Re*con"nois*sance, Re*con"nais*sance (r?-k?n"n?s-s?ns), n. [F. See Recognizance.]
The act of reconnoitering; preliminary examination or survey.
Specifically: (a) Geol.
An examination or survey of a region in reference to its general geological character
. (b) Engin.
An examination of a region as to its general natural features, preparatory to a more particular survey for the purposes of triangulation, or of determining the location of a public work
. (c) Mil.
An examination of a territory, or of an enemy's position, for the purpose of obtaining information necessary for directing military operations; a preparatory expedition.
Reconnoissance in force Mil., a demonstration or attack by a large force of troops for the purpose of discovering the position and strength of an enemy.
© Webster 1913.