noun, plural dit·ties.

a poem intended to be sung.
a short, simple song.

verb (used without object), dit·tied, dit·ty·ing.

Obsolete. to sing.

verb (used with object), dit·tied, dit·ty·ing.

Obsolete. to set to or celebrate in music.

Nearby words

  1. ditto mark,
  2. dittograph,
  3. dittographic,
  4. dittography,
  5. dittrich's plug,
  6. ditty bag,
  7. ditty box,
  8. ditz,
  9. ditzy,
  10. diu

Origin of ditty

1250–1300; Middle English dite < Anglo-French, Old French dit(i)e poem, noun use of past participle of ditier to compose < Latin dictāre; see dictate

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for ditty

British Dictionary definitions for ditty


noun plural -ties

a short simple song or poem

Word Origin for ditty

C13: from Old French ditie poem, from ditier to compose, from Latin dictāre dictate

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 ditty



"short song," c.1300, from Old French ditie "composition, poem, treatise," from Latin dictatum "thing dictated," neuter past participle of dictare "dictate" (see dictate (v.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper