Word of the Day

dauntless

audio pronunciation
May 06, 2015
adjective
\DAWNT-lus\
Definition
: resolute especially in the face of danger or difficulty : fearless, undaunted
Examples
The rescuers were dauntless, battling cold, wind, and fatigue to reach the injured mountain climbers.

"In recent years Scandinavian central bankers have shown the same dauntless appetite for exploration that once saw Nordic ships fan out across the globe." — Financial Times, April 9, 2015
Subscribe
Get the Word of the Day direct to your inbox — subscribe today!
Did You Know?
The history of the world is peopled with dauntless men and women who refused to be subdued or "tamed" by fear. The word dauntless can be traced back to Latin domare, meaning "to tame" or "to subdue." When our verb daunt (a domare descendant borrowed by way of Anglo-French) was first used in the 14th century, it shared these meanings. The now-obsolete "tame" sense referred to the taming or breaking of wild animals, particularly horses: an undaunted horse was an unbroken horse. Not until the late 16th century did we use undaunted with the meaning "undiscouraged and courageously resolute" to describe people. By then, such lionhearted souls could also be described as undauntable, and finally, in Henry VI, Part 3, Shakespeare gave us dauntless.

Name That Antonym: Fill in the blanks to create an antonym of dauntless: pu _ il _ _ ni _ o _ _. The answer is …
More Words of the Day
Visit our archives to see previous selections.
Podcast
Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!
How to use a word that (literally) drives some people nuts.
Test your vocab with our fun, fast game
Ailurophobia, and 9 other unusual fears