dote [doht] ExamplesWord Origin See more synonyms for dote on 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.


  1. decay of wood.

Origin of dote 1175–1225; Middle English doten to behave foolishly, become feeble-minded; cognate with Middle Dutch doten. Related formsdot·er, noun Related Words for dote fawn, cherish, praise, nurture, flatter, adulate, brown-nose, blandish, cajole Examples from the Web for dote Historical Examples of dote

  • 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.

    The Martins Of Cro’ Martin, Vol. I (of II)

    Charles James Lever

  • 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 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

    Derived Formsdoter or now rarely doater, nounWord Origin for dote C13: related to Middle Dutch doten to be silly, Norwegian dudra to shake Word Origin and History for dote v.

    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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