The Alternative English Dictionary

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Colourful extracts from Wiktionary. Slang, vulgarities, profanities, slurs, interjections, colloquialisms and more.

Entries

Dubyaphobia etymology Dubya + phobia
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) The fear or hatred of George W. Bush.
duchess etymology From Old French duchesse pronunciation
  • /ˈdʌ.tʃəs/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. The female spouse or widow of a duke.
    • 2012, Caroline Davies, Duke and Duchess of Cambridge announce they are expecting first baby (in The Guardian, 3 December 2012) The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have ended months of intense speculation by announcing they are expecting their first child, but were forced to share their news earlier than hoped because of the Duchess's admission to hospital on Monday.
  2. The female ruler of a duchy (where women can reign).
related terms:
  • archduchess
  • grand duchess
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (UK, informal) to court or curry favour for political or business advantage; to flatter obsequious.
    • 1956, John Thomas Lang, I Remember, [http//books.google.com.au/books?id=eknRAAAAMAAJ&q=%22duchessing%22|%22duchessed%22+-intitle:%22%22+-inauthor:%22%22&dq=%22duchessing%22|%22duchessed%22+-intitle:%22%22+-inauthor:%22%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=eFFGT_CbLYmPigKUnqDbDQ&redir_esc=y page 64], On arrival in England he was “duchessed” in a manner that no Australian Prime Minister has ever been “duchessed” before or since. Northcliffe was looking for someone around whom he could build a campaign against Asquith. Hughes filled the bill nicely.
    • 1996, , , 2003, [http//books.google.com.au/books?id=0KRb4dFJdXwC&pg=PA46&dq=%22duchessing%22|%22duchessed%22+-intitle:%22%22+-inauthor:%22%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=uVJGT8SrM6WeiQK2nu3aDQ&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=%22duchessing%22|%22duchessed%22%20-intitle%3A%22%22%20-inauthor%3A%22%22&f=false page 46], ‘A word to the wise, Murray. Those wogs you′ve been duchessing at Ethnic Affairs have got nothing on the culture vultures. Tear the flesh right off your bones, they will.’
    • 2004, , A New Britannia, Fourth Edition, [http//books.google.com.au/books?id=eJy4y4X92kYC&pg=PA66&dq=%22duchessing%22|%22duchessed%22+-intitle:%22%22+-inauthor:%22%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=uVJGT8SrM6WeiQK2nu3aDQ&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=%22duchessing%22|%22duchessed%22%20-intitle%3A%22%22%20-inauthor%3A%22%22&f=false page 66], The traditional version of Hughes′ decision to introduce conscription gives central importance to his visit to London in April 1916 where it is alleged he was duchessed and deceived concerning recruitment figures.
    • 2006, Jacqueline Dickenson, Renegades and Rats: Betrayal and the Remaking of Radical Organisations in Britain and Australia, [http//books.google.com.au/books?id=hOSHWOa9B7kC&pg=PA144&dq=%22duchessing%22|%22duchessed%22+-intitle:%22%22+-inauthor:%22%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=uE5GT4iiDKqpiAKHxeXbDQ&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=%22duchessing%22|%22duchessed%22%20-intitle%3A%22%22%20-inauthor%3A%22%22&f=false page 144], But by 1914 Grayson had, according to Groves, been thoroughly duchessed, believing that he could enjoy the good things in life and still serve the cause.
duchessy etymology duchess + y
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (informal) Like a duchess; with a superior feminine elegance.
    • 1906, Warwick Deeping, Bess of the woods And she had a figure, too; one of them big, duchessy-looking ladies she was, as would make you think as they'd need extra webbing in their beds.
    • 1945, Joseph Chamberlain Furnas, How America lives Fortunately Kathryn looks her most duchessy in evening gowns and Bo is unusually philosophical about boiled shirts.
Synonyms: duchesslike
duck pronunciation
  • {{enPR}}, /dʌk/
  • {{audio}}, {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
etymology 1 From Middle English *dukken, from Old English *ducan, *duccan, related to Scots dulk, Middle Dutch ducken, Low German ducken, German ducken, Danish dukke, dykke; a secondary verb akin to Middle English duken, douken, from Old English *dūcan, from Proto-Germanic *dūkaną, probably from Proto-Indo-European *dʰewb- (whence Proto-Germanic *dūbaną). Related also to Scots dook, douk, Western Frisian dûke, Dutch duiken, Low German duken, German tauchen, Swedish dyka.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (intransitive) To lower the head or body in order to prevent it from being struck by something.
  2. (transitive) To lower (something) into water; to thrust or plunge under liquid and suddenly withdraw.
    • Fielding Adams, after ducking the squire twice or thrice, leaped out of the tub.
  3. (intransitive) To go under the surface of water and immediately reappear; to plunge one's head into water or other liquid.
    • Dryden In Tiber ducking thrice by break of day.
  4. (transitive) To lower (the head) in order to prevent it from being struck by something. {{rfquotek}}
  5. (intransitive) To bow.
    • Shakespeare The learned pate / Ducks to the golden fool.
  6. (transitive) To evade doing something.
  7. (transitive) To lower the volume of (a sound) so that other sounds in the mix can be heard more clearly.
    • 2007, Alexander U. Case, Sound FX: unlocking the creative potential of recording studio effects (page 183) The music is ducked under the voice.
Synonyms: (to lower the head) duck down, (to lower into the water) dip, dunk, (to lower in order to prevent it from being struck by something) dip
etymology 2 From Middle English ducke, dukke, doke, dokke, douke, duke, from Old English duce, dūce, from Old English *dūcan, from Proto-Germanic *dūkaną. See verb above. Cognate with Scots duik, duke, dook, Danish dukand, dykand, Swedish dykfågel, Middle Dutch duycker, Low German düker.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. An aquatic bird of the family Anatidae, having a flat bill and webbed feet.
  2. Specifically, an adult female duck; contrasted with drake and with duckling.
  3. (uncountable) The flesh of a duck used as food.
  4. (cricket) A batsman's score of zero after getting out. (short for duck's egg, since the digit "0" is round like an egg.)
  5. (slang) A playing card with the rank of two.
  6. A partly-flooded cave passage with limited air space.
  7. A building intentionally constructed in the shape of an everyday object to which it is related. A luncheonette in the shape of a coffee cup is particularly conspicuous, as is intended of an architectural duck or folly.
    • 2007, Cynthia Blair, "It Happened on Long Island: 1988—Suffolk County Adopts the Big Duck," , 21 Feb.: The Big Duck has influenced the world of architecture; any building that is shaped like its product is called a ‘duck’.
  8. A marble to be shot at with another marble (the shooter) in children's games.
  9. (US) A cairn used to mark a trail.
  10. One of the weights used to hold a spline in place for the purpose of drawing a curve.
hyponyms:
  • (bird) Anas platyrhynchos (domesticus), Mallard-derived domestic breeds, including Pekin, Rouen, Campbell, Call, Runner; Cairina moschata, Muscovy duck
etymology 3 From Dutch doek, from Middle Dutch doeck, doec, from odt *dōc, from Proto-Germanic *dōkaz, from Proto-Indo-European *dwōg-, *dwōk-. Cognate with German Tuch, Swedish duk, Icelandic dúkur. Alternative forms: dook, doock (Scotland)
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A tightly-woven cotton fabric used as sailcloth.
    • 1912, , "The Woman At The Store", from Selected Short Stories: He was dressed in a Jaeger vest—a pair of blue duck trousers, fastened round the waist with a plaited leather belt.
  2. (in plural) Trousers made of such material.
    • 1918, Rebecca West, The Return of the Soldier, Virago 2014, p. 56: And they would go up and find old Allington, in white ducks, standing in the fringe of long grasses and cow-parsley on the other edge of the island […].
etymology 4 , and dialects of the former territory of (central England). From Old English ducas. Compare Middle English duc and duk.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A term of endearment; pet; darling. And hold-fast is the only dog, my duck (William Shakespeare - The Life of King Henry the Fifth, Act 2, Scene 3).
  2. (British dialect, chiefly, East of the Pennines) Dear, mate (informal way of addressing a friend or stranger). Ay up duck, ow'a'tha?
Synonyms: See
duck's arse
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (British, informal, coarse) A hairstyle in which the hair is swept back along the sides of the head to meet in a point at the back, thus resembling the tail feather of a duck.
Synonyms: ducktail (euphemistic)
duck-arsed Alternative forms: duck arsed, duckarsed
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (chiefly, British, indelicate, sometimes, insulting) Having or pertaining to broad hips and large, bulging buttock.
    • 1949, , Tarry Flynn: A Novel, Devin-Adair Co., page 78: All the girls, with the exception of May Callan, were squat, and as the country phrase had it—"duck-arsed." They were made for work, for breeding.
