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rag doll

a stuffed doll, especially of cloth.
Origin of rag doll
First recorded in 1850-55 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for rag-doll
Historical Examples
  • On the tenth of that month the Child of the Millionaire lost her rag-doll.

  • Gay clamored to go, but was pacified by the gift of a rag-doll that Samantha had made for her the evening before.

    Timothy's Quest Kate Douglas Wiggin
  • There she heard him giving vent to his emotions in subdued whining and growling and in much worrying and tearing of the rag-doll.

    The Fate of Felix Brand Florence Finch Kelly
  • Well,” said her mother, “you could at least make the girl a rag-doll like those you made for the orphans last winter.

    Kristy's Rainy Day Picnic Olive Thorne Miller
  • Out of her traveling-bag she took sewing implements, and in a short time Ethel was busily engaged in fashioning a rag-doll.

    Kristy's Rainy Day Picnic Olive Thorne Miller
  • Then, as men, they advised that the rag-doll be found as soon as possible and restored to its mourning parent.

  • To earn it one must return the rag-doll lost, strayed, or stolen from the Millionaire's mansion.

  • "Flip," a Scotch terrier, next to the rag-doll in the Child's heart, frisked through the halls.

Word Origin and History for rag-doll

child's plaything, 1776 (from 1757 as "a dressed-up woman"), from rag (n.1) + doll (n.). Rag-baby attested from 1798. Shakespeare has babe of clowts (i.e. "clouts"), 1590s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Idioms and Phrases with rag-doll

rag doll

A limp, ineffectual person, as in You won't get a decision from her; she's a rag doll when it comes to making up her mind. This expression transfers the limpness of a soft doll made from scraps of cloth to human behavior. [ Mid-1800s ]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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