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Definition of desert:

  1. A deserted or forsaken region; a barren tract incapable of supporting population, as the vast sand plains of Asia and Africa are destitute and vegetation.
  2. A tract, which may be capable of sustaining a population, but has been left unoccupied and uncultivated; a wilderness; a solitary place.
  3. Of or pertaining to a desert; forsaken; without life or cultivation; unproductive; waste; barren; wild; desolate; solitary; as, they landed on a desert island.
  4. That which is deserved; the reward or the punishment justly due; claim to recompense, usually in a good sense; right to reward; merit.
  5. To abandon ( the service) without leave; to forsake in violation of duty; to abscond from; as, to desert the army; to desert one's colors.
  6. To abandon a service without leave; to quit military service without permission, before the expiration of one's term; to abscond.
  7. To leave ( especially something which one should stay by and support); to leave in the lurch; to abandon; to forsake; - implying blame, except sometimes when used of localities; as, to desert a friend, a principle, a cause, one's country.

Synonyms:

come away, leave someone in the lurch, abjure, ravage, forego, no-man's-land, backwater, recant, devastate, die, wild, bottomland, empty, godforsaken, depart from, not lift a finger, depopulate, rich, renegade, apostatize, buy out, like rats deserting a sinking ship, forsake, go away, keep, repudiate, oasis, mirage, fade away, forswear, abandon ship, rut, vanish, slim down, trust, approach, desolate, split, withdraw from, Birdsville Track, wasteland, dissolve, tergiversate, stop, AWOL, lay waste to, break away, get away, cede, moonscape, do little to help/solve etc., badlands, that's your problem, inhospitable, wilderness, draw out, call up, yawn, redline, evaporate, cast off, move on, scourge, bore, disappear, conscript, finish, conscription, commission, cease, rat, living death, defect, turn, waste, retire from, splinter, throw over, cashier, abandon, 4-F, desolation.

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