American Dictionary of the English Language

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DETECT, verb transitive [Latin , to cover.] Literally, to uncover; hence, to discover; to find out; to bring to light; as, to detect the ramifications and inosculations of the fine vessels. But this word is especially applied to the discovery of secret crimes and artifices. We detect a thief, or the crime of stealing. We detect the artifices of the man, or the man himself. We detect what is concealed, especially what is concealed by design.