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[don-ish] /ˈdɒn ɪʃ/
resembling or characteristic of a university don; bookish; pedantic.
Origin of donnish
1825-35; don1 + -ish1
Related forms
donnishly, adverb
donnishness, noun
donnism, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for donnish
  • And such is his air of donnish authority that not even baldness has dared to challenge him publicly.
  • The donnish barb was understandable, but quite wrong.
  • His style is donnish-tweed jacket, rumpled trousers, shock of gray hair-but his aura is leonine.
  • His is the voice of authority, of donnish pronouncement.
  • Not to put too fine a point on it, they contained some good examples of donnish wit.
British Dictionary definitions for donnish


of or resembling a university don
Derived Forms
donnishly, adverb
donnishness, noun
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 donnish

1835, from don (n.) in the university sense + -ish. Related: Donnishness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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