    • 1963, , The Collector, Pan Books paperback ed. (1965), p. 178: I'm delighted that you should admire Beecham. A pompous little duckarsed bandmaster who stood against everything creative in the art of his time.
  2. (chiefly, British, informal) Having or pertaining to a hairstyle of the type called a duck's arse.
duckbill etymology duck + bill
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) The duck-billed platypus.
  2. (informal) A hadrosaur.
  3. {{rfv-sense}} The paddlefish.
    • Mollusca, Crustacea, Vertebrata, 1004, yz1EAQAAMAAJ, 1880, Polyodon spathula Walbaum (“Duck-Bill Cat”). — This fish, which is sometimes called “paddle fish,” from the peculiar … The “duck-bill” is very abundant in the lower Ohio, so much so that it is often a nuisance to fishermen who use seines.
    • {{quote-journal}}
    • {{quote-journal}}
  4. A fish of the family {{taxlink}}
    1. {{taxlink}}
  5. {{taxlink}}
related terms:
  • duckbilled, duck-billed
duck butter
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (vulgar) Semen.
duck egg etymology From the shape of an egg, resembling the digit 0. Compare goose egg.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) Zero; nothing.
duckface etymology duck + face, suggesting a duck's bill.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang) A facial expression in which the lip are pushed outwards in a pout.
    • 2012, Tara French, Broken Harbour She turned pages in the album, gave a wry little smile to a shot of the four lads making duckfaces and faux-gangster hand signs.
{{commonscat}}
duck fart
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A layered (not mixed) drink made of Kahlua, Bailey's Irish cream and Crown Royal (in that order, and ideally with just a float of Crown). After a bad day of duck hunting nothing goes down better than a good duck fart.
  2. (colloquial) A sound made when a stone is thrown into the water where the water breaks twice creating a longer sounding "plop". Jimmy was skipping stones down by the bridge the other day. meanwhile I was up top trying to get my stones to "duck fart".
  3. (colloquial) A special sounding created when flatulence is released shortly after or during use of a shower, bath, or pool. Due to the moist areas involve, the air passing through creates a gross noise similar to a duck's quack. I'm not sure, but judging by the duck farts I heard in there, you don't want to use it right now.
  4. (slang) Something insignificant or silent.
  5. (baseball, colloquial) A ball hit by a batter into the the gray area between the infield and outfield, usually tailing away from whoever is trying to catch it. Also known as a dying quail. Surhoff blooped a weak duck fart into shallow right field.
duckfucker etymology From duck + fucker.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang, derogatory, offensive, vulgar) Term of abuse.
duck soup
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. Used other than as an idiom: duck, soup
  2. (slang, idiomatic) Something which is easy; a piece of cake.
Synonyms: breeze, cakewalk, cinch, doddle, piece of cake, walk in the park, walkover
duck tape {{wikipedia}} etymology From duck, due to the make-up of the tape. The term is a trademark.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A durable, cohesive tape. If you can't fix it with duck tape, it's not worth fixing.
Synonyms: (duct tape) duct tape, gray tape, gaffer's tape, gaff tape, gaffer tape
anagrams:
  • tacked up
duckweed {{wikipedia}} etymology duck + weed
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. Any of several reduced floating aquatic plant in the subfamily {{taxlink}} of the family Araceae.
    • 1909, H. G. Wells, The Beautiful Suit But his face was a face of such happiness that, had you seen it, you would have understood indeed how that he had died happy, never knowing that cool and streaming silver for the duckweed in the pond.
ducky {{wikipedia}}
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (slang, archaic) Great; going well; proceeding in an eminently agreeable fashion. Farnesworth smiled contentedly as he read the stock ticker; all was ducky on Wall Street.
    • 1930, Isn't this the duckiest little leather skirt you ever saw?
    • 1942, , The Catbird Seat: Fortunately, she had bragged to everybody about her ducky first-floor apartment in the perfectly darling three-story red-brick.
Synonyms: fine, peachy, swell
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A pet name used affectionately. "Morning, ducky!" said Roderick, as he gave his partner a quick peck on the cheek and sat down to breakfast.
  2. (childish) A duck (aquatic bird).
    • 1990, Donna LeBlanc, You can't quit until you know what's eating you Do little things for your Inner Child, like taking bubble baths. Invite a rubber ducky to play with you...
Synonyms: darling, hon
dud etymology Ultimately from dudde, of uncertain origin beyond that. pronunciation
  • {{enPR}}, /dʌd/
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) A device or machine that is useless because it does not work properly or has failed to work, such as a bomb, or explosive projectile.
  2. A lottery ticket that does not give a payout.
  3. Something that doesn't function properly
    • 2014, A teacher, "Choosing a primary school: a teacher's guide for parents", The Guardian, 23 September 2014: At the end of the day, the vast majority of primary schools are vibrant, friendly places and you may struggle to choose one because they all seem so great. Primary schools tend to have the feelgood factor. If you just aren't feeling it, this one's probably a dud.
  4. (obsolete) Clothes, now always used in plural form duds.
  5. A loser, an unlucky person
Synonyms: (losing lottery ticket) blank
anagrams:
  • DDU
dude Alternative forms: dood (nonstandard), dewd (nonstandard), d00d (Internet slang) etymology Of unknown origin. First attested in 1883{{R:Dictionary.com}}{{R:Merriam Webster Online}} as a New York City slang term of contempt for a "fastidious man, fop".{{R:Online Etymology Dictionary}} Possibly related to dawdle, to German Low German Dudeldop, Dudendop, from gml dudendop, or to Saterland Frisian Duddigegen. More likely derived from "Yankee Doodle",{{cite journal|title=Comments on Etymology|issue=October-November|date=2013|author=Popik and Cohen}} or dudes (old rags, cf duds), and dudesman a scarecrow.{{cite journal|author=Hill, Richard|date=1994|title=You’ve Come a Long Way, Dude—A History|work=American Speech|issue=69|page=321–27}} cited in {{cite journal|title=Dude|author=Scott F. Kiesling|work=American Speech|vol=79|issue=3|date=2004}} pronunciation
  • {{enPR}}, /d(j)uːd/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}} {{wikipedia}}
  1. (slang) A man.
  2. (slang, used in the vocative) A term of address for a man. Relax, dude.
  3. (originally) An inexperienced cowboy.
  4. (slang) A tourist.
  5. (archaic) A dandy, a man who is very concerned about his dress and appearance.
Synonyms: (man) bloke (British), chap (dated British), cove (dated British), guy, (term of address for a man) mate (British), (dandy) dandy, fop, masher, See also
interjection:
  1. (slang) A term conveying excitement. Dude, I’m glad you finally called.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. to address someone with the term of address dude
dude-bro etymology dude + bro Alternative forms: dudebro
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang) A hypermasculine man, especially one who is misogynist and/or homophobic
    • {{quote-magazine }}
    • {{quote-book }}
    • {{quote-news }}
    • {{seemorecites}}
dudette
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang, often humorous) The female equivalent of dude (in the slang senses).
anagrams:
  • duetted
duds pronunciation
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-plural noun}}
  1. (New England, British, dated) Clothing, especially for work or of rough appearance.
    • 1890, William Morris, News from Nowhere, in the journal . (First published in book form 1890.) I looked at what I could see of my rough blue duds, which I had plenty of opportunity of contrasting with the gay attire of the citizens we had come across;…
    • 1913, Joseph C. Lincoln, 7 , [http://openlibrary.org/works/OL5535161W Mr. Pratt's Patients] , ““I don't know how you and the ‘head,’ as you call him, will get on, but I do know that if you call my duds a ‘livery’ again there'll be trouble. […]””
    • 1997, Skiing (volume 50, number 4) We were hard-pressed to find anyone who actually skis in these designer duds, but someone's buying the stuff: Hilfiger's ski and boardwear line grosses around $25 million per year …
  2. plural of dud
Synonyms: (clothing)
  • (standard) clothes, clothing, outfit
  • (slang) garb, kit, togs
, (standard) clothes, clothing, outfit, (slang) garb, kit, togs
anagrams:
  • sudd
Dueser etymology due + ser
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang) A fan of the television series Due South.
Duesy
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) A Duesenberg automobile.
DUFF
acronym: {{rfc-header}} {{en-acronym}}
  1. (derogatory) Dumb/Designated Ugly Fat Friend, an attractive woman's less attractive friend
duff pronunciation
  • /dʌf/ {{rhymes}}
etymology 1 Representing a northern pronunciation of dough.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (dialectal) Dough.
  2. A stiff flour pudding, often with dried fruit, boiled in a cloth bag, or steamed
    • 1901, , short story The Ghosts of Many Christmases, published in Children of the Bush : The storekeeper had sent them an unbroken case of canned plum pudding, and probably by this time he was wondering what had become of that blanky case of duff.
etymology 2 Origin uncertain; probably imitative.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (Scotland, US) Decaying vegetable matter on the forest floor.
    • 1999, George RR Martin, A Clash of Kings, Bantam 2011, p. 366: Out under the trees, some rangers had found enough duff and dry wood to start a fire beneath a slanting ridge of slate.
  2. Coal dust.
  3. (slang) The bits left in the bottom of the bag after the booty has been consumed, like crumbs.
  4. Something spurious or fake; a counterfeit, a worthless thing.
  5. (baseball, slang, 1800s) An error.
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (UK) Worthless; not working properly, defective. Why do I always get a shopping trolley with duff wheels?
    • 1996, , State of Desire, page 155, From its surface, he insisted, plain food became ambrosia, water nectar, and the duffest dope would blow your mind.
    • 2003, , page 315, One will win the coveted Hollywood Science Award, which, in Robert′s words “is given in recognition of the duffest science in movie-dom” so it will be worth tuning in to find out what movie stunt wins.
    • 2009, , Paperboy, page 225, All the other parts were played by a gallery of Dickensian character actors, including Thorley Walters, Francis Matthews and, yes, Michael Ripper, who lent gravitas to the duffest dialogue lines.
Synonyms: (defective) bum (US)
etymology 3 Origin uncertain; perhaps the same as Etymology 1, above.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (US, slang) The buttocks.
etymology 4 Originally thieves' slang; probably a back-formation from duffer.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (slang, obsolete) To disguise something to make it look new.
  2. (Australia) To alter the branding of stolen cattle; to steal cattle.
  3. (British, slang, with "up") To beat up. I heard Nick got duffed up behind the shopping centre at the weekend.
  4. (US, golf) To hit the ground behind the ball.
related terms:
  • duffer
duffel Alternative forms: duffle etymology From the Belgian town of . pronunciation
  • /dʌfəl/
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A kind of coarse woolen cloth, having a thick nap or frieze.
  2. (US, colloquial) Outfit or supplies, collectively; kit.
anagrams:
  • duffle
  • luffed
duffer pronunciation
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
adjective: {{head}}
  1. en-comparative of duff
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) An incompetent or clumsy person.
    • 1899, , , Besides, I was anxious to take the wheel, the man in pink pyjamas showing himself a hopeless duffer at the business.
  2. (sports) A player having little skill, especially a golfer who duff.
  3. (archaic) A pedlar or hawker, especially one selling cheap or substandard goods.
  4. (archaic) Cheap or substandard goods sold by a duffer.
  5. A cow that does not produce milk.
    • 1908, Proceedings of the Agricultural Society of Trinidad and Tobago, Volume 8, page 116, We have some good cows in this State, but, unfortunately, we have too many duffer cows that are not only being fed and milked at a loss hut are eating up a portion of the profit of the good cow which is being milked alongside them.
    • 1934', Victorian Department of Agriculture, Journal of Agriculture, Volume 32, page 293, The truth is that cattlemen love a typical cow for her beauty and symmetry of form ; but every herd-testing dairyman knows that an ugly animal may be a good producer, while many a beautiful cow is a duffer.
  6. (Australia, dated) A cattle thief; one who alter the brand of cattle.
    • 2004, Deborah Bird Rose, Reports from a Wild Country: Ethics for Decolonisation, page 112, Judy was an associate (‘stud’) of a Whitefella cattle duffer named Brigalow Bill (aka WJJ Ward).
    • 2010, Evan McHugh, The Drovers In the mid-1860s a duffer named James Harnell, who went by the nickname Narran Jim, had taken stock he′d stolen from the district around Culgoa and Narran rivers across Queensland to the Cooper.…An alert Bulloo Downs stockman contacted the police, and when Police Inspector Fitzgerald and eight Aboriginal troopers tracked Narran Jim and surrounded him while he was sleeping, the cattle duffer woke to find himself looking down the barrel of Fitzgerald′s revolver and seven years in jail.
    • 2011, Clancy Tucker, Gunnedah Hero, unnumbered page, The cattle duffer′s escape would have been impeded by those young ones. Calves can be unruly unless you move them carefully in the company of their mothers.
  7. Any common domestic pigeon.
Synonyms: See also
anagrams:
  • ruffed
dufus etymology Possibly from German doof (stupid). Alternative forms: doofus
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (colloquial) An inept or stupid person.
duh pronunciation
  • (US) /dʌ/
  • (Australia) /dʌ/
  • (US) {{audio}}
  • (UK) /dɜː/
  • {{rhymes}}
interjection: {{en-interj}}
  1. Disdainful indication that something is obvious. It's hot in the desert. - Well, duh!
  2. Indication of mock stupidity. Duhhh, I'm Jasmine, I can't even tie my shoe laces right!
Synonyms: obviously!, doy, no duh (Australian, American), no shit, you don't say, no kidding, derp, seriously? Nah (sarcastic)
antonyms:
  • really?
related terms:
  • d'oh
  • huh
  • oh
  • ah
anagrams:
  • HUD
duke {{wikipedia}} etymology From Old French duc, from Latin dux. Displaced native Old English heretoga. Was present as duc in late Old English, from the same Latin source. The 'fist' sense is thought to be where Duke(s) of York = fork. fork is itself cockney slang for hand, and thus fist. pronunciation
  • (UK) /djuːk/, /dʒuːk/
  • (US) /duːk/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. The male ruler of a duchy (female equivalent: duchess).
  2. The sovereign of a small state.
  3. A high title of nobility; the male holder of a dukedom.
  4. A grand duke.
  5. (slang, usually in plural) A fist. Put up your dukes!
hypernyms:
  • nobility
coordinate terms: {{checksense}}
  • prince, monarch, baron, count, countess, earl, marquess, marquis, viscount
related terms: {{rel-top}}
  • ducal
  • duchess
{{rel-mid}}
  • duchy
{{rel-bottom}}
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive) To hit or beat with the fists.
dull Alternative forms: dul, dulle (all obsolete) etymology From Middle English dull, dul (also dyll, dill, dwal), from Old English dol, from Proto-Germanic *dulaz, a variant of *dwalaz, from Proto-Indo-European *dʰwel-, *dʰewel-. Cognate with Scots dull, doll, Northern Frisian dol, Dutch dol, Low German dul, dol, German toll, Danish dval, Icelandic dulur. pronunciation
  • /dʌl/
    • also (US) /dl̩/
      • {{homophones}}
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. Lacking the ability to cut easily; not sharp. exampleAll these knives are dull.
  2. Boring; not exciting or interesting. exampleHe sat through the dull lecture and barely stayed awake. exampleWhen does having a dull personality ever get you a girlfriend? Even if you get one, how does being dull help you keep a relationship for over a year?
  3. Not shiny; having a matte finish or no particular luster or brightness. exampleChoose a dull finish to hide fingerprints. a dull fire or lamp;  a dull red or yellow;  {{nowrap}} mirror
    • Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882) As turning the logs will make a dull fire burn, so changes of study a dull brain.
    • {{RQ:BLwnds TLdgr}} A great bargain also had been the excellent Axminster carpet which covered the floor; as, again, the arm-chair in which Bunting now sat forward, staring into the dull, small fire. In fact, that arm-chair had been an extravagance of Mrs. Bunting. She had wanted her husband to be comfortable after the day's work was done, and she had paid thirty-seven shillings for the chair.
  4. Not bright or intelligent; stupid; slow of understanding.
  5. Sluggish, listless.
    • Bible, Gospel of Matthew xiii. 15 This people's heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing.
    • Edmund Spenser (c.1552–1599) O, help my weak wit and sharpen my dull tongue.
    • 1918, W. B. Maxwell, 7 , [http://openlibrary.org/works/OL1097634W The Mirror and the Lamp] , “[…] St. Bede's at this period of its history was perhaps the poorest and most miserable parish in the East End of London. Close-packed, crushed by the buttressed height of the railway viaduct, rendered airless by huge walls of factories, it at once banished lively interest from a stranger's mind and left only a dull oppression of the spirit.”
  6. Cloudy, overcast. exampleIt's a dull day.
  7. Insensible; unfeeling.
    • Beaumont and Fletcher (1603-1625) Think me not / So dull a devil to forget the loss / Of such a matchless wife.
  8. Heavy; lifeless; inert.
    • William Shakespeare (c.1564–1616) the dull earth
    • Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882) As turning the logs will make a dull fire burn, so changes of study a dull brain.
  9. (of pain etc) Not intense; felt indistinct or only slight. Pressing on the bruise produces a dull pain.
Synonyms: See also , See also , (not shiny) lackluster, matte
antonyms:
  • bright
  • intelligent
  • sharp
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive) To render dull; to remove or blunt an edge or something that was sharp. Years of misuse have dulled the tools.
    • Francis Bacon This … dulled their swords.
  2. (transitive) To soften, moderate or blunt; to make dull, stupid, or sluggish; to stupefy. He drinks to dull the pain.
