/ (dɔɪ) /
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Northern English dialect a beloved person: used esp as an endearment
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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


What does doy mean?

Doy is a term of endearment for a beloved person used in a Northern English dialect, especially near the city of Leeds in the English county of Yorkshire.

Doy is only used in Northern England, so you will see it alongside other examples of the dialect, as in from this poem by Yorkshire poet John Hartley:

“Whear is thi Daddy, doy? Whear is thi mam?

What are ta cryin for, poor little lamb?”

Doy is used similarly to words like darling or love, used in place of a person’s name. Using an endearment  tells a person you care deeply about them.

Where does doy come from?

The first records of the term doy come from around 1862. The origin of doy is unknown but it is thought to be an alteration of joy.

Today, the word doy is not commonly used even in and around Leeds. It is most likely to be used by an older person from the Yorkshire county to refer to a younger person or a young child.

Did you know … ?

What are some synonyms for doy?

What are some words that often get used in discussing doy?

Try using doy!

Which of the following words is a synonym of doy?

A. boy
B. friend
C. darling
D. elder

How to use doy in a sentence

  • Caballerito, doy a usted las gracias por haberme advertido los 6666 ruines propsitos de esos palurdos ms malos que Caco.

    Doa Perfecta|Benito Prez Galds
  • The envelope contained the report of Messrs. Doy and Doy on the drains of the noble mansion.

    Mr. Prohack|E. Arnold Bennett
  • "I shall bring an action against Doy and Doy," Charlie continued.

    Mr. Prohack|E. Arnold Bennett