Draft means to draw, both in the sense of sketching an image onto paper, but also in terms of pulling — a draft horse draws a wagon, a draft of air is drawn into your lungs when you take a breath.

A cold draft is a current of cold air being drawn indoors. To draft someone into the army means to draw them into service, or make them serve. When you are drafting, or writing, a draft of a paper on the military draft in the U.S., you want to let your ideas flow freely. Then, in your next draft, you can work on filling in holes and edit the language down to what you really want to say.

Primary Meanings of draft

a current of air (usually coming into a chimney or room or vehicle)
any of the various versions in the development of a written work
draw up an outline or sketch for something
a serving of drink (usually alcoholic) drawn from a keg
the act of moving a load by drawing or pulling
compulsory military service
engage somebody to enter the army
Full Definitions of draft

n a current of air (usually coming into a chimney or room or vehicle)

a strong upward air current
a strong downward air current
Type of:
air current, current of air, wind
air moving (sometimes with considerable force) from an area of high pressure to an area of low pressure

n a regulator for controlling the flow of air in a fireplace

Type of:
any of various controls or devices for regulating or controlling fluid flow, pressure, temperature, etc.

n any of the various versions in the development of a written work

“a preliminary draft
“the final draft of the constitution”
draft copy
Type of:
text, textual matter
the words of something written

n a document ordering the payment of money; drawn by one person or bank on another

bill of exchange, order of payment
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a draft in excess of the credit balance
foreign bill, foreign draft
a bill of exchange that is drawn in one country and made payable in another
inland bill
a bill of exchange that is both drawn and made payable in the same country
a draft for the amount of a dishonored draft plus the costs and charges of drafting again
trade acceptance
a bill of exchange for a specific purchase; drawn on the buyer by the seller and bearing the buyer's acceptance
bank draft, banker's draft
a draft drawn by a bank against funds deposited in another bank
dividend warrant
an order of payment (such as a check payable to a shareholder) in which a dividend is paid
money order, postal order
a written order for the payment of a sum to a named individual; obtainable and payable at a post office
acceptance, banker's acceptance
banking: a time draft drawn on and accepted by a bank
bank check, check, cheque
a written order directing a bank to pay money
sight bill, sight draft
a draft payable on presentation
time bill, time draft
a draft payable at a specified future date
bad check, bad cheque
a check that is dishonored on presentation because of insufficient funds
a bank check drawn on insufficient funds at another bank in order to take advantage of the float
a bank check that has been fraudulently altered to increase its face value
counter check
a blank check provided by a bank for the convenience of customers who are making withdrawals
giro, giro cheque
a check given by the British government to someone who is unemployed; it can be cashed either at a bank or at the post office
paycheck, payroll check
a check issued in payment of wages or salary
certified check, certified cheque
a check containing certification that the person who issued the check has sufficient funds on deposit to cover payment
personal check, personal cheque
a check drawn against funds deposited in your personal checking account
cashier's check, cashier's cheque, treasurer's check, treasurer's cheque
a check issued by the officer of a bank on the banks own account (not that of a private person)
blank check, blank cheque
a check that has been signed but with the amount payable left blank
medicare check, medicare payment
a check reimbursing an aged person for the expenses of health care
Type of:
negotiable instrument
an unconditional order or promise to pay an amount of money

n a preliminary sketch of a design or picture

rough drawing
Type of:
sketch, study
preliminary drawing for later elaboration

v draw up an outline or sketch for something

draft a speech”
Type of:
compose, indite, pen, write
produce a literary work

v make a blueprint of

blueprint, draught
Type of:
design, plan
make a design of; plan out in systematic, often graphic form

n a serving of drink (usually alcoholic) drawn from a keg

“they served beer on draft
draught, potation, tipple
a hearty draft
Type of:
a single serving of a beverage

n a dose of liquid medicine

“he took a sleeping draft
Type of:
dosage, dose
a measured portion of medicine taken at any one time

n a large and hurried swallow

draught, gulp, swig
Type of:
deglutition, drink, swallow
the act of swallowing

n the act of moving a load by drawing or pulling

draught, drawing
Type of:
pull, pulling
the act of pulling; applying force to move something toward or with you

n the depth of a vessel's keel below the surface (especially when loaded)

Type of:
deepness, depth
the extent downward or backward or inward

n compulsory military service

conscription, muster, selective service
levy, levy en masse
the act of drafting into military service
Type of:
militarisation, militarization, mobilisation, mobilization
act of assembling and putting into readiness for war or other emergency: "mobilization of the troops"

v engage somebody to enter the army

enlist, muster in
discharge, muster out
release from military service
levy, raise, recruit
cause to assemble or enlist in the military
Type of:
enrol, enroll, enter, inscribe, recruit
register formally as a participant or member

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