1 of 2

verb (1)

dozed; dozing

intransitive verb

: to sleep lightly
: to fall into a light sleep
usually used with off
: to be in a dull or stupefied condition

transitive verb

: to pass (time) drowsily
doze noun


2 of 2

verb (2)

dozed; dozing

Examples of doze in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
In their nest overhead, Yaren and Nazli dozed, groomed themselves and filled the air with the percussive clacking of their beaks. Safak Timur Ivor Prickett, New York Times, 30 Mar. 2024 People who had been dozing in their wheelchairs woke up and started singing along. Linda McIntosh, San Diego Union-Tribune, 16 Feb. 2024 Her other feline, Mr. Rose, was dozing in the back of the apartment. Naomi Fry, The New Yorker, 29 Jan. 2024 Passing scientists captured the dozing animal — and discovered a new species. Aspen Pflughoeft, Miami Herald, 2 Feb. 2024 On the campaign train to Pennsylvania, while Bogart dozed, Bacall and Stevenson huddled in close conversation. Maureen Lee Lenker,, 7 July 2023 In one, Amora dozed peacefully while swaddled in a brown blanket on top of a nest of other brown-toned fabrics. Charna Flam, Peoplemag, 23 Jan. 2024 The lap belts favored in Europe may help infants from slipping out of a dozing parent’s grasp, but research from RMIT University in Australia in 2015 showed downsides. Nicole Kobie, WIRED, 12 Jan. 2024 All that’s missing are the rowdy A’s fans and people dozing ’til the end of the line. Kate Bradshaw, The Mercury News, 2 Jan. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'doze.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Verb (1)

perhaps of Scandinavian origin; akin to Old Norse dūsa to doze

Verb (2)

probably back-formation from dozer (bulldozer)

First Known Use

Verb (1)

1677, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1a

Verb (2)

1945, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of doze was in 1677

Dictionary Entries Near doze

Cite this Entry

“Doze.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


dozed; dozing
: to sleep lightly
doze noun
dozer noun

More from Merriam-Webster on doze

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!