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[oh-ver-doo] /ˌoʊ vərˈdu/
verb (used with object), overdid, overdone, overdoing.
to do to excess; overindulge in:
to overdo dieting.
to carry to excess or beyond the proper limit:
He puts on so much charm that he overdoes it.
to overact (a part); exaggerate.
to overtax the strength of; fatigue; exhaust.
to cook too much or too long; overcook:
Don't overdo the hamburgers.
verb (used without object), overdid, overdone, overdoing.
to do too much; go to an extreme:
Exercise is good but you mustn't overdo.
Origin of overdo
before 1000; Middle English overdon, Old English oferdōn. See over-, do1
Related forms
overdoer, noun
Can be confused
overdo, overdue. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for overdid
Historical Examples
  • In attempting to throw herself flat, she overdid the matter.

  • Sometimes we overdid it, raising the dull-red to brightness now and then.

    The Big Otter R.M. Ballantyne
  • My books were and always have been a part of me, and as was to be expected, I overdid it.

    Each Man Kills Victoria Glad
  • Gradually, from now, she gave up all her time to reading and writing, and she overdid it.

    The Beth Book Sarah Grand
  • I engaged her as a confidential secretary, and she overdid it.

    The Man Upstairs P. G. Wodehouse
  • But I am afraid I overdid the part: it was unnatural for me.

  • He speculated largely in building villas, overdid the market, and got crippled.

  • In fact, it was he who managed to put me off my ideas; he overdid them so disgracefully.

    Twos and Threes G. B. Stern
  • I am inclined to think that he overdid it, missing the effect which a milder tone might have attained.

    The Small House at Allington Anthony Trollope
  • In describing the cheapness of Venetian life yesterday, I overdid it a bit.

    Letters of Anton Chekhov Anton Chekhov
British Dictionary definitions for overdid


verb (transitive) -does, -doing, -did, -done
to take or carry too far; do to excess
to exaggerate, overelaborate, or overplay
to cook or bake too long
overdo it, overdo things, to overtax one's strength, capacity, etc
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 overdid



Old English oferdon "to do too much," from ofer (see over) + don (see do (v.)). Common Germanic (cf. Old High German ubartuan). Meaning "to overtax, exhaust" (especially in phrase to overdo it) is attested from 1817. Of food, "to cook too long," first recorded 1680s (in past participle adjective overdone).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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