    • Shakespeare Those [drugs] she has / Will stupefy and dull the sense a while.
    • Trench Use and custom have so dulled our eyes.
  3. (intransitive) To lose a sharp edge; to become dull. A razor will dull with use.
  4. To render dim or obscure; to sully; to tarnish.
    • Francis Bacon dulls the mirror
Synonyms: dullen
dumb pronunciation
  • /dʌm/
  • {{rhymes}}
etymology 1 From Middle English dumb, from Old English dumb, from Proto-Germanic *dumbaz, from Proto-Indo-European *dʰeubʰ-. Cognate with Scots dumb, Northern Frisian dom, domme, Western Frisian dom, Dutch dom, German dumm, Swedish dum, Icelandic dumbur. See also deaf. In ordinary spoken English, a phrase like "He is dumb" is interpreted as "He is stupid" rather than "He lacks the power of speech". The latter example, however, is the original sense of the word. The senses of stupid, unintellectual, and pointless developed under the influence of the German word dumm.
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (dated) Unable to speak; lacking power of speech. exampleHis younger brother was born dumb, and communicated with sign language.
    • Hooker to unloose the very tongues even of dumb creatures
  2. (dated) Silent; unaccompanied by words. dumb show
    • Shakespeare This spirit, dumb to us, will speak to him.
    • {{quote-book }}
    • J. C. Shairp to pierce into the dumb past
  3. (informal, pejorative, especially of a person) extremely stupid. You are so dumb! You don't even know how to make toast!
  4. (figuratively) Pointless, foolish, lacking intellectual content or value. This is dumb! We're driving in circles! We should have asked for directions an hour ago! Brendan had the dumb job of moving boxes from one conveyor belt to another.
  5. Lacking brightness or clearness, as a colour.
    • De Foe Her stern was painted of a dumb white or dun color.
Synonyms: (unable to speak) dumbstruck, mute, speechless, wordless, (stupid) feeble-minded, idiotic, moronic, stupid, (pointless, foolish, unintellectual) banal, brainless, dopey, silly, stupid, ridiculous, vulgar
etymology 2 From Middle English dumbien, from Old English dumbian (more commonly in compound ādumbian), from Proto-Germanic *dumbijaną, *dumbōną, from Proto-Indo-European *dʰeubʰ-. Cognate with German dummen.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. To silence.
    • 1911, Lindsay Swift, William Lloyd Garrison, p. 272, The paralysis of the Northern conscience, the dumbing of the Northern voice, were coming to an end.
  2. (transitive) To make stupid.
    • 2003, Angela Calabrese Barton, Teaching Science for Social Justice, p. 124, I think she's dumbing us down, so we won't be smarter than her.
  3. (transitive) To represent as stupid.
    • 2004, Stephen Oppenheimer, The Real Eve: Modern Man's Journey Out of Africa, p. 107, Bad-mouthing Neanderthals . . . is symptomatic of a need to exclude and even demonize. . . . I suggest that the unproven dumbing of the Neanderthals is an example of the same cultural preconception.
  4. (transitive) To reduce the intellectual demands of.
    • 2002, Deborah Meier, In Schools We Trust: Creating Communities of Learning in an Era of Testing, p. 126, The ensuing storm caused the department to lower the bar—amid protests that this was dumbing the test down—so that only 80 percent of urban kids would fail.
dumbarse etymology dumb + arse.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (UK, vulgar, slang) a stupid person.
anagrams:
  • Bermudas
dumb as a bag of hammers Alternative forms: dumb as a sack of hammers etymology {{rfe}} pronunciation {{rfp}}
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (slang) Remarkably stupid.
dumb as dirt
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (slang) Extremely stupid.
dumbass etymology dumb + ass. pronunciation
  • /ˈdʌm.æs/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (US, vulgar, slang) A stupid or foolish person. The dumbass walked off with my car keys and left me hers.
Synonyms: See also
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. stupid, foolish That dumbass driver ruined my car!
dumb ass
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (vulgar, slang) stupid thing or stupid action "Loads of freethinkers have re-written that dumb-ass hymn." "Marrying that drunkard was the most dumb-ass thing I ever did."
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (vulgar, slang) stupid person "Better a smart-ass than a dumb-ass any day."
related terms:
  • hard-ass
dumb-ass
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (vulgar) alternative spelling of dumb ass
dumbassdom etymology From dumbass + dom.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (neologism, slang, vulgar) The state or essence of being a dumbass.
Synonyms: dumbasshood (neologism, slang, vulgar)
dumbassed
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (US, vulgar) stupid.
dumbassery etymology dumbass + ery
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang, vulgar) Immature, foolish behavior; behavior typical of a dumbass
dumbasshood etymology From dumbass + hood.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (neologism, slang, vulgar) The state or essence of being a dumbass.
Synonyms: dumbassdom (neologism, slang, vulgar)
dumbbell {{wikipedia}} pronunciation
  • /ˈdʌm.bɛl/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (weightlifting) A weight consisting of two disk or sphere attached to a short bar; used for exercise and weight training
  2. (pejorative) A stupid person
dumb blonde
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (pejorative) A female preoccupied with appearance while neglecting intellectual pursuits, (often taken to extremes); a blonde bimbo. Have you found the canonical list of dumb blonde jokes on the internet yet?
  2. By extension, infrequently used to refer to blond males.
Humor or otherwise, using the term to refer to a male will usually cause confusion.
dumb down
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (idiomatic, transitive) To convey some subject matter in simple terms, avoiding technical or academic language, especially in a way that is considered condescend. The public won't understand this concept. We need to dumb down our explanation of it.
  2. (idiomatic, intransitive) To become simpler in expression or content; to become unacceptably simplistic. Television has really dumbed down over the past ten years.
Synonyms: (convey subject matter in simple terms): oversimplify, downplay, simplify, trivialise, vulgarise / vulgarize
dumb fuck etymology dumb + fuck
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (vulgar, derogatory) An extraordinarily stupid person.
dumb fucker Alternative forms: dumbfucker (uncommon) etymology dumb + fucker
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (vulgar, derogatory) A hated, contemptible, or stupid person.
    • 1996, Family Service America, Families International (Milwaukee, Wis.), Families in society: the journal of contemporary human services: Volume 77 The names his par- called him included "stupid little shit," id, when he resisted his father's ices, "dumbfucker."
    • 2009, Kent Meyers, Twisted Tree, page 90 And right then the dumbfucker decides to wake up and look around.
    • year missing, Thomas Clarion, Behind the Glittering Lights of Bordellos and Brothels: Thailand Vol 2, page 213 “You bloody dumbfucker, I paid for you and now you don't want to go?”
Synonyms: stupid fuck, dumbass, moron, stupid fucker
dumbfuckery etymology From dumbfuck + ery.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang, vulgar) Stupidity.
Dumbfuckistan etymology From dumbfuck + stan.
proper noun: {{en-proper noun}}
  1. (pejorative, US, vulgar) red state collectively
dumbhead etymology dumb + head
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal, derogatory) A stupid person.
dumbish etymology dumb + ish
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (colloquial) Quite dumb
dumbishly etymology dumbish + ly
adverb: {{en-adv}}
  1. (rare, colloquial, offensive) In a somewhat dumb manner.
dumble
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (UK, dialectal) A dale with a stream
    • 1859 John Blenkarn, British timber trees: a practical treatise on the raising, management, and value of British timber, G. Routledge, page 110: When a stream runs in a deep dell, particularly in clay districts, the steep banks and stream form what are called a “dumble” in Nottinghamshire.
    • 1999 Paul A. Biggs & Sandra Biggs, Best Tea Shop Walks in Nottinghamshire, Sigma Leisure, page 106: Lambley is famous for its ‘dumbles.’ A dumble being a local name for a shallow dale with a stream. D.H. Lawrence is reputed to have enjoyed walking the Lambley Dumbles.
  2. (slang) A stupid person.
dumbledore {{wikipedia}} {{wikipedia}} Alternative forms: dumble-dor, dumbledor etymology Compound of dumble ‘similar to bumble’ + dor ‘a buzzing flying insect’. pronunciation
  • (RP) /ˈdʌm.bəl.dɔː/
  • (US) /ˈdʌm.bəl.dɔːr/
  • {{audio}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (dialectal) A bumblebee.
    • 1875 Charlotte M Yonge, The Daisy Chain: Those slopes of fresh turf, embroidered with every minute blossom of the moor — thyme, birdsfoot, eyebright, and dwarf purple thistle, buzzed and hummed over by busy, black-tailed, yellow-banded dumbledores.
    • 1899 Thomas Hardy, An August Midnight: A shaded lamp and a waving blind, / And the beat of a clock from a distant floor: / On this scene enter – winged, horned, and spined – / A longlegs, a moth, and a dumbledore
    • 1970 May 21, Evening Telegram, page 3: Now and then a dumbledore or ‘busy bee’ as they are called by some, propelled itself across our path, they being extremely large and heavy this year.
    • 1987 Seán Virgo, Selakhi, Exile Editions, Ltd., page 20: A dumbledore, lured from the plantation, lies on its back, leaping and churning upon Seth’s bright pages.
  2. (dialectal) A beetle, typically a cockchafer or dung beetle.
    • 1964 Transactions of the American Philological Association, American Philological Association, Ginn & Co., page 267: Others may need to be informed that a blastnashun straddlebob is a dumbledore, that is to say, a polyonymous lamellicorn coleopter, cald also a dorbeetle, a dorbug, a maybeetle, a maybug or a cockchafer, a Mflolontha rulgaris.
  3. (dialectal) A dandelion.
    • 1975 Peter J. Scott, Edible Fruits and Herbs of Newfoundland, St. John’s, Memorial University Oxen Pond Botanical Park, page 39: The Dandelion has a number of common names in Newfoundland. These include Dumbledore, Faceclock, and Piss-a-beds.
  4. (slang) A blundering person.
    • 1872 Thomas Hardy, Under the Greenwood Tree, chapter 4: “Miserable dumbledores!” / “Right, William, and so they be—miserable dumbledores!” said the choir with unanimity.
dumbnut
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) A stupid person
dumbshit
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (vulgar, pejorative, colloquial) A stupid person or someone who makes or has just made a significant mistake.
    • {{quote-book }}
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (vulgar, pejorative, colloquial) (of a person) Stupid, or prone to making mistakes
    • {{quote-book }}
dumb shit
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (idiomatic, vulgar, pejorative, colloquial) alternative spelling of dumbshit
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (idiomatic, vulgar, pejorative, colloquial) alternative spelling of dumbshit
dumbsize etymology From dumb + downsize
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (informal) To reduce the number of employee in a business without regard to organizational efficiency, such that its operation become unprofitable or inefficient.
dum dum etymology Named after the arsenal in Calcutta, India.
noun: {{head}}
  1. (informal, firearms) A soft point or hollow point bullet, designed to expand when it hits its target and therefore cause more serious damage.
Alternative forms: dum-dum
dum dum bullet Alternative forms: dum-dum bullet, Dum-Dum bullet, Dum Dum bullet
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang) Hollow bullet designed to pierce bullet-proof vest.
dummy up
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. To make a mock-up or prototype version of something, without some or all off its intended functionality. The carpenters dummied up a set of simple props for the rehearsals.
  2. (informal) To suddenly stop talking When he couldn't think of any more good lies, he just dummied up. Everyone was discussing the new teacher, but when she entered the room they all dummied up.
dump pronunciation
  • /dʌmp/
  • {{rhymes}}
etymology 1 Akin to Old Norse dumpa ( > Danish dumpe)
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A place where waste or garbage is left; a ground or place for dumping ashes, refuse, etc. A toxic waste dump.
  2. A car or boat for dumping refuse, etc.
  3. That which is dumped, especially in a chaotic way; a mess.
  4. (computing) An act of dumping, or its result. The new XML dump is coming soon.
  5. A storage place for supplies, especially military.
  6. An unpleasant, dirty, disreputable, or unfashionable, boring or depressing looking place. This place looks like a dump. Don't feel bad about moving away from this dump.
  7. (vulgar, slang, often with the verb "take") An act of defecation; a defecating. I have to take a dump.
  8. A dull, gloomy state of the mind; sadness; melancholy; low spirits; despondency; ill humor (usually plural). March slowly on in solemn dump. -- . Doleful dumps the mind oppress. -- I was musing in the midst of my dumps. --.
  9. Absence of mind; revery. {{rfquotek}}
  10. (mining) A pile of ore or rock.
  11. (obsolete) A melancholy strain or tune in music; any tune. Tune a deploring dump. Play me some merry dump. --
  12. (obsolete) An old kind of dance. {{rfquotek}}
  13. (historical, Australia) A small coin made by punch a hole in a larger coin.
    • 2002, Paul Swan, Maths Investigations, [http//books.google.com.au/books?id=NBO2OJAtWzwC&pg=PA66&dq=%22dump%22|%22dumps%22+coin+-intitle:%22%22+-inauthor:%22%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=95NHT4KWDe_umAXRgqCcDg&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=%22dump%22|%22dumps%22%20coin%20-intitle%3A%22%22%20-inauthor%3A%22%22&f=false page 66], Basically, to overcome an acute shortage of money in 1813, Governor Lachlan Macquarie bought silver dollars from Spain and then punched the centres out, thereby producing two coins - the ‘holey dollar’ (worth five shillings) and the ‘dump’ (worth one shilling and threepence). Talk about creating money out of nothing—the original silver dollar only cost five shillings! The holey dollar and the dump have been adopted as the symbol for the Macquarie Bank in Australia.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive) To release, especially in large quantities and chaotic manner.
  2. (transitive) To discard; to get rid of something one does not want anymore.
    • {{quote-magazine}}
  3. (transitive, computing) To copy data from a system to another place or system, usually in order to archive it.
  4. (transitive, informal) To end a relationship with.
  5. (transitive) To knock heavily; to stump. {{rfquotek}}
  6. (transitive, US) To put or throw down with more or less of violence; hence, to unload from a cart by tilting it; as, to dump sand, coal, etc. {{rfquotek}}
  7. (transitive, US) To precipitate (especially snow) heavily.
Synonyms: See also
etymology 2 See dumpling.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (UK, archaic) A thick, ill-shapen piece.
  2. (UK, archaic) A lead counter used in the game of chuck-farthing. {{rfquotek}}
dump core
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (intransitive, computing) To generate a core dump.
    • 2007, Jon Masters, Richard Blum, Professional Linux programming Traditionally, UNIX and UNIX-like systems have dumped core or provided a binary output of their state upon crashing.
  2. (slang, computing) To ramble pointlessly at length; especially used in apology Sorry, I dumped core on you.
  3. (slang, computing) To transfer a large quantity of information or knowledge from one person to another, particularly subjects of a technical nature; to lecture Jack dumped core on how to operate the server before he left on holiday.
anagrams:
  • core dump
dumpee etymology dump + ee
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) One who is dump (rejected romantically).
    • Have you dumped everyone you've ever been with? You've never been the dumpee?
Synonyms: jiltee
dump one's load
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (idiomatic, vulgar or slang) To ejaculate, cum, inseminate, or defecate
    • 1997, Penthouse International, Letters to Penthouse VII: Celebrate the Rites of Passion, link Suddenly she plunged her tongue deep inside my asshole. I immediately began dumping my load into Todd's warm, tight bunghole.
    • 2003, Penthouse Magazine, Letters to Penthouse XIX, link I spread her legs and shoved my cock in her tight young pussy. I gave her a good fuck and dumped my load deep inside her.
    • 2010, John Patrick, Smooth and Sassy, page 30 On my second visit I even got to feel a locker key bouncing off my nuts as I dumped my load down the throat of a young man
Synonyms: see
dump out
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (informal, transitive) To discard, to throw away, to toss out.
  • As with many phrasal verbs, a short direct object will frequently precede the particle, as in “He dumped it out”, rather than *“He dumped out it.”
dun {{wikipedia}}
etymology 1 From Middle English dun, dunne, from Old English dunn, from Proto-Germanic *dusnaz, from Proto-Indo-European *dhūw-. Cognate with osx dun, Old High German tusin. Alternative etymology derives the Old English word from Late Brythonic (compare Old Welsh dwnn 'dark (red)'), from Proto-Celtic *dusno (compare Old Irish donn), from Proto-Indo-European *dwos (compare Old Saxon dosan 'chestnut brown'). More at dusk. pronunciation
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (uncountable) A brownish grey colour. {{color panel}}
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. Of a brownish grey colour.
    • Pierpont Summer's dun cloud comes thundering up.
    • Keble Chill and dun / Falls on the moor the brief November day.
etymology 2 unknown; perhaps a variant of din.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (countable) A collector of debts.
    • Arbuthnot to be pulled by the sleeve by some rascally dun
    • 1933, George Orwell, Down and Out in Paris and London, Ch. 18: Melancholy duns came looking for him at all hours.
    • 1970, John Glassco, Memoirs of Montparnasse, New York 2007, p. 102: ‘Frank's worried about duns,’ she said as the butler went away.
  2. An urgent request or demand of payment. He sent his debtor a dun.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive) To ask or beset a debtor for payment.
    • Jonathan Swift Hath she sent so soon to dun?
    • 1749, Henry Fielding, Tom Jones, Folio Society 1973, p. 577: Of all he had received from Lady Bellaston, not above five guineas remained and that very morning he had been dunned by a tradesman for twice that sum.
    • 1940, Raymond Chandler, Farewell, My Lovely, Penguin 2010, p. 107: Rich bitches who had to be dunned for their milk bills would pay him right now.
  2. (transitive) To harass by continually repeating e.g. a request.
etymology 3 {{rfe}} pronunciation
  • /duːn/
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A valley in the Himalayan foothills, e.g. Dehra Dun.
etymology 4 {{rfe}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (countable) A newly hatched, immature mayfly.
Synonyms: subimago, Finnish: fi, fi
etymology 5 See done.
verb: {{head}}
  1. (informal) eye dialect of done: en-past of do He dun it before and he dun it again. Now, ya dun it!
etymology 6 See don’t 〈don’t〉.
contraction: {{en-cont}}
  1. eye dialect of don't
etymology 7
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive) To cure, as codfish, by laying them, after salt, in a pile in a dark place, covered with saltgrass or a similar substance.
etymology 8 See dune.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A mound or small hill.
etymology 9 Imitative.
interjection: {{en-interj}}
  1. (humorous) Imitating suspenseful music.
    • Carrie Tucker, I Love Geeks Has he allowed the power and the repercussions of the Death Note to influence his entire life? How would you deal with that power? (Dun, dun, DUN! Insert dramatic music here.)
{{Webster 1913}}
anagrams:
  • DNU
dune coon
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang, derogatory) a racial slur for someone of Middle Eastern descent
dung {{wikipedia}} pronunciation
  • /ˈdʌŋ/
  • {{rhymes}}
etymology 1 {{rfe}} Middle English, from Old English, from Proto-Germanic *dungō.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (uncountable) Manure; animal excrement.
    • 1605, , , act III, scene iv, line 129 Poor Tom, that eats the swimming frog, the toad, the todpole, the wall-newt, and the water; that in the fury of his heart, when the foul fiend rages, eats cow-dung for sallets; swallows the old rat and the ditch-dog; drinks the green mantle of the standing pool…
    • 1611, Authorized King James Version, Malachi 2:3 Behold, I will corrupt your seed, and spread dung upon your faces, even the dung of your solemn feasts; and one shall take you away with it.
    • 1882, James Edwin Thorold Rogers, A History of Agriculture and Prices in England, volume 4, page 496 The labourer at the dung cart is paid at 3d. or 4d. a day; and on one estate, Lullington, scattering dung is paid a 5d. the hundred heaps.
  2. (countable) A type of manure, as from a particular species or type of animal.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive) To fertilize with dung. {{rfquotek}}
  2. (transitive, calico printing) To immerse or steep, as calico, in a bath of hot water containing cow dung, done to remove the superfluous mordant.
  3. (intransitive) To void excrement.
etymology 2 See ding
verb: {{head}}
  1. (obsolete) past participle of ding
etymology 3 unknown
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (colloquial) To discard (especially rubbish); to chuck out.
dunkable etymology dunk + able
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (informal) Suitable for dunk (as of food).
    • 2006, Maida Heatter, Toni Evins, Maida Heatter's Book of Great Chocolate Desserts‎ Just remember to keep the mixture thick; it should coat the dunkable items heavily.
    • 2007, Shauna James Ahern, Gluten-Free Girl They're milk-dunkable and sophisticated at the same time. I dare you to eat just one.
  2. (informal) Waterproof.
    • 1961, Jeanne Harman, The Virgins: Magic Islands‎ The row upon row of half-inch, hand-plaited straw, handsewn, is eminently dunkable, a feature not only useful to the seafaring inventors...
    • 1993, Lakeland Boating‎ Such cases let you use your dry-land SLR underwater, but cost enough that an inexpensive "dunkable" camera seems the choice except for perfectionists!
anagrams:
  • baulk end
dunkfest etymology dunk + fest
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang, rare, basketball) A game involving many dunk.
    • 2004, Timothy Harper, Doing Good: Inspirational Stories Of Everyday Americans At Home And At Work Another Ridgewood Y regular described seeing Dalton get into a trash-talking dunkfest on a tough playground in Miami.
    • 2006, Jimmy Black, Scott Fowler, Jimmy Black's Tales from the Tar Heels A WORTHY DUNKFEST: Worthy's 28 points in the game included five dunks.
    • {{quote-news}}
    • 2007, Roland Lazenby, Mindgames: Phil Jackson's Long Strange Journey The conclusion itself turned into the kind of dunkfest for bench players usually reserved for rec league blowouts.
dunno pronunciation
  • (UK) /ˈdʌnəʊ/, /dəˈnəʊ/
etymology Written form of a of or .
contraction: {{en-cont}}
  1. eye dialect of do not know; eye dialect of does not know I dunno the answers to any of those questions, and you dunno and he dunno either. "Where'd he go?" / "Dunno."
This is one of the only verb forms in English that regularly does not require a pronoun. When the pronoun is not given, it is assumed to be I; all other pronouns must be given. It is never mandatory to drop I, although it is most common to do so when dunno is the only word in the sentence.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. An utterance of the word dunno.
dunny
etymology 1 From dunnekin, via Australian convicts' flash language brought from London. pronunciation
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (Australia, New Zealand, slang) A toilet, often outside and rudimentary. {{defdate}}
    • 2008, Judith L. McNeil, No One's Child, [http//books.google.com.au/books?id=hzFQGy81S80C&pg=PA95&dq=%22dunny%22|%22dunnies%22+-intitle:%22%22+-inauthor:%22%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=UKpHT8XkPOqWmQXrnsWQDg&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=%22dunny%22|%22dunnies%22%20-intitle%3A%22%22%20-inauthor%3A%22%22&f=false page 95], There was one leaning dunny down the back and, if you stayed very quiet, on a very still day you could hear the white ants as they chewed the wood.The bottom boards were already eaten through, and I avoided using the dunny at all costs.
    • 2010, Kathleen M. McGinley, Out of the Daydream: Based on the Autobiography of Barry Mcginley Jones, [http//books.google.com.au/books?id=jrMwlyKf9FIC&pg=PA47&dq=%22dunny%22|%22dunnies%22+-intitle:%22%22+-inauthor:%22%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=zpxHT9jZN8a3iQe1_Ji9Dg&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=%22dunny%22|%22dunnies%22%20-intitle%3A%22%22%20-inauthor%3A%22%22&f=false page 47], The dunny was another place to go to get out of class. You got to go there by raising your hand in class and asking Miss if you could go to the lav.
    • 2010, Christopher Milne, The Boy Who Lived in a Dunny, in The Day Our Teacher Went Mad and Other Naughty Stories for Good Boys and Girls, [http//books.google.com.au/books?id=_nlw2XG6yzgC&pg=PT108&dq=%22dunny%22|%22dunnies%22+-intitle:%22%22+-inauthor:%22%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=XKRHT83wLYrnmAXf4IiXDg&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=%22dunny%22|%22dunnies%22%20-intitle%3A%22%22%20-inauthor%3A%22%22&f=false unnumbered page], ‘Until you wake up to yourself, you can live in the old dunny for all I care.’ ‘All right, I will,’ said Tony.
  2. (Scottish and northern English, slang, dated) An outside toilet, or the passageway leading to it; (by extension) a passageway or cellar.
etymology 2
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (UK, dialect) Deaf; stupid.
    • {{rfdate}} Sir Walter Scott My old dame Joan is something dunny, and will scarce know how to manage.
dunny can Alternative forms: dunnycan
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (AU, colloquial) A toilet.
    • 1985, Peter Carey, llywhacker, Faber and Faber 2003, p. 312: Empty your bladder into the stinking mysteries of the dunnycan.
    • 2004, Alan Greenhalgh, Gathers No Moss: Looking after chooks and feeding dogs were bad enough, but having to empty the dunny can? That was the final straw!
dunny man Alternative forms: dunnyman
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (AU, colloquial, now, chiefly, historical) Someone whose job it is to empty the cesspit from a basic toilet which is not attached to a plumbing system.
    • 1980, Clive James, Unreliable Memoirs: Luckily the dunny man was a model of probity. Never putting a foot wrong, he carried out his Sisyphean task in loyal silence.
    • 1985, Peter Carey, Illywhacker, Faber and Faber 2003, page 337: He played cards with me and listened to me talk about Leah Goldstein until the passing dunnyman announced the coming dawn.
dunzo
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (US slang) done, finished
dupe
etymology 1 From French duper, from Middle French duppe.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. To swindle, deceive, or trick.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A person who has been deceived.
Synonyms: See also
related terms:
  • dupery
etymology 2 Abbreviation of duplicate
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive) To duplicate. Can you dupe this photo for me?
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (photography) A duplicate of a photographic image.
  2. (restaurant industry) A duplicate of an order receipt printed for kitchen staff.
  3. (informal) A duplicate.
Synonyms:
related terms:
Durannie etymology Duran + ie
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang) A fan of the English rock band Duran Duran.
