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[dawr-mat, dohr-] /ˈdɔrˌmæt, ˈdoʊr-/
a mat, usually placed before a door or other entrance, for people arriving to wipe their shoes on before entering.
a person who is the habitual object of abuse or humiliation by another.
Origin of doormat
First recorded in 1655-65; door + mat1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for doormat
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Mr. Darco darted and shook her as if she had been a doormat.

    Despair's Last Journey David Christie Murray
  • "If you're looking for a doormat to wipe your feet on, I'll send for Tony," he jeered.

    Oh, You Tex! William Macleod Raine
  • Any man that wears clothes like a doormat will let you make a doormat of him!

    Skinner's Dress Suit

    Henry Irving Dodge
  • If you want to know, she's got a right to make a doormat of me.

    A Texas Ranger William MacLeod Raine
  • A sweet child with ted pigtails was playing with shells on the doormat.

British Dictionary definitions for doormat


a mat, placed at the entrance to a building, for wiping dirt from shoes
(informal) a person who offers little resistance to ill-treatment by others
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 doormat

1660s, from door + mat. Figurative use from 1861.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for doormat



: Cornell University's doormat status on the gridiron


A person who is regularly and predictably exploited by others; constant victim: the soulful Earth Mother doormat of the kind played by Shirley MacLaine in the fifties/ the wife a rape victim, slave, doormat

Related Terms

treat someone like a doormat

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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