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Definition of "duty" []

  • An act or a course of action that is required of one by position, social custom, law, or religion: Do your duty to your country. (noun)
  • Moral obligation: acting out of duty. (noun)
  • The compulsion felt to meet such obligation. (noun)
  • A service, function, or task assigned to one, especially in the armed forces: hazardous duty. (noun)
  • Function or work; service: jury duty. See Synonyms at function. (noun)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "duty" in a sentence
  • "Ross thinks that duty proper, as he calls it, is a quite different sort of thing from a prima facie duty; the notion of ˜duty™ in ˜prima facie duty™ is a different notion from that in ˜duty proper™."
  • ""I know that Elise has a conscience that will hold her fast to duty," said Benigna, but she did not speak hopefully: she spoke deliberately, however, thinking that these words _conscience_ and _duty_ might arrest the minister's attention, and that he would perhaps, by some means, throw light upon questions which were constantly becoming more perplexing to her."
  • "In the duty of accumulation -- and I call it a _duty_, in the most strict and literal signification of that word -- all below a competence is most valuable, and its acquisition most laudable; but all above a fortune is a misfortune."