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[daw] /dɔ/
Obsolete. simpleton; fool.
Origin of daw
late Middle English
1400-50; late Middle English dawe; compare Old High German taha Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for daws
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • He had a warm heart, although he did not wear it on his sleeve for daws to peck at.

  • We do not “wear our hearts” on our sleeve “for daws to peck at!”

    She and I, Volume 2 John Conroy Hutcheson
  • This may be seen in daws, choughs, pipits, and many other species.

    Birds and Man W. H. Hudson
  • How they would chatter over it like a pair of daws in the same nest.

    Patsy S. R. Crockett
  • Another very unlikely spot is made use of by daws as a place to breed in, and that is Stonehenge.

  • "But not for daws to peck at—that is the heart," laughed Mr. Ayrton.

    Phyllis of Philistia Frank Frankfort Moore
  • The Ebor daws are but the first of a succession of colonies extending along the side of the Cheddar valley.

    Birds and Man W. H. Hudson
  • "Keep clear of the daws, my son, and it does no harm," responded the Major.

    The Battle Ground Ellen Glasgow
  • Every fellow that was any good was out of it, and daws got the scholarship.

    A Country Gentleman and his Family Mrs. (Margaret) Oliphant
British Dictionary definitions for daws


an archaic, dialect, or poetic name for a jackdaw
Word Origin
C15: related to Old High German taha
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for daws



early 15c., from Proto-Germanic *dakhwo (cf. Old High German taha, German Dohle), perhaps imitative of bird's cry. Medieval Latin tacula, Italian taccola are said to be Germanic loan words.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Related Abbreviations for daws


defense automated warning system


dispense as written
The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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