Definition of deck in US English:



  • 1A structure of planks or plates, approximately horizontal, extending across a ship or boat at any of various levels, especially one of those at the highest level and open to the weather.

    ‘he stood on the deck of his flagship’
    • ‘The starboard side and part of the deck were smashed open, metal sheets torn and crushed.’
    • ‘The ferry was a very large vessel with 3 different decks for cars, trucks and buses.’
    • ‘The play opens on the deck of a ship that is sailing from the north African city of Carthage to the Italian city of Naples.’
    • ‘Smokers crossing the Irish Sea could find themselves banished to the open decks of all ferries to and from the Republic.’
    • ‘He pulled her to one of the central stairwells and they went down again, away from the open decks, seeking cover in the interior of the ship.’
    • ‘This was possibly the most dangerous place on the ship, other than the open decks.’
    • ‘You can walk around, sit in different areas, or you can go up to the top level viewing deck and watch the vessel depart the harbour.’
    • ‘The launchers are installed at a fixed elevation on the upper deck behind the main mast.’
    • ‘This is a far cry from a more leisured age when elegant vessels with teak decks with highly polished brass pottered about the Mediterranean making unhurried stops at little Aegean ports.’
    • ‘The idea is to provide a warning should a door or hatch be opened during periods when access to the upper deck has not been authorised.’
    • ‘They sat on the open deck, using a battened hatchway as a table, and feasted on fresh produce purchased on the quay.’
    • ‘Provision has been made for smokers on the aft decks of all vessels, with shelter for use in bad weather.’
    • ‘The vessel has 17 decks, which tower 200 feet above the waterline, and will be capable of speeds of up to 30 knots.’
    • ‘Extending for most of the length of the vessel, the deck is nicely sheltered from wind and rain under most conditions.’
    • ‘They soon came to the door that opened up to the deck of the ship.’
    • ‘Crews of 25 to 60 men would have been common, seated on benches on open decks, although the largest ships could have carried as many as 100 or more.’
    • ‘Adrianna was standing on the forecastle deck near the bowsprit of the ship, staring out at the crashing waves and crystal clear water.’
    • ‘The vessel's first and only consignment of freight included more than 100 articulated lorries, and scores of trucks crowd the ship's upper decks.’
    • ‘We stood on the deck of ship as it began to sail away from our old camp.’
    • ‘It's not as complex as it sounds, because many internal bulkheads have collapsed and hatches between decks are all open.’
    1. 1.1 A floor or platform resembling or compared to a ship's deck, especially the floor of a pier or a platform for sunbathing.
      • ‘From its three viewing decks, tourists peer through coin-operated telescopes at tiny hikers negotiating jagged trails down the valley.’
      • ‘At the top of the tower, where views are stupendous, is an observation deck and the building seems poised in air.’
      • ‘Taipei 101 management will open an observation deck on the 89th floor of the building on Jan.19.’
      • ‘Visitors enjoy 360 degree views from the enclosed observation deck or can go outside if they'd like.’
      • ‘Open decks form the main showroom spaces, while simple glass enclosures contain administration, staff and sales rooms.’
      • ‘We are looking at the possibility of having an extra deck on the main car park.’
      • ‘Resurfacing work to the top deck of the multi-storey car park begins on Monday, February 9th.’
      • ‘Nine pedestals lining the outdoor observation deck support smaller telescopes for hands-on undergraduate learning.’
      • ‘Mayo said construction on the parking deck could start in August and end in February.’
      • ‘Since then, it has been on permanent display on the upper deck of the pier near the site of the bowling alley destroyed by fire in 1995’
      • ‘Three boys climb the staircase to a second-floor observation deck to soak in the view.’
      • ‘It even has its own viewing platform, up a spiral stair to the rooftop deck.’
      • ‘He got up in that parking deck with his DV camera, and he captured this amazing storm surge as it rolled in.’
      • ‘Two patients actually died on that parking deck as these guys were pumping air into their lungs for hours and hours on end.’
      • ‘Then the structure's bare steel deck will be covered with a new membrane, followed by asphalt.’
      • ‘The concrete deck forms a platform from which the building rises.’
      • ‘After that, we'll go to the Space Needle and go to the very top observation deck.’
      • ‘There was a tourist observation deck nearby, outfitted with telescopes.’
      • ‘She just envied Sam because of the view of New York from his building's roof deck.’
    2. 1.2 A platform, typically made of lumber and unroofed, attached to a house or other building.
      ‘they cooked hamburgers on the deck adjoining the living room’
      • ‘I work in a cozy tiny bright room in the garage and have a clear view of the back of the house to which a large deck is attached.’
      • ‘In the pool area there is a red wood deck with matching bed chaises that Carmen actually had redone for Dave's birthday.’
      • ‘The bar turned out to be surprisingly spacious, with a restaurant downstairs, and a bar with an attached roof deck upstairs.’
      • ‘I could hear his Nintendo music from the living room, so I jumped down the stairs and ran around the house to the deck.’
      • ‘I can surf the Web from anywhere in the house (including the deck and the driveway).’
      • ‘This allows me to see my complete pond from the house and deck.’
      • ‘But Jade chased them around with the hose's stream, and was careful not to hit Lauren as she made her way up to the deck and into the house.’
      • ‘The party had to be moved from the deck to inside the house.’
      • ‘A large wooden deck links house and beach, allowing the residents to do much of their living outdoors.’
      • ‘Enjoy those sweltering days of summer in style, and what better way to do it than to hang out on the leafy deck of a beautiful house?’
      • ‘In some areas a deck attached to a house will be taxed, but if it is separated by even an inch or two it will not.’
      • ‘A long timber deck links the house with a smaller structure used as a belvedere for sitting out or quiet contemplation.’
      • ‘Going upstairs to the third floor, there's some artwork from Morocco and a little outdoor deck.’
      • ‘The building will include a deck, bar and lounge as well as the dining room.’
      • ‘At that time his partner saw me coming out of the house onto the deck.’
      • ‘Whenever I build that deck out back, these are going to be the chairs’
      • ‘I waved back and ran through the house out to the deck and waited for him.’
      • ‘Your recycled plastic grocery bags may be part of someone's new deck.’
      • ‘The wooden deck attached to your house is NOT a good place to barbecue.’
      • ‘The couple wanted to preserve as much of their backyard as possible, so the long, shallow deck hugs the house.’
    3. 1.3 A level of a large, open building, especially a sports stadium.
      ‘Jeter hit an enormous home run into the upper deck’
      • ‘Already this season, he has established a SkyDome record with a 491-foot blast into the fifth deck.’
      • ‘On the first pitch, Wertz belted the ball into the far reaches of Briggs Stadium's right field upper deck to win the game.’
      • ‘From the distant seats in the upper deck of Royals Stadium, Brett looked utterly confident.’
    4. 1.4the deckinformal The ground or floor.
      ‘there was a big thud when I hit the deck’
      • ‘They hit the deck as a loud bang echoed through the hall.’
      • ‘The attempt went over the bar and Bergkamp hit the deck but he was able to continue after treatment.’
      • ‘If your going to hit the deck, make sure you are wearing these…’
      • ‘Three horses hit the deck on the bend past the stands in the opening Bank Of Ireland Handicap Hurdle.’
      • ‘In the act of picking the ball up he wrenched his knee, with the ball flying from his hand and he hit the deck.’
      • ‘I hit the deck like a sack of spuds - there was blood everywhere.’
      • ‘Barrow Drive was the big fancy for the Novice Chase but he hit the deck six fences out.’
      • ‘All I see is the Marines just hit the deck and start shooting.’
      • ‘Soldiers can be commanded to kneel down, hit the deck and crawl, or stand up.’
      • ‘It's obviously payback for every time I've laughed at a little old lady who's managed to become entangled in her shopping trolley and then hit the deck.’
      • ‘As soon as he hit the deck, Kenny Logan grabbed the ball and raced through the middle to score under the posts.’
      • ‘Vinny Sullivan hit the deck just as John Frost was about to throw the ball in.’
      • ‘Luckily, he was wearing a helmet, because it was dented when he hit the deck.’
      • ‘We were on our feet with shock when Zabriskie hit the deck - a serious shame that he lost the yellow jersey, but an incredibly galvanising moment.’
      • ‘Rugby Park's euphoria was dimmed awhile when Hay hit the deck and never got up again but the silence did not last long.’
      • ‘The signal officer on deck gave me the go ahead; he then hit the deck, his right hand slapping the seemingly endless strip of plywood.’
      • ‘Of course we've seen it before with Astroturf which was revolutionary at the time, but unlike Astroturf it doesn't sandpaper your knees when you hit the deck.’
      • ‘In a bloody brawl Botha hit the deck in the eighth round, but stormed back to all but render Briggs unconscious in the 10th and final session.’
      • ‘However on the hard, slick, floor his opponent promptly hit the deck and slid along it some distance unconscious.’
      • ‘It was always going to be a difficult game to officiate given Tyrone's willingness to hit the deck but White punished petulance as well as could have been expected.’
      floor, earth, terra firma
      View synonyms
    5. 1.5 The flat part of a skateboard or snowboard.
      • ‘He managed to get off the bus before me, as I had two bags, my guitar and my skateboard decks to carry.’
      • ‘He has turned skateboard decks into an art form, appealing to art enthusiasts.’
      • ‘With intent, nearly 30 diverse local talents have transformed skateboard decks into art pieces.’
      • ‘With a skateboard-type deck and tiny wheels, the Go-Ped is designed to be ridden upright, and can be folded up and taken anywhere.’
  • 2A component or unit in sound-reproduction equipment that incorporates a playing or recording mechanism for discs or tapes.

