Slang. an act or instance of giving a narcotic, usually a steroid, to an athlete to unfairly boost performance in a competition.
Electronics. a method of adding a dopant to a pure semiconductor to change its electrical properties.

Origin of doping

First recorded in 1950–55; dope + -ing1




any thick liquid or pasty preparation, as a lubricant, used in preparing a surface.
an absorbent material used to absorb and hold a liquid, as in the manufacture of dynamite.
  1. any of various varnishlike products for coating a fabric, as of airplane wings, in order to make it waterproof, stronger, etc.
  2. a similar product used to coat the fabric of a balloon to reduce gas leakage.
  1. any narcotic or narcoticlike drug taken to induce euphoria or satisfy addiction.
  2. any illicit drug.
Slang. a narcotic, usually a steroid, given to an athlete to unfairly boost performance in a competition.
Slang. a narcotic preparation given surreptitiously to a horse to improve or retard its performance in a race.
Slang. information, data, or news: What's the latest dope on the strike?
Informal. a stupid or unresponsive person.
Southern U.S. (chiefly South Atlantic States ). soda pop, especially cola-flavored.
North Central U.S. (chiefly Ohio ). syrup used as a topping for ice cream.

verb (used with object), doped, dop·ing.

Slang. to affect with dope or drugs.
Slang. to give a narcotic to (an athlete) to unfairly boost performance in a competition.
to apply or treat with dope.
Electronics. to add or treat (a pure semiconductor) with a dopant.

verb (used without object), doped, dop·ing.

Slang. to take drugs.

Verb Phrases

dope out, Slang.
  1. to figure out; calculate; devise: to dope out a plan.
  2. to deduce or infer from available information: to dope out a solution to a problem.

Origin of dope

1840–50; 1885–90 for def 4; 1900–05 for def 7; < Dutch doop (dial.) sauce, derivative of dopen to dip1
Related formsun·doped, adjective

Regional variation note

9. See soda pop. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for doping

Contemporary Examples of doping

Historical Examples of doping

  • "The less you say about my doping, the better," snarled the other man.

    The Man Who Knew

    Edgar Wallace

  • Porgee doping is a big thing all over the Hub at the moment.


    James H Schmitz

  • What made me even madder was that Willie was doping my horse.

    Ticktock and Jim

    Keith Robertson

  • Tell me if this man has been doping himself into unconsciousness.

    Boy Scouts in the Northwest

    G. Harvey Ralphson

  • Mr. Ellsworth was right when he said that Tom had a way of doping things out for himself.

    Tom Slade with the Colors

    Percy K. Fitzhugh

British Dictionary definitions for doping



any of a number of preparations made by dissolving cellulose derivatives in a volatile solvent, applied to fabric in order to improve strength, tautness, etc
an additive used to improve the properties of something, such as an antiknock compound added to petrol
a thick liquid, such as a lubricant, applied to a surface
a combustible absorbent material, such as sawdust or wood pulp, used to hold the nitroglycerine in dynamite
  1. any illegal drug, usually cannabis
  2. (as modifier)a dope fiend
a drug administered to a racehorse or greyhound to affect its performance
informal a person considered to be stupid or slow-witted
informal news or facts, esp confidential information
US and Canadian informal a photographic developing solution

verb (tr)

electronics to add impurities to (a semiconductor) in order to produce or modify its properties
to apply or add a dopant to
to administer a drug to (oneself or another)
(intr) to take dope


slang, mainly US excellent

Word Origin for dope

C19: from Dutch doop sauce, from doopen to dip
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 doping



1807, American English, "sauce, gravy, thick liquid," from Dutch doop "thick dipping sauce," from doopen "to dip" (cf. dip (v.)). Extension to "drug" is 1889, from practice of smoking semi-liquid opium preparation. Meaning "foolish, stupid person" is older (1851) and may have a sense of "thick-headed." Sense of "inside information" (1901) may come from knowing before the race which horse had been drugged to influence performance. Dope-fiend is attested from 1896.



1889, from dope (n.). Related: Doped; doping.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

doping in Medicine




A narcotic, especially an addictive narcotic.
An illicit drug, especially marijuana.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.