    • 1990, Punch, Volume 299, page 55: These followers of Duran Duran's contemporaries, Japan, regarded themselves as being the intellectual superiors of Durannies and formed the more dignified-sounding Japan Appreciation Society.
    • 2000, Spin, February 2000, page 32: It's been more than a decade since they've been considered teen idols, but Duran Duran singer Simon Le Bon and ex-bass player John Taylor were still able to inspire hysteria from a packed audience of aging Durannies during a one-off semi-reunion at Manhattan nightspot Joe's Pub in November.
    • 2009, Caitlin Davies, Friends Like Us, Simon & Schuster (2009), ISBN 9781416522553, page 42: I was a Durannie and I had you on the inside of my bedroom door, didn't I, Simon?
durka durka etymology Imitative; introduced in the 2004 American satirical comedy film Team America: World Police.
interjection: {{en-intj}}
  1. (offensive, ethnic slur) Mimicking Middle Eastern speech.
durn
adjective: {{head}}
  1. (US, informal) Euphemism for darn, in itself a euphemism for damn.
adverb: {{en-adv}}
  1. Darn; damned; extremely.
interjection: {{en-interj}}
  1. (US, informal) Euphemism for darn, in itself a euphemism for damn.
verb: {{head}}
  1. (slang) Rhotized pronunciation of doing. How ya durn?
anagrams:
  • nurd
durrie
etymology 1
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (Australia, slang) alternative form of durry
    • 1998, Phillip Gwynne, , unnumbered page, ‘Deadly,’ she said, and passed me the durrie. I took a drag. Was she watching? No, thank goodness, she was looking down at the water again. I blew the smoke straight out, without taking it into my lungs. ‘Deadly,’ I said, and passed the durrie back to Clarence.
etymology 2
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. alternative form of dhurrie
durry etymology Unknown. Possibly (putative obsolete brand of roll-your-own tobacco) + -y. From 1940s; evidence of colloquial use from early 20thC. Alternative forms: durrie
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (Australia and New Zealand, colloquial, slang) A cigarette, especially a roll-your-own. {{defdate}}
    • 2003, , Far from Maddy, page 224, “Fire-head lady, you got a smoke?” asks the younger of the two men. “You got a durry. Cigarette.” His timbre is low but void of inflexion. “Come,” he says again, brown hand scooping the air in front of him.
    • 2004, Jay Verney, Percussion, page 118, He pulled a tobacco pouch out of his pocket with a plastic bag containing what had to be a mind-altering substance. “You′re welcome to join me in a durry,” he said, rolling himself a cigarette.
    • 2007, Kevin Hallewell, Woop Woop, page 151, He thought for a moment as he deftly rolled the paper and tobacco into a durry, licked the edge and stuck it down.
Synonyms: cancer stick, fag
dust {{wikipedia}} etymology From Middle English dust, doust, from Old English dust, dūst, from the fusion of Proto-Germanic *dustą and Proto-Germanic *dunstą, both from Proto-Indo-European *dʰewes-, *dʰews-, *dʰwAn-, *dʰūw-. Cognate with Scots dust, dist, Dutch duist and dons, German Dust and Dunst, Swedish dust, Icelandic dust, Latin fūmus. Also related to Swedish dun, Icelandic dúnn. See down. pronunciation
  • /dʌst/
  • {{rhymes}}
  • {{audio}}
  • {{homophones}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (uncountable) Fine, dry particle of matter found in the air and covering the surface of objects, typically consisting of soil lifted up by the wind, pollen, hair, etc.
  2. (countable) The act of cleaning by dusting.
    • 2010, Joan Busfield, Michael Paddon, Thinking About Children: Sociology and Fertility in Post-War England (page 150) …once they start school, I mean you can do a room out one day, the next day it only needs a dust, doesn't it?
  3. (obsolete) A single particle of earth or other material.
    • Shakespeare to touch a dust of England's ground
  4. The earth, as the resting place of the dead.
    • Bible, Job vii. 21 I shall sleep in the dust.
  5. The earthy remains of bodies once alive; the remains of the human body.
    • Tennyson And you may carve a shrine about my dust.
  6. (figurative) Something worthless.
    • Shakespeare And by the merit of vile gold, dross, dust.
  7. (figurative) A low or mean condition.
    • Bible, 1 Sam. ii. 8 [God] raiseth up the poor out of the dust.
  8. (slang, dated) cash; money (in reference to gold dust).
  9. (mathematics) A totally disconnected set of point with a fractal structure.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive) To remove dust from.
    • 1918, W. B. Maxwell, 12 , [http://openlibrary.org/works/OL1097634W The Mirror and the Lamp] , “There were many wooden chairs for the bulk of his visitors, and two wicker armchairs with red cloth cushions for superior people. From the packing-cases had emerged some Indian clubs, […], and all these articles […] made a scattered and untidy decoration that Mrs. Clough assiduously dusted and greatly cherished.”
    exampleThe cleaning lady needs a stool to dust the cupboard.
  2. (intransitive) To remove dust; to clean by removing dust. exampleDusting always makes me cough.
  3. (intransitive) Of a bird, to cover itself in sand or dry, dusty earth.
  4. (transitive) To spray or cover something with fine powder or liquid. exampleThe mother dusted her baby's bum with talcum powder.
  5. (chiefly US slang) To leave; to rush off.
    • 1939, Raymond Chandler, The Big Sleep, Penguin 2011, p. 75: He added in a casual tone: ‘The girl can dust. I'd like to talk to you a little, soldier.’
  6. To reduce to a fine powder; to levigate. {{rfquotek}}
anagrams:
  • stud
duster etymology dust + er pronunciation
  • /ˈdʌstə/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. An object, now especially a cloth, used for dusting surfaces etc.
  2. Someone who dusts.
  3. A light, loose-fitting long coat.
  4. (paper-making) A revolving wire-cloth cylinder which removes the dust from rags, etc.
  5. (milling) A blowing-machine for separating the flour from the bran.
  6. (oil and gas) A dry drill hole, one that does not produce oil or gas.
  7. (military, informal) A vehicle-mounted, multi-barrelled, anti-aircraft gun.
anagrams:
  • rudest
  • rusted
dusthead etymology dust + head; see angel dust.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang) A recreational user of the drug phencyclidine.
dustpan {{wikipedia}} etymology From dust + pan. pronunciation
  • /ˈdʌstpæn/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A flat scoop with a short handle, into which dust, dirt and other material is conveyed with a brush or broom.
anagrams:
  • standup, stand up, stand-up
dustup Alternative forms: dust-up etymology dust + up
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) A scuffle or fight.
  2. (informal, by extension) An argument or dispute.
quotations:
  • 2005, Seattle Times, 21 June, The incident followed other dustups between the two parties over the conduct of the war on terrorism.
Synonyms: See also , See also
Dutch {{interwiktionary}} Alternative forms: (abbreviation): Du. etymology From Middle English Duch, from Middle Dutch dutsch, duutsc (modern Duits), northern variant of dietsc (compare modern Diets), from Proto-Germanic *þiudiskaz (compare German Deutsch, Old English þēodisc), from Proto-Germanic *þeudō, from Proto-Indo-European *tewtéh₂ 〈*tewtéh₂〉. See also Derrick, Teuton, Teutonic. Middle Dutch duutsc is the result of i-mutation (umlaut) typical of central dialects (Brabantine) while dietsc shows the merger of iu with io and weakening to [iə] typical of coastal dialects (Flemish). This led to doublet which split in meaning during the Renaissance. pronunciation
  • {{enPR}}, /dʌtʃ/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (obsolete) German.
  2. (archaic) Pertaining to the Dutch, the German, and the Goth; Germanic, Teutonic.
  3. Of or pertaining to the Netherlands, the Dutch people or the Dutch language.
  4. (obsolete outside certain fixed expressions, now, offensive) Substitute, inferior, ersatz (as seen in expressions such as Dutch courage, Dutch treat, Dutch oven{{,}} and Dutch comfort).
  5. In a shared manner; of a shared expense. (See Dutch treat; compare go Dutch.)
Dutch should not be used in diplomatic circles (i. e. to describe embassies, ambassador, consulate and consul of the Netherlands). The correct term is Netherlands.
proper noun: {{wikipedia}} {{en-proper noun}}
  1. The main language of the Netherlands and Flanders (i.e., the northern half of Belgium).
  2. (obsolete) German; the main language of the Holy Roman Empire (Germany, Austria, Alsace, Luxembourg).
