drone on

drone

2 [drohn]
verb (used without object), droned, droning.
1.
to make a dull, continued, low, monotonous sound; hum; buzz.
2.
to speak in a monotonous tone.
3.
to proceed in a dull, monotonous manner (usually followed by on ): The meeting droned on for hours.
verb (used with object), droned, droning.
4.
to say in a dull, monotonous tone.
noun
5.
Music.
a.
a continuous low tone produced by the bass pipes or bass strings of musical instruments.
b.
the pipes (especially of the bagpipe) or strings producing this tone.
c.
a bagpipe equipped with such pipes.
6.
a monotonous low tone; humming or buzzing sound.
7.
a person who speaks in a monotonous tone.

Origin:
1490–1500; see drone1 and compare Middle English droun to roar, Icelandic drynja to bellow, Gothic drunjus noise

droner, noun
droningly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
drone1 (drəʊn)
 
n
1.  a male bee in a colony of social bees, whose sole function is to mate with the queen
2.  (Brit) a person who lives off the work of others
3.  a pilotless radio-controlled aircraft
 
[Old English drān; related to Old High German treno drone, Gothic drunjus noise, Greek tenthrēnē wasp; see drone²]
 
'dronish1
 
adj

drone2 (drəʊn)
 
vb (when intr, often foll by on)
1.  (intr) to make a monotonous low dull sound; buzz or hum
2.  to utter (words) in a monotonous tone, esp to talk without stopping
 
n
3.  a monotonous low dull sound
4.  music
 a.  a sustained bass note or chord of unvarying pitch accompanying a melody
 b.  (as modifier): a drone bass
5.  music one of the single-reed pipes in a set of bagpipes, used for accompanying the melody played on the chanter
6.  a person who speaks in a low monotonous tone
 
[C16: related to drone1 and Middle Dutch drōnen, German dröhnen]
 
'droning2
 
adj
 
'droningly2
 
adv

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

drone
O.E. dran, dræn "male honeybee," from P.Gmc. *dran-, probably imitative; given a figurative sense of "idler, lazy worker" (male bees make no honey) 1520s. Meaning "pilotless aircraft" is from 1946. The verb in the sound sense is c.1500, apparently imitative. Related: Droned; droning.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
drone   (drōn)  Pronunciation Key 
A male bee, especially a honeybee whose only function is to fertilize the queen. Drones have no stingers, do no work, and do not produce honey.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

drone definition


In military usage, a pilotless aircraft used for reconnaissance and, more recently, for launching aerial attacks.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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