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[dof, dawf] /dɒf, dɔf/
verb (used with object)
to remove or take off, as clothing.
to remove or tip (the hat), as in greeting.
to throw off; get rid of:
Doff your stupid ideas and join our side!
  1. to strip (carded fiber) from a carding machine.
  2. to remove (full bobbins, material, etc.) from a textile machine.
  1. the act of removing bobbins, material, etc., and stripping fibers from a textile machine.
  2. the material so doffed.
Origin of doff
1300-50; Middle English, contraction of do off; cf. don1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for doff
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • But his was not the nature of Epaminondas, to doff his natural supereminence and sweep the streets.

    The Brothers' War John Calvin Reed
  • Without rising, Zuchin asked me to have some vodka and to doff my tunic.

    Youth Leo Tolstoy
  • How reverently do they help her doff her little cloak of silk and lace!

    Prose Fancies (Second Series) Richard Le Gallienne
  • The soul must doff her close-clinging habits of prejudiced thought.

    Java, Facts and Fancies Augusta de Wit
  • Yes, and, when I hear the name of this enthusiast, I doff my hat.

    Cyrano de Bergerac Edmond Rostand
  • The deputy, who until now had forgotten or neglected to doff his hat, did so.

    Ahead of the Show Fred Thorpe
  • That's reet; naa then, doff that coite, and hev a soup o' tay.

    Lancashire Idylls (1898) Marshall Mather
British Dictionary definitions for doff


verb (transitive)
to take off or lift (one's hat) in salutation
to remove (clothing)
Derived Forms
doffer, noun
Word Origin
Old English dōn of; see do1, off; compare don1
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 doff

mid-14c., contraction of do off, preserving the original sense of do as "put." At the time of Johnson's Dictionary [1755] the word was "obsolete, and rarely used except by rustics," but it was saved from extinction (along with don) by Sir Walter Scott. Related: Doffed; doffing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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