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See more synonyms for dote on Thesaurus.com
verb (used without object), dot·ed, dot·ing. Also doat.
  1. to bestow or express excessive love or fondness habitually (usually followed by on or upon): They dote on their youngest daughter.
  2. to show a decline of mental faculties, especially associated with old age.
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  1. decay of wood.
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Origin of dote

1175–1225; Middle English doten to behave foolishly, become feeble-minded; cognate with Middle Dutch doten.
Related formsdot·er, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for dote

Historical Examples

  • Well, what will women not swear to, to save those they dote upon!'

    The Pirate and The Three Cutters

    Frederick Marryat

  • "I dote on 'em," comes back the Dowager, and "my daughter" owned up that she "adored" 'em.

    Cape Cod Stories

    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • Nobody knows him like me; and if there was ever one made for him to dote on, it's your own self.

  • Besides, by partial fondness shown, Like you, we dote upon our own.

    Welsh Folk-Lore

    Elias Owen

  • "Yet it would be classical to dote upon a mermaid," Caius murmured.

    The Mermaid

    Lily Dougall

British Dictionary definitions for dote


now rarely doat

verb (intr)
  1. (foll by on or upon) to love to an excessive or foolish degree
  2. to be foolish or weak-minded, esp as a result of old age
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Derived Formsdoter or now rarely doater, noun

Word Origin

C13: related to Middle Dutch doten to be silly, Norwegian dudra to shake
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 dote


c.1200, "to be feeble-minded from age," from Middle Low German doten "be foolish," of unknown origin. Meaning "to be infatuated" is from late 15c. Related: Doted; dotes; doting.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper