UK:*UK and possibly other pronunciationsUK and possibly other pronunciations/dɪˈzɜːrʃən/US:USA pronunciation: respellingUSA pronunciation: respelling(di zûrshən)

WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2020
de•ser•tion  (di zûrshən),USA pronunciation n. 
  1. the act of deserting or the state of being deserted.
  2. Lawwillful abandonment, esp. of one's wife or husband without consent, in violation of legal or moral obligations.
  3. Militaryan act of leaving military service or duty without the intention of returning. Cf. AWOL.
  • Latin dēsert(us) (see desert1) + -iōn- -ion
  • Late Latin dēsertiōn- (stem of dēsertiō)
  • 1585–95

Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::
desertion /dɪˈzɜːʃən/ n
  1. the act of deserting or abandoning or the state of being deserted or abandoned
  2. wilful abandonment, esp of one's spouse or children, without consent and in breach of obligations
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