\ ˈdəkt How to pronounce duct (audio) \

Definition of duct

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a bodily tube or vessel especially when carrying the secretion of a gland
2a : a pipe, tube, or channel that conveys a substance
b : a pipe or tubular runway for carrying an electric power line, telephone cables, or other conductors
3 : a tube or elongated cavity (such as a xylem vessel) in plant tissue
4 : a layer (as in the atmosphere or the ocean) which occurs under usually abnormal conditions and in which radio or sound waves are confined to a restricted path


ducted; ducting; ducts

Definition of duct (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to enclose in a duct
2 : to convey (something, such as a gas) through a duct also : to propagate (something, such as radio waves) through a duct

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Other Words from duct


ductal \ ˈdək-​tᵊl How to pronounce ductal (audio) \ adjective
ductless \ ˈdək(t)-​ləs How to pronounce ductless (audio) \ adjective

Examples of duct in a Sentence


air ducts to provide ventilation

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The researchers took water samples near a ventilation duct on the Cold War-era sub. Ryan Prior, CNN, "A sunken Soviet nuclear submarine is leaking unusually high levels of radiation," 11 July 2019 Their investigation revealed the exceptionally high radiation level in the area around a ventilation duct at the wreck, according to the Norwegian Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority. Claire Parker, BostonGlobe.com, "Soviet-era submarine is emitting radiation at levels 800,000 times above normal, Norway says," 11 July 2019 Their investigation revealed the exceptionally high radiation level in the area around a ventilation duct at the wreck, according to the Norwegian Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority. Washington Post, "A Soviet-era submarine is emitting radiation at levels 800,000 times normal, Norway says," 11 July 2019 As a co-founder of Signal Ensemble Theatre in Chicago, Marra and his colleagues worked in at least one basement and old warehouse where an enormous ventilation duct stretched above the audience and stage. Domenica Bongiovanni, Indianapolis Star, "A new theater in Broad Ripple is now open, and its first show will be in September," 26 June 2019 Photo: James Hagerty/The Wall Street Journal Mr. Togneri, the police spokesman, said the officers eventually snagged the beast with poles normally used to capture stray dogs, then duct-taped its jaws shut. James R. Hagerty, WSJ, "‘We Don’t Need Alligators in Pittsburgh’: Spate of Reptile Escapes Confounds Police," 19 June 2019 Her feet were duct-taped together, and she had been shot in the back of the head. The Washington Post, The Mercury News, "He said he would pay $9 million for a murder. So five friends plotted to kill a teenager, police say.," 17 June 2019 The mayor of the Yukon River village of Russian Mission said that within the past couple years, residents duct-taped a man who had been firing a gun within the village and waited for troopers to arrive. Kyle Hopkins, ProPublica, "ProPublica’s Local Reporting Network," 16 May 2019 The cars also had a radiator duct that exited through the hood instead of the engine compartment, designed bring parity to aerodynamics and reduce temperatures in the car. Pete Iacobelli, The Seattle Times, "NASCAR changes play part in thrilling All-Star Race," 19 May 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

According to the Department of Energy, ducts that leak air can add hundreds of dollars to your energy bill each year. Jessica Levy, Indianapolis Star, "4 ways this home repair will lower your energy bills and boost your health," 28 June 2019 Sterigenics executives said there would be dramatic improvements last summer after the company ducted vents from its sterilization chambers into existing pollution controls at both Willowbrook facilities. Michael Hawthorne, chicagotribune.com, "In a bid to reopen shuttered Willowbrook plant, Sterigenics proposes tighter controls on cancer-causing gas," 27 June 2019 Back in March, DARPA announced that it had awarded company called Aurora Flight Sciences a contract to start test its far-out design for a VTOL craft propelled by two dozen ducted fans. Eric Limer, Popular Mechanics, "DARPA's Bonkers 24-Prop Plane Takes Flight," 19 Apr. 2016 Apprentices receive lower pay than more experienced metal fabricators, who make ducting for heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems, and are normally in demand by contractors. Jeannette Lee Falsey, Alaska Dispatch News, "How bad is Alaska’s recession? Economists call it ‘moderate’ so far.," 26 July 2017 Miles of neatly ducted, shielded cables run along the ceiling. Sebastian Anthony, Ars Technica, "Taking a flight on the best Boeing 757," 3 July 2017 The District 181 Board Monday approved paying for a fitness mezzanine and expanded storage at about $53,400, two operable windows per classroom for about $217,400 and ducted fan coil units in lieu of cassettes for about $134,500. Chuck Fieldman, chicagotribune.com, "Track not part of $400,000 in Hinsdale Middle School additions," 27 June 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'duct.' 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 duct


1667, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1936, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for duct


New Latin ductus, from Medieval Latin, aqueduct, from Latin, act of leading, from ducere to lead — more at tow entry 1

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Dictionary Entries near duct

duck wheat







Statistics for duct

Last Updated

17 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for duct

The first known use of duct was in 1667

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More Definitions for duct



English Language Learners Definition of duct

: a pipe or tube for air, water, electric power lines, etc., to pass through
: a tube in the body that carries a particular liquid


\ ˈdəkt How to pronounce duct (audio) \

Kids Definition of duct

: a pipe, tube, or vessel that carries something air-conditioning ducts tear ducts


\ ˈdəkt How to pronounce duct (audio) \

Medical Definition of duct

: a bodily tube or vessel especially when carrying the secretion of a gland

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More from Merriam-Webster on duct

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for duct

Spanish Central: Translation of duct

Nglish: Translation of duct for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of duct for Arabic Speakers

Comments on duct

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to form ideas or theories about something

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