[dawnt, dahnt]
verb (used with object)
to overcome with fear; intimidate: to daunt one's adversaries.
to lessen the courage of; dishearten: Don't be daunted by the amount of work still to be done.

1250–1300; Middle English da(u)nten < Anglo-French da(u)nter, Old French danter, alteration of donter (probably by influence of dangier power, authority; see danger) < Latin domitāre to tame, derivative of domitus, past participle of domāre to tame

dauntingly, adverb
dauntingness, noun
undaunting, adjective

1. overawe, subdue, dismay, frighten. 2. discourage, dispirit.

2. encourage.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
daunt (dɔːnt)
1.  to intimidate
2.  to dishearten
[C13: from Old French danter, changed from donter to conquer, from Latin domitāre to tame]

daunting (ˈdɔːntɪŋ)
causing fear or discouragement; intimidating

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin & History

c.1300, from O.Fr. danter, var. of donter, from L. domitare, freq. of domare "to tame" (see tame). Originally "to vanquish;" sense of "to intimidate" is from late 15c.

c.1300, pp. adj. from daunt (q.v.).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
Achieving free trade across the globe is a daunting task.
I'm afraid this game is can be very daunting for newcomers.
Most daunting is the sheer scale of the operation.
For many people, the idea of having to work a room and chat up strangers is
  more daunting than holiday shopping.
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