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A typewriter on a desk


From Middle English deske, desque, from Medieval Latin desca, modified from Old Italian desco, from Latin discus. Doublet of dish and disk.


  • (file)
  • IPA(key): /dɛsk/
  • (file)


desk (plural desks)

English Wikipedia has an article on:
  1. A table, frame, or case, in past centuries usually with a sloping top but now usually with a flat top, for the use of writers and readers. It often has a drawer or repository underneath.
    • 1918, W. B. Maxwell, chapter 5, in The Mirror and the Lamp:
      Here, in the transept and choir, where the service was being held, one was conscious every moment of an increasing brightness; colours glowing vividly beneath the circular chandeliers, and the rows of small lights on the choristers' desks flashed and sparkled in front of the boys' faces, deep linen collars, and red neckbands.
  2. A reading table or lectern to support the book from which the liturgical service is read, differing from the pulpit from which the sermon is preached; also (especially in the United States), a pulpit. Hence, used symbolically for the clerical profession.
  3. A department of a newspaper tasked with covering a particular geographical region or aspect of the news.
    city desk


Coordinate termsEdit

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The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.


desk (third-person singular simple present desks, present participle desking, simple past and past participle desked)

  1. To shut up, as in a desk; to treasure.


Middle EnglishEdit



  1. Alternative form of dosk