\ ˈmät How to pronounce motte (audio) \

Definition of motte

: mound, hill especially : a hill serving as a site for a Norman castle in Britain

Examples of motte in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Here, instead, were the motte-and-bailey dreams of Brexit, the blood and soil nationalism of soon-to-be President Trump and the majoritarian rage scorching through Indian democracy. Ishaan Tharoor, Washington Post, 3 Nov. 2020 Her opportunistic motte-and-bailey act on what is supposedly her signature plan suggests not. Isaac Schorr, National Review, 23 Oct. 2020 Here, the motte: The acutely suicidal, the delusional, the manic-depressives, and other students with serious mental illnesses should be allowed to miss school to attend to symptoms that arise from their relative conditions. John Hirschauer, National Review, 24 July 2019

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

First Known Use of motte

1884, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for motte

French, from Old French mote, motte

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Dictionary Entries Near motte



motte and bailey

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Cite this Entry

“Motte.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 13 Aug. 2022.

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