Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • transitive verb To put on (clothing).
  • transitive verb To assume or take on.
  • noun Used as a courtesy title before the name of a man in a Spanish-speaking area.
  • noun A head, tutor, or fellow at a college of Oxford or Cambridge.
  • noun A college or university professor.
  • noun The leader of an organized-crime family.
  • noun Archaic An important personage.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun [capitalized] A title in Spain and Italy prefixed to a man's Christian name, like Sir in Great Britain.
  • noun A gentleman; a man bearing the title of or addressed as “Don.”
  • noun Any person of high importance or leading position: applied ironically to one giving himself airs of importance.
  • noun In Great Britain, a fellow of a college, or any college authority.
  • noun In sea-fishing, a buoy used to mark a fishing-ground.
  • To put on; invest with.

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

  • transitive verb To put on; to dress in; to invest one's self with.
  • noun Sir; Mr; Signior; -- a title in Spain, formerly given to noblemen and gentlemen only, but now common to all classes.
  • noun Univ. Cant A grand personage, or one making pretension to consequence; especially, the head of a college, or one of the fellows at the English universities.

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

  • noun A university professor, particularly one at Oxford or Cambridge.
  • noun A mafia boss.
  • verb clothing to put on, to dress in

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

  • noun Celtic goddess; mother of Gwydion and Arianrhod; corresponds to Irish Danu
  • noun a Spanish courtesy title or form of address for men that is prefixed to the forename
  • noun a Spanish gentleman or nobleman
  • noun a European river in southwestern Russia; flows into the Sea of Azov
  • noun the head of an organized crime family
  • verb put clothing on one's body
  • noun teacher at a university or college (especially at Cambridge or Oxford)

Etymologies

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

[Middle English, contraction of do on, to put on; see do.]

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

[Spanish dialectal and Italian, both from Latin dominus, lord; see dem- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Latin dominus, "lord", "head of household", akin to Spanish don and Italian dom; from domus, "house", + diminutive suffix -inus. Compare dominie.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

A contraction of Middle English do on. Compare also doff.

Examples

  • Mr. Bush's low approval ratings at the end of his term don't help, said Leonard Pfeiffer IV, a Washington recruiter for nonprofits.

    Jobs Still Elude Some Bush Ex-Officials

  • The title don't make since to me -- it don't match the cake -- something is wrong here.

    By Show of Hands, Who Thinks We Should Call Child Protective Services?

  • Sometimes, the term don-spyi is used for the combination of an audio and a meaning/object category.

    The Distinction between Self-sufficiently Knowable and Imputedly Knowable Phenomena

  • Chelsea's 12 goals in their last two Premier League games and theirstrong challenge for the title don't seem to have inspired the StamfordBridge faithful.

    Football.co.uk news feed

  • It's a handle; it doesn't mean the people who use the term don't see the moral difference between mobsters who commit heinous crimes and the lawyers who defend them.

    FrontPage Magazine

  • It's seems that the vast majority of songs with the word "woman" in the title don't begin with that word.

    slacktivist

  • Gingrich's attempt to hold Muslims collectively accountable for the actions of a relative handful of extremists doesn't simply reinforce al-Qaeda's narrative that America is at war with Islam as a whole; it skirts dangerously close to accepting the terrorist-friendly premise that "innocents" as we generally understand the term don't actually exist.

    News & Politics

  • Chelsea's 12 goals in their last two Premier League games and theirstrong challenge for the title don't seem to have inspired the StamfordBridge faithful.

    Football.co.uk news feed

  • Chelsea's 12 goals in their last two Premier League games and theirstrong challenge for the title don't seem to have inspired the StamfordBridge faithful.

    Football.co.uk news feed

  • Just cause they took the numberings out in the title don't mean we get to # them however we want to.

    Original Signal - Transmitting Digg

Comments

New comments are temporarily disabled while we update our database.

  • A contraction of "do on". Contrast with doff.

    January 5, 2007

  • Binky was over ninety and was the widow of "a Peterhouse fellow," a philosophy don (despite living in Cambridge for fourteen years, Jackson still though of the mafia when he heard that word).
    Kate Atkinson, Case Histories (New York: Little Brown & Co., 2004), p. 82.

    May 30, 2016