W1S1 [ˈdju:ti US ˈdu:-] n plural duties
1¦(something you must do)¦
3 be on/off duty
5 do duty as something
[Date: 1200-1300; : Anglo-French; Origin: dueté, from Old French deu; DUE1]
something that you have to do because it is morally or legally right
I promise I will do my duty .
We feel it is our duty to help her.
Local authorities have a duty to keep the streets clean.
You have a duty to your husband and to your children.
She has a strong sense of moral duty .
The unions have failed in their duty to female workers.
In the traditional Hindu family, the son is duty-bound to look after his mother.
2.) ¦(WORK)¦ [C usually plural, U]
something you have to do as part of your job
Martin's duties included cleaning the cars.
She works for her father doing part-time secretarial duties.
He will soon be fit enough to carry out his duties (=do his job) .
He can only do light duties .
When Juliet reported for duty (=arrived and said she was ready to start work) she was sent to check on a new patient.
A teacher may be fired for neglect of duty (=failing to do their job properly) .
He did three tours of duty in Vietnam (=three periods working in a foreign country as a soldier, government officer etc) .
3.) be on/off duty
to be working or not working at a particular time, especially when you are doing a job which people take turns to do, so that someone is always doing it
He's on night duty next week.
Mary goes on duty (=starts working) tonight at half past ten.
What time do you go off duty (=finish work) ?
4.) ¦(TAX)¦ [U and C]
a tax you pay on something you buy
duty on
the duty on cigarettes
customs duty
(=tax paid on goods coming into the country)
5.) do duty as sth
to be used as something
= ↑serve as something
The living room also does duty as a home office.
→↑double duty, heavy-duty,jury duty atjury service,on active duty atactive service
COLLOCATES for sense 1
do your duty
it is somebody's duty to do something
have a duty to do something
have a duty to somebody/owe somebody a duty
sense of duty
moral duty
legal duty
fail in your duty (=fail to do something that you should do for someone)
be duty-bound to do something formal (=have a duty to do something)

Dictionary of contemporary English. 2013.

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