Simple Definition of teetotaler
: someone who never drinks alcohol
Full Definition of teetotaler
: one who practices or advocates teetotalism
Examples of teetotaler in a sentence
<in a quandary about what to serve for the wedding toast since his future in-laws are teetotalers>
Did You Know?
A person who abstains from alcohol might choose tea as his or her alternative beverage, but the word teetotaler has nothing to do with tea. More likely, the "tee" that begins the word teetotal is a reduplication of the letter "t" that begins total, emphasizing that one has pledged total abstinence. In the early 1800s, ''tee-total'' and ''tee-totally'' were used to intensify ''total'' and ''totally'' much the way we now might say, ''I'm tired with a capital T.'' ''I am now … wholly, solely, and teetotally absorbed in Wayne's business,'' wrote the folklorist Parson Weems in an 1807 letter. Teetotal and teetotaler first appeared with their current meanings in 1834, eight years after the formation of the American Temperance Society.
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