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de·but also dé·but (dā-by, də-, dāby)
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n.
1.
a. A first appearance in public, as of a performer: He made his acting debut on Broadway.
b. A first time appearing in a particular capacity or position: made his major-league debut; her debut as a director.
2. Informal A first publication, as of a novel or music album, by an individual or group: The band released three singles from their debut.
3. The formal presentation of a young woman to society.
4. The beginning of a course of action: the debut of a new foreign policy.
adj.
First or earliest; maiden: a debut novel; the filly's debut race; the singer's debut performance.
tr. & intr.v. de·buted (-byd), de·but·ing (-byĭng), de·buts (-byz)
To present as or make a debut: The company will debut a new logo next year. He debuted as a model when he was 18.

[French début, from débuter, to give the first stroke in a game, begin : dé-, from, away (from Old French de-; see DE-) + but, goal, target (from Old French butte; see BUTT3).]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 

Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices

    Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:

    Indo-European Roots

    Semitic Roots

    The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.

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