Definition of decoy in English:

decoy

Syllabification: de·coy

noun

Pronunciation: /ˈdēˌkoi
 
/
1A bird or mammal, or an imitation of one, used by hunters to attract other birds or mammals: [as modifier]: a decoy duck
More example sentences
  • Supporters counter that it is no more unfair than using bird calls and decoys to attract birds or using baited hooks to catch fish.
  • The net was being controlled by someone in a nearby hut who was able to pull the string to make the decoy attract other birds.
  • Brandon also had a room which meant we were only some 10 miles from Havre De Grace which is a delightful historic town which has many sites of interest including a Duck decoy museum!
1.1A person or thing used to mislead or lure an animal or person into a trap.
More example sentences
  • So, unless the unlikely happened and they split up, the dot he was heading towards was a decoy and possibly a trap.
  • That whole wing of the base was nothing but an elaborate decoy designed to trap invaders.
  • Your Majesty, though a large force has been assembled in the South, it is but a decoy, to lure us away from our target.
Synonyms
lure, bait, red herring;
enticement, inducement, temptation, attraction, carrot;
snare, trap
1.2
More example sentences
  • The ship's torpedo decoy is the Nixie AN / SLQ25.
  • The towed torpedo decoy is the Sensytech AN / SLQ - 25 Nixie.
  • The ship is also equipped with the Nixie torpedo decoy, from Sensytech Inc of Newington, Virginia.
2A pond from which narrow netted channels lead, into which wild ducks may be enticed for capture.
More example sentences
  • An ancient decoy pond, originally created to lure wildfowl and deer for the abbot to hunt is being restored, as is the original wooden deer fence.

verb

Pronunciation: /dəˈkoi
 
/
[with object] Back to top  
Lure or entice (a person or animal) away from an intended course, typically into a trap: they would try to decoy the enemy toward the hidden group
More example sentences
  • Most successful basketball plays involve only two or three players in any particular play with the remaining players maneuvering or decoying opponents away from the intended point of attack.
  • Equally lacking in some essential points are the various post-election party urgings which are aimed at decoying us into focusing on domestic issues.
  • The soldiers were decoyed to a border region while the Viet Cong mounted a major offensive in the urban areas.
Synonyms
lure, entice, allure, tempt;
entrap, snare, trap

Origin

mid 16th century (earlier as coy): from Dutch de kooi 'the decoy', from Middle Dutch de kouw 'the cage', from Latin cavea 'cage'. sense 2 of the noun is from the practice of using tamed ducks to lead wild ones along channels into captivity.

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