Meaning of “desertion” in the English Dictionary

american-english dictionary

"desertion" in British English

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desertionnoun

uk /dɪˈzɜː.ʃən/ us /dɪˈzɝː.ʃən/

[ C or U ] the act of leaving the armed forces without permission:

During the war, desertion was punishable by death.
There were thousands of desertions in the last weeks of the war.
figurative There have been mass desertions from (= a lot of people have left) the party in recent months.

[ C or U ] the act of leaving someone behind in a difficult situation:

Roger got his divorce on the grounds of desertion (= because his wife had left him).

(Definition of “desertion” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"desertion" in American English

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desertionnoun [ U ]

us /dɪˈzɜr·ʃən/

the act of leaving without permission, or without planning to return

Desertion is also the act of leaving someone in a difficult situation or without help.

(Definition of “desertion” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)