: a long loose hooded cloak usually worn with a half mask as a masquerade costume
: a half mask worn over the eyes with a masquerade costume
: a person wearing a domino
: a flat rectangular block (as of wood or plastic) whose face is divided into two equal parts that are blank or bear usually from one to six dots arranged as on dice faces
dominoes or dominos plural in form but usually singular in construction: any of several games played with a set of usually 28 dominoes
: a member of a group (as of nations) expected to behave in accordance with the domino theory
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The History of Domino
The origin of dominoes is rather obscure, and that is as true of the word as it is of the game. Both appeared in France shortly after 1750. In both English and French, domino earlier denoted a long hooded cloak worn together with a mask during carnival season or at a masquerade. It is an even earlier sense, however, that may link the garment with the playing piece. In French, domino originally referred to a cape worn by a priest over his surplice. Domino pieces were once made with ebony blacks and ivory faces, and it has been suggested that the playing piece brought to mind the priest’s black domino contrasting with the white surplice.
Examples of domino in a Sentence
Dominoes is one of my favorite games.
Recent Examples on the WebSoftware that mimics a bygone way of setting up project dominoes is the source of our workplace frustration and the beginning of do-it-all solutions that end up simply making more work.—WIRED, 1 Oct. 2023 No Time to Die — in a never-ending game of dominoes.—Pamela McClintock, The Hollywood Reporter, 9 Nov. 2023 Once the action moves to Austin, the author hilariously captures the unbridled absurdity that is a session of the Texas Legislature: drinking and dominoes, pig hunts, big checks from lobbyists and — occasionally — lawmaking.—Shawna Seed, Dallas News, 12 Sep. 2023 The dominos started falling Friday as Sony made a number of changes to its theatrical calendar amid the actors and writers strikes, including taking Spider-Man: Beyond the Spider-Verse off its spring 2024 date.—Pamela McClintock, The Hollywood Reporter, 28 July 2023 With Riddick’s domino fallen, Auburn expects more coming.—Matt Cohen | McOhen@al.com, al, 26 July 2023 Many more are stacked like dominoes in the corners.—Jay Cheshes, Smithsonian Magazine, 25 Oct. 2023 More psychics need to be setting up the dominoes for Angela Bassett movies.—Jason P. Frank, Vulture, 16 Oct. 2023 Then, maybe just maybe, the Los Angeles schools would have stayed loyal, Oregon and Washington wouldn’t have needed to seek self-preservation in the midwest, and the realignment dominoes wouldn’t have followed.—Joe Freeman, oregonlive, 13 Sep. 2023 See More
These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'domino.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.
French, probably from Latin (in the ritual formula benedicamus Domino let us bless the Lord)