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  1. Tendency to mislead or deceive; as, the deceitfulness of sin.
  2. The quality of being fraudulent; as, the deceitfulness of a man's practices.
  3. The disposition to deceive; as, a man's deceitfulness may be habitual.


Free from deceit. Hall.

DE-CEIV'A-BLE, a. [See Deceive.]

  1. Subject to deceit or imposition; capable of being misled or entrapped; exposed to imposture; as, young persons are very deceivable.
  2. Subject or apt to produce error or deception; deceitful. Fair promises often prove deceivable. – Milton. Hayward. [The latter use of the word is incorrect, and I believe, not now used.]


  1. Liableness to be deceived.
  2. Liableness to deceive. The deceivableness of unrighteousness. – 2 Thess. ii.


In a deceivable manner.

DE-CEIVE', v.t. [L. decipio, to take aside, to insnare; de and capio; Fr. decevoir; Arm. decevi. See Capable.]

  1. To mislead the mind; to cause to err; to cause to believe what is false, or disbelieve what is true; to impose on; to delude. Take heed that no man deceive you. – Matth. xxiv. If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves. – 1 John i.
  2. To beguile; to cheat. Your father hath deceived me, and changed my wages ten times. – Gen. xxxi.
  3. To cut off from expectation; to frustrate or disappoint; as, his hopes were deceived. – Dryden.
  4. To take from; to rob. Plant fruit trees in large borders, and set therein fine flowers, but thin and sparingly, lest they deceive the trees. [The literal sense, but not now used.] – Bacon.


Misled; led into error; beguiled; cheated; deluded.


One who deceives; one who leads into error; a cheat; an impostor. I shall seem to my father as a deceiver. – Gen. xxvii.


Misleading; insnaring; beguiling; cheating.

DE-CEM'BER, n. [L. december, from decem, ten; this being the tenth month among the early Romans, who began the year in March.]

The last month in the year, in which the sun enters the tropic of Capricorn, and makes the winter solstice.

DE-CEM-DEN'TATE, a. [L. decem, ten, and dentatus, toothed.]

Having ten points or teeth.

DE'CEM-FID, a. [L. decem, ten, and fido, to divide.]

Ten-cleft; divided into ten parts; having ten divisions. Martyn.

DE'CEM-LOC'U-LAR, a. [L. decem, ten, and loculus, a little bag or cell.]

Having ten cells for seeds. – Martyn.

DE'CEM-PE-DAL, a. [L. decem, ten, and pes, a foot.]

Ten feet in length.

DE'CEM-VIR, n. [plur. Decemvirs or Decemviri; L. decem, ten, and vir, a man.]

One of ten magistrates, who had absolute authority in ancient Rome.


Pertaining to the decemvirs in Rome. – Encyc.

DE-CEM'VI-RATE, n. [L. decemviratus. See Decemvir.]

  1. The office or term of office of the decemvirs or ten magistrates in Rome, who had absolute authority for two years.
  2. A body of ten men in authority.

DE'CEN-CY, n. [Fr. decence; L. decentia, from decens, deceo, to be fit or becoming; Sp. decencia; It. decenza. The L. deceo coincides in elements with the G. taugen, to be good, or fit for; D. deugen, to be good or virtuous; Sax. dugan, to avail, to be strong, to be worth; duguth, virtue, valor; dohtig, doughty; dohter, daughter; W. tygiaw, to prosper, to befit; to succeed. The Teutonic and Welsh words have for their radical sense, to advance or proceed, to stretch forward. In Welsh also, têg signifies clear, fair, smooth, beautiful; tegu, to make smooth, fair, beautiful, which would seem to be allied to deceo, whence decus, decoro. See Class Dg, No. 18, 25.]

  1. That which is fit, suitable or becoming, in words or behavior; propriety of form, in social intercourse, in actions or discourse; proper formality; becoming ceremony. It has a special reference to behavior; as, decency of conduct; decency of worship. But it is used also in reference to speech; as, he discoursed with decency. Those thousand decencies, that daily flow / From all her words and actions. – Milton.
  2. Suitableness to character; propriety.
  3. Propriety in speech; modesty; opposed to ribaldry, or obscenity. Want of decency is want of sense. – Pope. It may be also used for propriety of speech, opposed to rudeness, or disrespectful language; and for propriety in dress, opposed to raggedness, exposure of nakedness, filthiness, &c.

DE'CEN-NA-RY, n. [L. decennis, decennium, from decem, ten, and annus, a year.]

  1. A period of ten years.
  2. A tithing consisting of ten freeholders and their families. – Blackstone.

DE-CEN'NI-AL, a. [L. decennalis, as above.]

Continuing for ten years; consisting of ten years; or happening every ten years; as, a decennial period; decennial games.

DE-CEN'NO-VAL, or DE-CEN'NO-VA-RY, a. [L. decem, ten, and novem, nine.]

Pertaining to the number nineteen; designating a period or circle of nineteen years. [Little used.] – Holder.

DE'CENT, a. [L. decens; Fr. decent. See Decency.]

  1. Becoming; fit; suitable, in words, behavior, dress and ceremony; as, decent language; decent conduct or actions; decent ornaments or dress.
  2. Comely; not gaudy or ostentatious. A sable stole of Cyprus lawn, / O'er the decent shoulders drawn. – Milton.
  3. Not immodest.
  4. In popular language, moderate, but competent; not large; as, a decent fortune. So a decent person is one not highly accomplished, nor offensively rude.

DE'CENT-LY, adv.

  1. In a decent or becoming manner; with propriety of behavior or speech.
  2. Without immodesty. Past hope of safety, 'twas his latest care / Like falling Cæsar, decently to die. – Dryden.




The quality or state of being capable or liable to be deceived. – Glanville.