registry, title — compare certificate of title

Note: A deed must be properly executed and delivered in order to be effective. Additionally, the grantor must have freely intended to make the transfer at the time of the conveyance. Deeds are recorded at the local registry of deeds to give notice of ownership.

bargain and sale deed
1 : a contract resulting from a bargain between a buyer and a seller of real property that creates a use in the buyer and therefore transfers title to the buyer by operation of law
2 : a deed in which the grantor makes no warranties of title to the grantee
deed-in-lieu \ -​in-​ˈlü \
: deed in lieu of foreclosure in this entry
deed in lieu of foreclosure
: a deed from a mortgagor conveying title to the mortgaged property to the mortgagee in payment of the debt

Note: Deeds in lieu of foreclosure are sometimes used as an alternative to foreclosure.

deed of trust
: an instrument securing a debt in which a debtor conveys the legal ownership of real property to a trustee to be held in trust for the benefit of the creditor or to be sold upon the debtor's default to pay the debt : a mortgage with a power of sale

called also trust deed

master deed
: a deed that submits the land described therein to the provisions of a state's law regarding condominiums and sets out various information (as about the units, common areas, bylaws, and rights of the owners) as required under state law — compare declaration of condominium at declaration sense 4
quitclaim deed
: a deed that grants only whatever title or interest the grantor had to the property without any warranty as to the title
2 : special warranty deed in this entry — compare warranty deed in this entry
sheriff's deed
: a deed given to a buyer of property purchased at a sheriff's sale
special warranty deed
: a deed in which the property transferred is warranted to be free of all liens or encumbrances made by, through, or under the grantor but not otherwise
tax deed
: a deed evidencing the transfer of title acquired by the grantee as purchaser of property at a tax sale — compare tax certificate
trust deed
: deed of trust in this entry
unit deed
: a deed conveying a condominium unit
warranty deed
: a deed warranting that the grantor has a good title free and clear of all encumbrances and will defend the grantee against all claims — compare quitclaim deed and special warranty deed in this entry

Legal Definition of deed (Entry 2 of 2)

: to convey by deed

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More from Merriam-Webster on deed

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for deed

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with deed

Spanish Central: Translation of deed

Nglish: Translation of deed for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of deed for Arabic Speakers

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