[ri-kon-uh-suhns, -zuhns]
the act of reconnoitering.
Military. a search made for useful military information in the field, especially by examining the ground.
Surveying, Civil Engineering. a general examination or survey of a region, usually followed by a detailed survey.
Geology. an examination or survey of the general geological characteristics of a region.
Also, reconnoissance.

1800–10; < French; Middle French reconoissance recognizance Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
reconnaissance or reconnoissance (rɪˈkɒnɪsəns)
1.  the act of reconnoitring
2.  the process of obtaining information about the position, activities, resources, etc, of an enemy or potential enemy
3.  a preliminary inspection of an area of land before an engineering survey is made
[C18: from French, from Old French reconoistre to explore, recognize]
reconnoissance or reconnoissance
[C18: from French, from Old French reconoistre to explore, recognize]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

1810, from Fr. reconnaissance "act of surveying," lit. "recognition," from O.Fr. reconoissance (see recognizance). U.S. military abbreviation recon is attested from 1918.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
It has long continued to run reconnaissance missions across the border.
We've certainly helped by providing surveillance and reconnaissance.
They are now used for reconnaissance and as porters.
Agent fly may well be ordered out on reconnaissance missions.
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