Definitions

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

  • n. A bomb, shell, or explosive round that fails to detonate.
  • n. Informal One that is disappointingly ineffective or unsuccessful.
  • n. Informal Clothing.
  • n. Informal Personal belongings.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A device or machine that is useless because it does not work properly or has failed to work, such as a bomb, or explosive projectile.
  • n. A lottery ticket that does not give a payout.
  • n. Clothes, now always used in plural form duds.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A coarse cloak or mantle.
  • n. A rag.
  • n. plural [Formerly also spelled dudes, as in Harman's “Caveat” (1567), where the word is erroneously set down as “pedlar's French”—that is, thieves' cant.] Clothes; especially, poor or ragged clothing; tatters: used in contempt.

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

  • adj. failing to detonate; especially not charged with an active explosive
  • n. someone who is unsuccessful
  • n. an event that fails badly or is totally ineffectual
  • n. an explosion that fails to occur

Etymologies

Middle English dudde, a cloak.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Ultimately from dudde ("ragged clothing or cloth"), of uncertain origin beyond that. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • The latest dud from the Maple Leafs came Tuesday night with a 6-3 home loss to the Thrashers.

    USATODAY.com

  • But could either of them rescue the evening that some political observers called a dud?

    CNN Transcript Aug 25, 2008

  • And, can Fred Thompson live up to his supporters 'expectations in the presidential race or is he what one top political analyst who's been there -- the White House, that is -- calls a dud?

    CNN Transcript Oct 9, 2007

  • Dreams are dud, which is why they stay dreams and never become reality.

    The Great California Game

  • “The ungainly chestnut Jake always referred to as the dud?”

    The Glory Game

  • Hurrdurr Today: RIM CEO calls dud BlackBerry Storm a "netbook"

    Megite Technology News: What's Happening Right Now

  • "The report is devoid of any credibility, a report which is an exercise in futility, a report which has been called a dud report and the Action Taken Report (ATR) itself indicates it is an unimplementable report," Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley said.

    Daily News & Analysis

  • "Not for nothing is this government increasingly being known as the dud Rudd government."

    Latest News - Yahoo!7 News

  • Illinois doesn't seem to be any way to recall a dud gov.

    Latest Articles

  • The '78 B:G is a true "dud" in every sense of the word.

    They have got to be frakking kidding!

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