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verb (used with object), dubbed, dub·bing.
  1. to invest with any name, character, dignity, or title; style; name; call: He was dubbed a hero.
  2. to strike lightly with a sword in the ceremony of conferring knighthood; make, or designate as, a knight: The king dubbed him a knight.
  3. to strike, cut, rub, or make smooth, as leather or timber.
  1. dub bright, Shipbuilding. to shave off the outer surface of the planking of (a ship).

Origin of dub1

1175–1225; Middle English dubben, late Old English *dubbian (in phrase dubbade tō ridere ‘dubbed to knight(hood)’), < Anglo-French dubber, dobber, douber, aphetic form of ad(o)uber, equivalent to a- a-5 + -do(u)ber < Old Low Franconian *dubban ‘to strike, beat’, cognate with Low German dubben, dub3; cf. daube
Related formsdub·ber, noun


verb (used with object), dubbed, dub·bing.
  1. to furnish (a film or tape) with a new sound track, as one recorded in the language of the country of import.
  2. to add (music, speech, etc.) to a film or tape recording (often followed by in).
  3. to copy (a tape or disc recording).
verb (used without object), dubbed, dub·bing.
  1. to copy program material from one tape recording onto another.
  1. the new sounds added to a film or tape.
  2. a style of popular music based on reggae and produced by remixing previously recorded music to which audio samples and sound effects are added.
Verb Phrases
  1. dub out, to omit or erase (unwanted sound) on a tape or sound track: to dub out background noise.

Origin of dub4

First recorded in 1925–30; short for double
Related formsdub·ber, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for dubber

Historical Examples

  • The "dubber" was made of the stock of an elk's horn, with a piece of iron or steel inserted in the end, forming a sharp knife.

    The Old Santa Fe Trail

    Henry Inman

British Dictionary definitions for dubber


verb dubs, dubbing or dubbed
  1. (tr) to invest (a person) with knighthood by the ritual of tapping on the shoulder with a sword
  2. (tr) to invest with a title, name, or nickname
  3. (tr) to dress (leather) by rubbing
  4. angling to dress (a fly)
  1. the sound of a drum

Word Origin

Old English dubbian; related to Old Norse dubba to dub a knight, Old High German tubili plug, peg


verb dubs, dubbing or dubbed films television
  1. to alter the soundtrack of (an old recording, film, etc)
  2. (tr) to substitute for the soundtrack of (a film) a new soundtrack, esp in a different language
  3. (tr) to provide (a film or tape) with a soundtrack
  4. (tr) to alter (a taped soundtrack) by removing some parts and exaggerating others
  1. films the new sounds added
    1. musica style of record production associated with reggae, involving the removal or exaggeration of instrumental parts, extensive use of echo, etc
    2. (as modifier)a dub mix

Word Origin

C20: shortened from double


verb dubs, dubbing or dubbed
  1. Australian and NZ informal short for double-bank


  1. a clumsy or awkward person or player
verb dubs, dubbing or dubbed
  1. to bungle (a shot), as in golf

Word Origin

C19: of uncertain origin


  1. Scot and Northern English dialect a pool of water; puddle

Word Origin

C16: Scottish dialect dubbe; related to Middle Low German dobbe


verb dubs, dubbing or dubbed
  1. (intr; foll by in, up, or out) slang to contribute to the cost of (something); pay

Word Origin

C19: of obscure origin
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

Word Origin and History for dubber



"give a name to," originally "make a knight," from late Old English dubbian "knight by striking with a sword" (11c.), a late word, perhaps borrowed from Old French aduber "equip with arms, adorn" (11c.) of uncertain origin, but there are phonetic difficulties. Meaning "provided with a name" is from 1590s. Related: Dubbed; dubbing.



"add or alter sound on film," 1929, shortening of double; so called because it involves re-recording voices onto a soundtrack. The type of re-mixed reggae music was so called from 1974, probably for the same reason. Related: Dubbed; dubbing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper