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[dawb] /dɔb/
verb (used with object)
to cover or coat with soft, adhesive matter, as plaster or mud:
to daub a canvas with paint; to daub stone walls with mud.
to spread (plaster, mud, etc.) on or over something:
to daub plaster on a brick wall.
to smear, soil, or defile.
to apply, as paint or colors, unskillfully.
verb (used without object)
to daub something.
to paint unskillfully.
material, especially of an inferior kind, for daubing walls.
something daubed on.
an act of daubing.
a crude, inartistic painting.
Origin of daub
1275-1325; (v.) Middle English dauben < Anglo-French, Old French dauber to whiten, paint < Latin dealbāre, equivalent to de-, prevocalic variant of dē- de- + albāre to whiten, derivative of albus white; (noun) late Middle English, derivative of the v.
Related forms
dauber, noun
daubingly, adverb
dauby, adjective
undaubed, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for dauber
Historical Examples
  • And now you can go to—one dauber less is a blessing to humanity!

  • dauber, it will be seen, is more than an exciting story of a storm.

    Old and New Masters Robert Lynd
  • Enguehard is an idle dog, who does no good, while Rivol is too well off ever to be anything more than an amateur and a dauber.

    Popular Tales

    Madame Guizot
  • When Cyrus Glover was informed that his daughter intended to marry a dauber in paints, he started for Paris on ten hours' notice.

    Murder in Any Degree Owen Johnson
  • Secker means sackmaker, Parmenter a parchmenter, Pargater a dauber, Straker a maker of tires.

    Why we should read S. P. B. Mais
  • A dancing-girl, who had not much to do, deigned to grant the little Flemish dauber, the favor of sitting for her portrait.

  • Not even the death of the dauber in a wretched accident defeats our sense of divine and ultimate victory.

    Old and New Masters Robert Lynd
  • Nothing more vigorous and thrilling than the description of the storm at sea in dauber has appeared in current literature.

  • Then take the dauber which has been filled with red color, and pat the stone, which should be dry by that time.

    The Invention of Lithography Alois Senefelder
  • I saw that I could attain my purpose better with a dauber of stiffer material.

    The Invention of Lithography Alois Senefelder
British Dictionary definitions for dauber


(transitive) to smear or spread (paint, mud, etc), esp carelessly
(transitive) to cover or coat (with paint, plaster, etc) carelessly
to paint (a picture) clumsily or badly
an unskilful or crude painting
something daubed on, esp as a wall covering See also wattle and daub
a smear (of paint, mud, etc)
the act of daubing
Derived Forms
dauber, noun
dauby, adjective
Word Origin
C14: from Old French dauber to paint, whitewash, from Latin dealbāre, from albāre to whiten, from albus white
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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Word Origin and History for dauber



late 14c. (Dauber as a surname is recorded from mid-13c.), from Old French dauber "to whitewash, plaster" (13c.), perhaps from Latin dealbare, from de- "thoroughly" + albare "to whiten," from albus "white" (see alb). Painting sense is from 1620s. Related: Daubed; daubing. As a noun, from mid-15c.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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