Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
From Middle English dechen, from Old English dēcan (“to smear, plaster, daub”), of unknown origin. Perhaps related to Old English deccan (“to cover”), a variant of Old English þeccan (“to cover, cover over, conceal”). More at deck, thatch.
- (transitive) To smear, daub, plaster, or impregnate, especially with dirt which becomes hard and ingrained.