from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun An apartment in a house in which wines, liquors, and provisions are kept; a pantry.
  • noun In colleges, formerly, a room where liquors, fruits, and refreshments were kept for sale to the students.
  • Having the qualities (especially the consistence) or appearance of butter.
  • Apt to let fall anything one ought to hold, as a ball in the game of cricket; butter-fingered.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun An apartment in a house where butter, milk and other provisions are kept.
  • noun A room in some English colleges where liquors, fruit, and refreshments are kept for sale to the students.
  • noun A cellar in which butts of wine are kept.
  • noun a half door between the buttery or kitchen and the hall, in old mansions, over which provisions were passed.
  • adjective Having the qualities, consistence, or appearance, of butter.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun A room for keeping food or beverages; a storeroom.
  • noun UK A room in a university where snacks are sold.
  • adjective Made with or tasting of butter.
  • adjective Resembling butter in some way.

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

  • noun a teashop where students in British universities can purchase light meals
  • adjective unpleasantly and excessively suave or ingratiating in manner or speech
  • noun a small storeroom for storing foods or wines
  • adjective resembling or containing or spread with butter


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Old French boterie, from Late Latin botāria, from a variant form of butta ("cask, bottle"). The form was probably influenced by butter.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From butter +‎ -y.


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  • (It's not the same as haddock/cod baked in buttery milk, of course.)

    Shad Feast deliasherman 2010

  • The links have been dipped in buttery goodness and served to you on a platter that is made of smores.

    Archive 2007-11-01 2007

  • Daddy parked at one side in buttery sand that sucked at our tires

    HAROLD DERWIN BARNETT, 22 May 1925 - 16 October 2006 Maggie Jochild 2007

  • White House backs international trade ban on the highly prized-and "buttery" - Atlantic bluefin tuna.

    The Morning News 2010

  • It’s edible cold, but it’s best almost straight from the oven, in buttery chunks.

    Herb Damper « Barefoot in the Kitchen 2009

  • - Crema de Flor de Calabacita en las estilo de Pujo en D.F. (Squash Blossom soup as served at Pujol in D.F. It's served in a double old fashioned glass, the cream of squash blossom, impossibly rich and buttery is in the bottom of the glass, then topped with espuma (foam) of coconut milk and dusted with nutmeg.

    Mexican Soups-Your Favorites 2006

  • It seemed to me, I heard a movement, apparently from the buttery, which is to the left of the staircase.

    The House on the Borderland 2007

  • Dorothy Butteriedore was another, because the little girl had been left beside a small door called a buttery-door, through which people used to pass food from the kitchen.

    The Children's Book of London

  • The buttery was a big bare room on the shady side of the house, where great pans of milk stood on a long table.

    The Tale of Miss Kitty Cat Slumber-Town Tales Arthur Scott Bailey 1913

  • It seemed to me, I heard a movement, apparently from the buttery, which is to the left of the staircase.

    The House on the Borderland: Chapter 6 1908


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  • In castles, the room where wine was dispensed from barrels. Usually located between the hall and the kitchen. A store room for provisions.

    August 24, 2008

  • C_b, I'm guessing this comes from "butt" meaning cask. Do you know whether that's the case?

    August 24, 2008

  • I don't know for sure, but that's a fairly reasonable assumption. I'll see what I can find when I have more time.

    Edit: Here's what OED says about its etymology:

    "app. a. OF. boterie = bouteillerie (Godef.):late L. botria, f. bota, var. of butta cask, bottle; see BUTT n.5 The transition from the sense of ‘store-room for liquor’ to that of ‘store-room for provisions generally’ is in accordance with analogy, but may have been helped by association with BUTTER n.1."

    So you were right. :)

    August 25, 2008

  • Citation on craw.

    October 2, 2008