\ ˈdaft How to pronounce daft (audio) also ˈdäft \

Definition of daft

1 chiefly British, informal : silly, foolish Don't do anything daft.
2 chiefly British, informal : mad, insane … he looks at me as if I were daft.— Johanna McGeary
3 Scotland : frivolously merry

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Other Words from daft

daftly adverb
daftness \ ˈdaf(t)-​nəs How to pronounce daftness (audio) \ noun

Examples of daft in a Sentence

Your idea seems a bit daft to me. She looked at us as if we'd gone daft.
Recent Examples on the Web Almost everyone thinks this is daft but won’t say so, because the trans issue is the most pressing social-justice matter of the day. James Lileks, National Review, "President Judge Judy," 25 July 2019 Judging a stock by its name may not be a daft strategy after all. The Economist, "WOOF, CAKE, BOOM: stocks with catchy tickers beat the market," 7 Oct. 2019 Matthew finds this all exciting and dangerous and daft. BostonGlobe.com, "Caleb Crain’s ‘Overthrow’ a political thriller with a radical spirit," 22 Aug. 2019 Those daft suggestions got the cogs turning at 90min towers, wondering what else could, and perhaps should, be trademarked. SI.com, "10 Iconic Football Catchphrases That Could Be Trademarked," 31 July 2019 That the Catholic Church should have acted as one of the brakes on that daft mysticism will perhaps perplex the Bill Mahers of the world, who understand so little about it. Kevin D. Williamson, National Review, "A Kind of Experiment, Separating Gender and Sex: Why the Church Says No," 11 June 2019 Bye-ku to Another Trump Incompetence What could be dafterThan to dream that Don’d draft a Deal after NAFTA? James Freeman, WSJ, "Look Who’s Supporting the NRA against Cuomo," 27 Aug. 2018 The cracking of the mystery, at the conclusion of Gemini, is daft and unsatisfying, but no matter. Mike Miller, PEOPLE.com, "Lola Kirke Blasts Critic Who Said She Had 'Haircut from Hell' for 'Outdated' Views on Women," 18 Apr. 2018 Williams isn’t spacey or unfocused, daft or delusional. Bryce Miller, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Ricky Williams defies 'pothead' label to reinvent his cannabis-selling himself," 20 Mar. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'daft.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of daft

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for daft

Middle English daffte, daft, defte "well-mannered, gentle, dull, foolish," going back to Old English gedæfte "gentle, mild, meek," adjective derivative of a Germanic base *daƀ- "becoming, fit" (whence also Old English gedafen "appropriate, fitting," Gothic gadaban "to happen, be suitable," with lengthened grade Old English gedēfe "fitting, worthy, quiet, tranquil," Middle Dutch onghedoef "wild, rough," Gothic gadob ist "it is fitting"), going back to dialectal Indo-European *dhabh- or *dhobh-, whence also Old Church Slavic podobati "to become, be fitting," dobrŭ "good, pleasant," Serbian/Croatian/Bosnian dôba, dȍba "time, season," Lithuanian dabà "nature, character," dabnùs "well-dressed, elegant"

Note: The sense progression from Germanic to Modern English is apparently "fit, becoming" to "well-mannered, modest" to "dull, stupid" to "foolish, irrational." See also deft.

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Time Traveler for daft

Time Traveler

The first known use of daft was in the 14th century

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Last Updated

20 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Daft.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/daftly. Accessed 19 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for daft

How to pronounce daft (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of daft

British, informal
: strange often in a way that is funny
: crazy or foolish
\ ˈdaft How to pronounce daft (audio) \
dafter; daftest

Kids Definition of daft

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More from Merriam-Webster on daft

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for daft

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with daft

Spanish Central: Translation of daft

Nglish: Translation of daft for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of daft for Arabic Speakers

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