Definition of


  1. (noun, act) any clever maneuver
    it was a great sales gimmick
    a cheap promotions gimmick for greedy businessmen
  2. (noun, artifact) an instrumentality invented for a particular purpose
    a device intended to conserve water
  3. (noun, artifact) an emblematic design (especially in heraldry)
  4. (noun, artifact) any ornamental pattern or design (as in embroidery)
  5. (noun, communication) something in an artistic work designed to achieve a particular effect

via WordNet, Princeton University

Synonyms of Device

gimmick, twist

Alternate forms of Device

Hyponyms: acoustic device, adapter, adaptor, aerofoil, afterburner, agglomerator, airfoil, alarm, alarm system, appliance, applicator, applier, aspergill, aspersorium, asphyxiator, autocue, automatic pilot, autopilot, baby's dummy, bait, battery charger, billiard marker, bird feeder, birdfeeder, birth control device, blower, bootjack, breathalyser, breathalyzer, breathing apparatus, breathing device, breathing machine, bubbler, buffer, button, catapult, charger, clip-on, comb, comforter, conceit, conductor, constraint, contraceptive, contraceptive device, contraption, contrivance, control surface, convenience, converter, convertor, corer, corrective, crusher, cryptograph, cutoff, dampener, damper, dart thrower, decoy, deflector, dental appliance, depressor, detector, diestock, doorknocker, drive, drop forge, drop hammer, drop press, elastic device, electrical device, electronic device, energiser, energizer, exercise device, explosive device, extinguisher, fan, fast one, feeder, fender, filter, fire extinguisher, flare, foil, fumigator, gadget, gas fixture, gismo, gizmo, goad, groover, guard, heat exchanger, heater, holding device, horn, hydrofoil, igniter, ignition interlock, ignitor, imprint, indicator, instrument, interlock, interrupter, jig, key, keyboard, kinetoscope, knocker, launcher, lift, lifting device, light, lighter, lure, machine, magnet, mechanism, memory device, mnemonic, moistener, muffler, musical instrument, nest egg, noisemaker, optical device, override, pacifier, pair of tongs, paper feed, peeler, pick, plectron, plectrum, power takeoff, preventative, preventive, prod, prompter, prophylactic device, pto, pull, rapper, reflector, reinforcement, release, remote, remote control, reset, restorative, restraint, rhetorical device, robot pilot, router, runner, safety, safety device, scratcher, seal, sensing element, sensor, shoehorn, shoetree, shooting stick, shredder, signaling device, snowshoe, sounder, source of illumination, spear thrower, stabiliser, stabilizer, stamp, stemmer, storage device, straightener, strengthener, stylus, suction cup, support, surface, sweatbox, synchroflash, take-up, teaser, teething ring, throwing board, throwing stick, tilter, tongs, toy, trap, trick, trigger, union, valve, vaporiser, vaporizer, ventilator, warmer, warning device, washboard, water cooler, widget

Hypernyms: design, emblem, expressive style, figure, instrumentality, instrumentation, maneuver, manoeuvre, pattern, style, tactical maneuver, tactical manoeuvre

Origin of the word Device

  1. late 13c., from O.Fr. devis "division, separation, disposition, wish, desire," from L. divisus, pp. of dividere "to divide" (see divide). Sense of "method by which something is divided" arose in French and led to modern meaning. more

via Online Etymology Dictionary, ©2001 Douglas Harper

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