    ‘the car has cruise control and a tape deck’
    • ‘After the recording is finished, the tape rewinds and the deck starts scanning for commercials.’
    • ‘To me, it recalls slab-like stereos from the late 1970s combining a radio, tape player and record deck.’
    • ‘He smiles back at me as the tape in the deck stops and rips.’
    • ‘The suit and tie may have been a serious sartorial mistake, but being pictured behind some record decks makes for a good photo opportunity.’
    • ‘It might seem odd that DJs and techno bands from Sweden to Austria would abandon conventional mixing decks for a hand-sized games console.’
    • ‘I've done very technically accomplished mixes on home hi-fi equipment - two hi-fi decks and a tape recorder.’
    • ‘His remarkable adapted style at the decks involves him mixing records using his mouth.’
    • ‘Another of my friends had brought a record deck, another his BBC Micro computer, and all of a sudden things didn't look too bad at all.’
    • ‘The girls look nervously at the decks, the mixing desk, the CD control panel.’
    • ‘I decided to put a tape in the deck and get lost in some music.’
    • ‘Music throughout the night will be provided by a pretty woman who bought some record decks especially.’
    • ‘A call centre operator from Trowbridge is hoping her talent on the mixing decks will win her the chance to perform in the dance tent at this year's Glastonbury festival.’
    • ‘Norman also brought back the idea of twin record decks from the US.’
    • ‘Sound and Video clips are played in from computer servers rather than Tape machines and record decks.’
    • ‘A DJ mix album in the conventional live club experience sense of the word there's no clever edits, effects or computer assistance here just a man, a record box and two decks.’
    • ‘On stage, he is a 20-something man with a shaven head, a cardigan, a bow-tie, and a pipe, who pretends to manipulate a pair of decks whilst a tape plays in the background.’
    • ‘Roadies come on and start removing record decks from the middle of the stage.’
    • ‘But before I let him off the phone, I plugged headphones into the deck and listened to one of the tapes.’
    • ‘While many of his peers aspired to be club DJs, Costello exchanged his record decks for a synthesiser after only a week.’
    • ‘I eagerly opened them up and popped one of the VHS tapes into my deck.’
    1. 2.1decks A set of two or more record decks connected to sound mixing equipment, used by a DJ.
      ‘every serious DJ needs a set of decks’
      • ‘The bar and DJ decks are located along the back wall, allowing clubbers to enjoy the music and the picturesque views.’
      • ‘I've neglected my decks recently despite having plenty of excellent new tunes to mix.’
      • ‘However, Stooshe also jump behind the decks to show that their DJ skills can more than compete with their dance moves.’
      • ‘"I am a legend," he shouted out to a packed dancefloor from the decks with his arms raised in the air.’
      • ‘She's also a guest DJ at Ibiza Rocks, where Idris Elba takes to the decks.’
      • ‘DJ Z-Bad will deliver his debut performance behind the decks tonight.’
      • ‘In between spinning the decks to entertain the guests, the 22-year-old announced her plans for her own clothing line.’
      • ‘Trackstar The DJ was behind the decks.’
      • ‘Whenever I'm at a party or round at my mate's houses, I can't help getting on the decks.’
      • ‘I was back where I belong - I was back home, behind the decks with a crowd in front of me.’
  • 3North American A pack of cards.