  3. (collective) The people of the Netherlands. the Dutch will vote on the matter next month
related terms: {{rel-top}}
  • double Dutch
  • Dutch act
  • Dutch angle
  • Dutch auction
  • Dutch-bottomed
  • Dutch cap
  • Dutch cheese
  • Dutch cleanser
  • Dutch clover
  • Dutch comfort
  • Dutch concert
  • Dutch corner
  • Dutch courage
  • Dutch crossing
  • Dutch door
{{rel-mid}}
  • Dutchie, Dutchy
  • Dutch elm disease
  • Dutch gold
  • Dutch hand
  • Dutch hoe
  • Dutchland
  • Dutch Low Saxon
  • Dutch metal
  • Dutch oven
  • Dutch pink
  • Dutch reckoning
  • Dutch tilt
  • Dutch treat
  • Dutch uncle
  • go Dutch
  • in Dutch
  • Pennsylvania Dutch
  • Deutsch
  • Teuton
{{rel-bottom}}
dutch etymology Short for duchess
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang) wife
Dutch act
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (idiomatic, slang) Suicide. Was she depressed enough to do the Dutch act?
Dutch concert
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang) A so-called concert in which all the singer sing different songs at the same time.
{{Webster 1913}}
Dutcher
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (humorous) Dutchman
  2. (humorous) Dutchwoman
Synonyms: Dutchie
dutchie {{wikipedia}} etymology Dutch + ie
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang, smoking) A cannabis blunt rolled inside a .
  2. (slang, smoking) A cannabis joint.
  3. (Canada) A fast food pastry, being a square doughnut with raisin and glaze.
Dutchland etymology From Middle English Duchelond, equivalent to Dutch + land. Cognate with Western Frisian Dútslân, Dutch Duitsland, German Deutschland, Swedish Tyskland, Icelandic Þýskaland.
proper noun: {{en-proper noun}}
  1. (dated) The region of Continental Europe populated by speakers of Low, Middle and High West Germanic languages, roughly corresponding to the Netherlands, Flanders, Germany, Austria, and parts of Switzerland.
    • 1902, John Fiske, The Dutch and Quaker colonies in America: The dwellers in those mountain regions, along with the greater part of the lowland population, we call by a Latin name "Germans," as if we had first learned about them by reading Cæsar's commentaries. One can see how the popular name "Dutchland" would naturally remain associated especially with that bit of shore with which our forefathers had most to do.
  2. (obsolete) Germany.
    • 1688, George Etherege, in a letter (written from ) to Middleton, printed in 1982 in A Biographical Dictionary of Actors, Actresses, … and Other Stage Personnel in London, volume 8, page 170: … a comedian no less handsome and no less kind in Dutchland than Mrs. Johnson was in England …
    • 1838, , The Anatomy of Melancholy, sixteenth edition (printed from the authorized copy of 1651), Democritus Junior to the Reader, page 51: I observe, in Turinge in Dutchland, …
    • 1886, in The Education Outlook: Before a few weeks ago I always held England for the greateste land of the whole world after Dutchland, and the Englanders for the best-lighted folk.
  3. (dated, rare, now often humorous) Holland; The Netherlands (the region inhabited by the Dutch).
    • 1822-26, Ebenezer Sibly, An Illustration of the Celestial Science of Astrology, part 3, page 995: Isle of Ameyland, Dutchland German ocean - 7 30 Amsterdam, ditto, - Ditto - 3 00
    • 1905, in the Publications of the Huguenot Society of London: Marie Stope, the wiff of the said Arnold, borne in Dutchland, .... age of 1 yeares.
    • 1913, Hugh Johnston, Travel films: being pen pictures of Europe: The finest gallery of pictures in Dutchland is the Mesdag Museum, containing the art collections of the painter H. W. Mesdag.
Dutchman etymology Dutch + man pronunciation
  • /ˈdʌtʃmən/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A Dutch man; a man from the Netherlands.
  2. A person of Dutch descent.
  3. (archaic or dated) A German.
  4. (South Africa, derogatory, offensive, ethnic slur) A white Afrikaner.
    • 1990, Rian Malan, My Traitor's Heart: Blood and Bad Dreams (page 54) …the tyranny of the rockspiders, crunchies, hairybacks, ropes, and bloody Dutchmen. Those were the names by which we referred to Afrikaners.
proper noun: {{en-proper noun}}
  1. (US) A nickname for President Franklin D. Roosevelt. 2003 Bradley, James Flyboys. New York: Little, Brown and Company. Ch 8:
    • President Roosevelt called a press conference in the Oval Office. [...] when asked where the Billys had originated, the Dutchman smiled broadly [...].
Dutch pink
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A yellow lake pigment.
  2. (slang) Blood.
Dutch reckoning
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (idiomatic, uncommon, 1811, possibly offensive) A (falsified) bill that is not itemised, and that is unjustifiably high.
    • 1712, Roger Coke, A Detection Of The Court and State Of England During The Four Last Reigns, page 22: As if all Light of Reasoning were so shut up in Clavius his Brain, that because he does not see, the rest of Mankind must be blind; and what is that way of Reasoning that he betakes himself to, but by huddling the Principles of Geometry into Confusion, without order of method of Reasoning, to make a Conclusion, like a Dutch Reckoning of Allem-al?
    • 1828, Death on Board-Wages, published in Tales of an Antiquary (volume 2 of 3) by Henry Colburn, New Burlington Street, London: "You knows we never took Mike's dud till you couldn't pay his charges any longer; and since we comes to that, there's two weeks of three shillings and sixpence due for your lodging in the Star-Chamber, for yourself and Master Lionel Falconer, which I supposes you means to pay with a Dutch reckoning: you sees I can speak some names right enough,—d'ye take me,—hey?" and with an ill-natured leer he left the hall.
    • 2009, Georgette Heyer, Frederica, page 75: 'That's better!' he said, still smiling, but very much more pleasantly. 'Rig Jane out in the first style of elegance, and send me a Dutch reckoning: I don't want to know the particulars.'
  2. (nautical, possibly offensive) a false or incorrect reckoning of position.
  3. Used other than as an idiom: as reckoned by the Dutch: five o'clock by the Dutch reckoning would be five o'clock in the Dutch rather than, e.g., a Canadian time zone; for example, 1 March 1625 in the Dutch reckoning was, in the English reckoning of the time, 19 February 1624(?).
dutch rub
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang) An act of roughly rubbing one's knuckle across the top of another person's head with the intent of causing pain, often while pinning the other person's head with one's free arm.
Synonyms: noogie
dwaal etymology From Afrikaans
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (South Africa, informal) A dreamy, dazed, absent-minded, or befuddled state Sitting here in a dwaal.
related terms:
  • dwale
  • dwual
dwarf {{wikipedia}} etymology From Middle English dwerf, dwergh, dwerw, dwerȝ, from Old English dweorh, dweorg, from Proto-Germanic *dwergaz, cognate with Old High German twerc (German Zwerg), Old Norse dvergr (Swedish dvärg), Old Frisian dwirg, Middle Low German dwerch, dwarch, twerg (Low German Dwarg, Dwarch), Middle Dutch dwerch, dworch (Dutch dwerg). The Germanic word is perhaps from a Proto-Indo-European *dʰwer-; compare Sanskrit ध्वरति 〈dhvarati〉, ध्वरस् 〈dhvaras〉. The Modern English noun has undergone complex phonetic changes. The form dwarf is the regular continuation of dweorg, but the plural dweorgas would have given rise to dwarrows and the oblique stem dweorge- would have led to dwery. These forms are sometimes found as the nominative singular in Middle English texts and in English dialects. A parallel case is that of Old English burg giving burgh, borough, burrow, bury. pronunciation
  • {{enPR}}, /dwɔː(ɹ)f/, /dɔɹf/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (mythology) Any member of a race of beings from (especially Scandinavian and other Germanic) folklore, usually depicted as having some sort of supernatural powers and being skilled in crafting and metalworking, often depicted as short, and sometimes depicted as clashing with elves.
  2. (now, often offensive) A person of short stature, often one whose limb are disproportionate small in relation to the body as compared with normal adults, usually as the result of a genetic condition.
  3. An animal, plant or other thing much smaller than the usual of its sort. dwarf tree; dwarf honeysuckle
  4. (star) A star of relatively small size.
At first, dwarfs was the more common plural in English. After used dwarves, it began to rise in popularity, and is now about as common as dwarfs. Synonyms: (person) midget, pygmy (imprecise)
antonyms:
  • giant
  • ettin
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (especially in botany) Miniature. The specimen is a very dwarf form of the plant. It is possible to grow the plants as dwarf as one desires.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive) To render (much) smaller, turn into a dwarf (version).
  2. (transitive) To make appear (much) smaller, puny, tiny.
    • {{quote-magazine}}
    exampleThe newly-built skyscraper dwarfs all older buildings in the downtown skyline.
  3. (transitive) To make appear insignificant. exampleBach dwarfs all other composers.
  4. (intransitive) To become (much) smaller.
  5. To hinder from growing to the natural size; to make or keep small; to stunt. {{rfquotek}}
    • J. C. Shairp Even the most common moral ideas and affections … would be stunted and dwarfed, if cut off from a spiritual background.
Synonyms: (make much smaller) miniaturize, shrink, (become much smaller) shrink

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