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[dab-ster] /ˈdæb stər/
Slang. an expert.
Informal. a person who works in a superficial or clumsy manner; dabbler.
Origin of dabster
First recorded in 1700-10; dab3 + -ster Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for dabster
Historical Examples
  • But my grief, my grief, when all is said and done, ain't she a dabster!

  • dabster was seen on Tuesday evening, going convoy to a milliner.

    The Humors of Falconbridge Jonathan F. Kelley
  • Maybe Joyce can tempt you with a mixture she's a dabster at.

    Joyce of the North Woods Harriet T. Comstock
  • I'm something of a dabster at law myself, and I'll see that Kitsong don't railroad you into jail.

    They of the High Trails

    Hamlin Garland
  • An' there was Doctor dabster, that could pit a bottle or twa under his belt, an' was neither up nor down.

    Scotch Wit and Humor

    W. H. (Walter Henry) Howe
  • He became a dabster at tucking paper napkins into his neat little waistcoat without tearing them.

    The Innocents Sinclair Lewis
  • Minnie Bellows is the best one in school with her needle and is a dabster at patching.

    Village Life in America 1852-1872 Caroline Cowles Richards
  • dabster wore a silk hat, and—well, Daisy was a woman, and that hat had no chance to get back in its box until Joe had seen it.

  • "Mr. dabster's going to take me on top of the building to observe the view," said Daisy, after she had introduced her admirers.

  • dabster led her to the parapet so she could look down at the black dots moving in the street below.

British Dictionary definitions for dabster


(Brit) a dialect word for dab hand
(US, informal) an incompetent or amateurish worker; bungler
Word Origin
C18: from dab1 + -ster
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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