dolt

dolt
   A dolt is a dull person, a blockhead. The word has been in use since at least the sixteenth century, and was thus available to Shakespeare. He has Pandarus, in Troilus and Cressida, refer to the ‘asses, fools, dolts’, meaning the ordinary soldiers who are passing by who cannot compare with Troilus.
   More tellingly, in Othello, Emilia learns that Othello has killed Desdemona and tells him: ‘O gull! O dolt! As ignorant as dirt! Thou hast done a deed.’ A modern example of ‘dolt’, used as a disguised endearment, occurs in The Word Child, by Iris Murdoch: ‘“I want your ‘flu. I want you. I love you viruses and all.” She kissed me on the lips. “You dolt, Tomkins.”’ In Vera Caspary’s novel Laura a man addresses a shopkeeper he knows well: ‘Claudius, you dolt, why in the sacred name of Josiah Wedgwood have you been keeping this [a vase] from me?’ Leslie Thomas, in The Magic Army, has ‘Clear off, you dozy dolts’ addressed to a herd of cows blocking the road. Later in the novel a woman says: ‘Come on, you old dolt’ to her chauffeur.

A dictionary of epithets and terms of address . . 2015.

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  • dolt — dolt; dolt·ish; dolt·ish·ly; dolt·ish·ness; …   English syllables

  • dolt — (d[=o]lt; 110), n. [OE. dulte, prop. p. p. of dullen to dull. See {Dull}.] A heavy, stupid fellow; a blockhead; a numskull; an ignoramus; a dunce; a dullard. [1913 Webster] This Puck seems but a dreaming dolt. Drayton. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • dolt — dolt, v. i. To behave foolishly. [Obs.] [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • dolt — [dōlt] n. [prob. < ME dolte, pp. of dullen: see DULL, vt. vi.] a stupid, slow witted person; blockhead doltish adj. doltishly adv. doltishness n …   English World dictionary

  • dolt — [dəult US doult] n old fashioned [Date: 1500 1600; Origin: Perhaps from dold stupid (1400 1500)] a silly or stupid person >doltish adj …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • dolt — [ doult ] noun count a stupid person …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • dolt — (n.) 1540s, perhaps a variant of dold dull, foolish, influenced by dulte, dolte, pp. forms of M.E. dullen to dull, make or become dazed or stupid (see DULL (Cf. dull)). Related: Doltish; doltishly; doltishness …   Etymology dictionary

  • dolt — [n] stupid person airhead*, blockhead*, boob*, chump*, dimwit*, dodo*, dope, dork*, dumbbell*, dumdum*, dunce, fool, goon*, idiot, ignoramus, lamebrain*, lunkhead*, meathead*, nitwit*, sap*, simpleton, stupid, yo yo*; concepts 412,423 Ant. brain …   New thesaurus

  • dolt — ► NOUN ▪ a stupid person. DERIVATIVES doltish adjective. ORIGIN perhaps a variant of dulled, from DULL(Cf. ↑dulness) …   English terms dictionary

  • dolt — [[t]doʊlt[/t]] n. a blockhead; dunce • Etymology: 1535–45; var. of obs. dold stupid dolt′ish, adj. dolt′ish•ly, adv. dolt′ish•ness, n …   From formal English to slang

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