Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • transitive v. To do wrongly or awkwardly; botch.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To do evil.
  • v. To do (something) incorrectly or improperly.
  • v. To do harm to; to injure, mistreat.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • intransitive v. To do wrong; to commit a fault.
  • transitive v. To do wrongly.
  • transitive v. To do wrong to; to illtreat.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To do wrong to; treat badly.
  • To do or perform amiss.
  • To act amiss; err in action or conduct.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. do wrongly or improperly

Etymologies

From Middle English misdon, from Old English misdōn ("to do evil, transgress, do amiss, err"), from Proto-Germanic *missadōnan (“to do wrongly”), from *missa- (“mis-”), *dōnan (“to do”), corresponding to mis- +‎ do. Cognate with Old Frisian misdūa ("to misdo"), Dutch misdoen ("to offend, do wrongly"), Middle Low German misdōn ("to misdo"), Middle High German missetuon ("to transgress, offend, blame"). More at mis-, do. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Then the king avaled his visor with a meek and noble countenance, and said, Madam, there shall none of my subjects misdo you nor your maidens, nor to none that to you belong, but the duke shall abide my judgment.

    Le Morte Darthur: Sir Thomas Malory's Book of King Arthur and of his Noble Knights of the Round Table, Volume 1

  • And the virgin commanded that he should not misdo him, but let him go, and anon he was converted, and ran through the city, and began to cry that Daria was a goddess.

    The Golden Legend, vol. 6

  • What mighty men misdo, they can amend -- these are the fresh and original types on which our little poet is compelled to fall back for support and illustration to a scene so full of terrible suggestion and pathetic possibility.

    A Study of Shakespeare

  • "Dame Hersent," said the lady, "thou wert best let such words be; for I have no desire to misdo of my body, of no such blood am I come."

    Old French Romances

  • I had said to her, perhaps that very day, 'I know not whether this book is worth anything, nor what the world will do with it, or misdo, or entirely forbear to do (as is likeliest), but this I could tell the world: You have not had for a hundred years any book that came more direct and flamingly sincere from the heart of a living man; do with it what you like, you -----!'

    Letters and Memorials of Jane Welsh Carlyle

  • "Sir," saith Lucan, "Lancelot well knoweth that and you had taken no counsel but your own, he would not have been thus entreated, and I dare well say that never so long as he liveth will he misdo in aught towards you, for he hath in him much valour and loyalty, as many a time have you had good cause to know.

    The High History of the Holy Graal

  • "Sir," saith Lancelot, "Your amends love I much, and your love more than of any other; but never, please God, will I misdo you for aught that you may have done to me, for it is well known that I have not been in prison for no treason I have done, nor for no folly, but only for that it was your will.

    The High History of the Holy Graal

  • "Forsooth," said Sir Robin, "my wife is not come of such blood as that she shall misdo against me, and I may not believe in it nowise:

    Old French Romances

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