    ‘shuffle the deck’
    • ‘There he found a deck of cards and began a marathon game of one-handed pinochle.’
    • ‘Shuffling the deck of cards expertly, he sighed and leaned back in his chair.’
    • ‘Feeling the clasp of a hand on his shoulder Ben turned and could not resist a smile as Jack took out his trademark deck of cards and shuffled it in mid air.’
    • ‘After we were finished, we grabbed a deck of cards, and played some furious poker, which I dominated.’
    • ‘They immediately stepped back and sat down as Raymond picked up the deck of cards and began shuffling.’
    • ‘Each player has an own deck of cards, own draw pile as well as own discard pile.’
    • ‘Intimate Poker is a deck of cards with a range of forfeits specified on each card.’
    • ‘The virtual deck of cards is shuffled randomly, and the top cards off the deck are dealt.’
    • ‘A professional bridge player was suspended from competition for manipulating a deck of cards during the shuffle and deal.’
    • ‘I looked around the closet and stood up trying to find something we could play with, like a deck of cards or something.’
    • ‘I picked up a deck of cards from his desk, shuffling to keep myself occupied.’
    • ‘She retrieved the deck of cards and returned to the table to play what was probably her one thousandth game of solitaire since arriving at the prison.’
    • ‘The man played idly with a deck of cards, shuffling and re-shuffling with a bit of a smirk on his face.’
    • ‘They use multiple decks in casinos, which sometimes makes it more difficult to count.’
    • ‘When he went looking through the offered board games he found not only a deck of cards but also a cribbage board.’
    • ‘I had learned from many of these trips to bring homework, books, a deck of cards, to amuse myself, sometimes for three days.’
    • ‘There are some who can perform magic tricks while others cannot even shuffle a deck of cards.’
    • ‘They passed the time playing Crazy Eights with a deck of cards that Gavin had packed into his carry on.’
    • ‘I really knew nothing about gambling until I started work on the show, I did not even know how to shuffle a deck of cards.’
    • ‘From a deck of cards, pick out the ace through six of one suit.’
    • ‘In many Tarot decks The Fool is illustrated as being about to step off a cliff.’
    1. 3.1informal A packet of narcotics.
      • ‘When it's analysed, they'll find five or six half-chewed decks of heroin.’


[with object]
  • 1Decorate or adorn brightly or festively.

    ‘Ingrid was decked out in her Sunday best’
    • ‘In one of the photographs the shop's facade is decked out in bunting, with a Union Flag flying.’
    • ‘Officers on patrol will be decked out in a uniform of cycling jacket, trousers and cycling helmet.’
    • ‘The eight were decked out in all of the gear needed for a night mission.’
    • ‘Many delegates travelled here in specially chartered buses and open-top trucks decked out in red flags.’
    • ‘The frost is thick on the ground, Rudolf and Prancer are straining at the leash and the halls are decked with boughs of holly.’
    • ‘Most of those present were decked out in the Kerry colours and they cheered and clapped every positive move or score the team got.’
    • ‘For the first time in its history, the Jumbo water tower will be decked out in dazzling lights for the festive season.’
    • ‘Their table is already decked out in the flags of several different countries.’
    • ‘Like most of the people in town, Carly was decked out in orange and black, except a tad more subtle.’
    • ‘You got a hint that he was a Wolves supporter from the fact that he wore a golden shirt, his car was decked out in flags… and his hair was dyed gold.’
    • ‘He too was decked out in a sailor outfit, which matched his little brother's.’
    • ‘The city was decked out in flags and yellow and green ribbons and it seemed that everyone was in a yellow or blue football shirt.’
    • ‘On the day of the wedding the church will be decked out in white flowers and candles - it will be very romantic and idyllic.’
    • ‘The groom is Scottish so he and all the ushers were decked out in kilts.’
    • ‘Pubs across the city are decked out in England colours and hundreds of drivers are displaying the flag of St George.’
    • ‘This weekend many pubs will be decked out in flags and banners and a growing number of councils are spending a small fortune on celebrations.’
    • ‘The service staff are brightly decked out in orange and black and met us with big smiles and took us to our table.’
    • ‘Workplaces were decked out in red and white as workers pinned up flags of St George.’
    • ‘Within minutes, Kayline was decked out in the outfit they had seen in the window.’
    • ‘The place was decked out in USA mini-flags and the theme was American's Wild West days.’
    • ‘The whole place was a swarm of English fans, decked out in flags and scarves and with painted faces.’
    decorate, bedeck, adorn, ornament, trim, trick out, garnish, cover, hang, festoon, garland, swathe, wreathe
    dress up, dress, clothe, attire, array, garb, robe, drape, accoutre, turn out, fit out, rig out, trick out, trick up, outfit, costume
    View synonyms
  • 2informal Knock (someone) to the ground with a punch.

    • ‘Mia whirled around, ready to deck the person holding onto her when she realized who it was.’
    • ‘I was sorely tempted to deck him, just to make certain he knew I wasn't batting on the same side as he was.’
    • ‘I hated how he was being so nice about it, instead of just decking me and yelling at me about how I was being stupid and selfish.’
    • ‘I thought Kent had become timid after Kareem decked him with one punch during his rookie year.’
    • ‘No words were exchanged as the redhead, a good head shorter than the Cooper boy, decked him.’
    • ‘Now I had an opportunity to sort it out… but I decided on this occasion, decking him may not have the desired effect.’
    • ‘When Ford again tried to reach for Grace, she spun away from him, decking him with her elbow and then knocking his feet out from under him with a deft kick.’
    • ‘She just wanted to deck her, but wasn't going to stoop to her level.’
    • ‘When Lewis's body guard tried to intercept the ruthless former champion, Tyson decked him.’
    • ‘They said nothing, but one guy in front took a step forward and decked me.’
    • ‘Community Radio Steve was trying to calm them all down and I swear their singer wanted to deck me.’
    • ‘The only thing keeping her from decking my dad, was my pleading looks.’
    • ‘This apparently caused a lot of trouble, people were actually advised to leave before they decked him.’
    • ‘She was breathing hard, and her fists were clenched as if she were ready to deck the first person that got in her way.’
    • ‘He caught himself before he decked her, but it was a close call, and one that upset him terribly.’
    • ‘‘Robert if you finish that sentence I will be the one decking you,’ Linda's voice said, from behind Robert.’
    • ‘The pressure was on both sides and late in the term Trevor Dhu let fly with a jab that Anthony Mundine would be proud of, decking Adam Taylor and earning himself a red card.’
    • ‘At the time, my husband restrained me from going into the editor's office and decking him.’
    • ‘Halton had a bug eyed stare proving him to be scared stiff and he was decked with a big right to the temple.’
    strike, slap, smack, cuff, punch, beat, thrash, thump, batter, belabour, drub, hook, pound, smash, slam, welt, pummel, hammer, bang, knock, swat, whip, flog, cane, sucker-punch, rain blows on, give someone a beating, give someone a drubbing, give someone a good beating, give someone a good drubbing, box someone's ears
    View synonyms


  • not playing with a full deck

    • informal Mentally deficient.

      • ‘Unfortunately, Prinny didn't realise that Jimmy wasn't playing with a full deck.’
      • ‘‘He was obviously not playing with a full deck,’ Sergeant Petcoff said.’
      • ‘And poor Ray Liotta: his over-the-top work as Duvall's sniggering superior suggests an actor not playing with a full deck.’
      • ‘Vivaldo quickly deduces that Don Quijote is not playing with a full deck, but continues to converse and question him; curious as to the extent of his delusion.’
      • ‘The innkeeper now knew, without a doubt, that his guest is not playing with a full deck and he decides to have some fun and play along.’
  • on deck

    • 1On or onto a ship's main deck.

      ‘she stood on deck for hours’
      • ‘Bligh orders the ship's doctor, a dying man, to stand on deck despite his illness.’
      • ‘My days were spent on deck, working the ship and my nights were spent in Garren's pleasant company.’
      • ‘It seems that after the engines had been put out of action, the captain called everyone on deck and told them to abandon ship.’
      • ‘I was up on deck at first light along with most of the ship's occupants.’
      • ‘Once dressed in jeans and a t-shirt, Blair found Jim standing on deck, coffee in hand, looking out over the water.’
      • ‘Within seconds, the entire crew stood assembled on deck, looking expectantly at Shane.’
      • ‘It took an hour for the large refrigerated cargo ship to manoeuvre to bring the four on deck, using a rope ladder over the side.’
      • ‘We had been sitting inside because of the cold, but as the ferry began to pull into the dock, Maria went on deck and stood by the railing near the bow.’
      • ‘They're hundreds of miles into the Atlantic Ocean and they're probably standing on deck, holding glasses of champagne, and waiting to toast the New Year in.’
      • ‘On this occasion, people were sunbathing out on deck while the ship made its way between Ullapool and Stornoway.’
      1. 1.1North American informal Ready for action or work.
        • ‘It's a busy day, with no relief tonight - my wife's at the Bunco henfest, which means I'm on deck until midnight.’
        • ‘Also on deck was De Bruijn, who owns history's fastest 50 after three Chinese swimmers.’
        • ‘We begin with our friend Clint Eastwood, who's on deck in Washington.’
        • ‘I want to spend a few brief moments with David Ensor, CNN's national security correspondent on deck in Washington.’
        • ‘I'm back on deck today and ready for return to German class tonight, though I haven't done much revision.’
        • ‘I don't know how they organize who is on deck for media appearances, but they just have to be better prepared.…’
        • ‘And on deck in Salt Lake City is Kevin Peraino, correspondent covering the Smart story for ‘Newsweek’.’
        • ‘Martz's decision to stick with Warner come hell or high water becomes even more questionable considering he has the able-bodied Marc Bulger on deck.’
        in position, poised, ready for use, ready for action, waiting
        View synonyms
      2. 1.2Next to hit in the batting order.
        • ‘Mickey Rivers was on deck, and the Yanks leadoff hitter had been closely observing Dent the entire time.’
        • ‘Walk rates indeed go down when an elite hitter is on deck - but so do batting and slugging averages.’
        • ‘Rookie center fielder Fred Lynn was on deck and Fisk told him, ‘Freddie, I'm going to hit one off the wall and drive one in.’’
        • ‘The Book would dictate taking the bat out of the hands of the torrid Molitor, despite the fact he was hitless in three at-bats, and future Hall of Famer Robin Yount was on deck.’


Late Middle English: from Middle Dutch dec ‘covering, roof, cloak’, dekken ‘to cover’. Originally denoting canvas used to make a covering (especially on a ship), the term came to mean the covering itself, later denoting a solid surface serving as roof and floor.