Meaning of DOT in English


I. ˈdät, usu -äd.+V noun

( -s )

Etymology: from (assumed) Middle English, from Old English dott head of a boil; akin to Old High German tutta nipple, Dutch dot knot, tuft, Norwegian dot lump, small knot, Old English dyttan to stop up

1. : a minute particle of a substance or liquid or a spot of color visible on a surface

sori appear as dots on a fertile fern frond

the telltale dots of measles

watching the wagon as it grew smaller and smaller until it was only a dot on the horizon — O.E.Rölvaag

islands show as mere dots on the ocean

2. : a small round mark made on a surface with or as if with a pointed instrument

the dot on the chart represents the ship's position

put a dot before the name of each as he pays

a. : such a mark written or printed as a sign or part of a sign of orthography or punctuation: as

(1) : period

a colon consists of one dot on the base line with another directly above

a row of printed dots denoting the omission of words

W.A.C. written with dots or without

(2) : the topmost element of a lower-case letter i or j

(3) : a centered period as a divider of syllables

b. : such a mark as an integral part of certain letters (as ṁ in Sanskrit) in various forms of the Roman alphabet or in phonetics used above, below, or after a symbol with any of various values


(1) : decimal point

(2) : a sign of multiplication

d. : one of the points used in braille or other raised-point system of writing for the blind

e. in music notation

(1) : a point placed immediately after a note or rest indicating augmentation of its time value by one half

(2) : a point placed over a note indicating a moderate staccato — compare dash 3d

f. : one of the spots constituting the printing surface of a halftone

g. logic

(1) : a sign for “and” — compare conjunction

(2) : a sign used to indicate the beginning or end of a group of statements belonging together

3. : something very small ; especially : a very small portion or specimen

a dot of a child

4. : a precise point in time or space ; especially : a moment exactly appointed

arriving and departing on the dot

correct to a dot


a. : a striking of a pointed object or the sound of its striking on a hard surface

we knew him far off by the dot of his crutch

b. : a short click on a telegraph sounder forming a letter or part of a letter (as in the Morse code) — compare dash 8a

c. : a flash of a beam from a momentary opening of the shutter of a signal light representing a letter or part of a letter in a communication system (as the Morse code) — compare dash 8c

d. : a wave of a flag through an arc of 90 degrees to the right from vertical as an element of a code alphabet in flag signaling — compare wigwag

6. : a small circle of solid color used as a design motif

a broadcloth print with big coin dots

— compare polka dot

- in the year dot

- off one's dot

II. verb

( dotted ; dotted ; dotting ; dots )

transitive verb


a. : to mark with a dot

a dotted 32d note

b. : to put a dot over (a letter i or j )

c. : jot — used with down

dot down these notes


a. : to mark or diversify with numerous dots or objects scattered at random : intersperse

one of those enigmas that dot the literary landscape in every period — J.G.Keller

a curious type of formal English dotted with sudden colloquialisms — J.J.Espey

dotted across the country are pressure groups which complain loudly that education has gotten away from the fundamentals — E.O.Melby

pictures of animals which are dotted about in the text of the bestiaries — O.Elfrida Saunders


(1) : to cause a scattering of marks resembling dots to appear on

a rising southeast wind that dotted the lake with whitecaps — Joseph Millard

(2) : to make a dot or dots upon

dotted the canvas with infinitely small specks of paint

3. cookery : to dab here and there with small bits of a soft substance (as butter) : scatter small bits of an ingredient over

4. slang Britain : hit

intransitive verb

: to make a dot

a pen point that dots without blotting

- dot and carry one

- dot and go one

- dot the i

III. ˈdä]t, ˈdȯ], usu ]d.+V\ noun

( -s )

Etymology: French, from Latin dot-, dos dowry — more at dower

: a woman's marriage portion

Webster's New International English Dictionary.      Новый международный словарь английского языка Webster.