Trend Watch

Kim Jong Un: Trump a 'Dotard'

"A state or period of senile decay marked by decline of mental poise"


Dotard rose dramatically in lookups on September 21st, 2017, after Kim Jong Un referred to Donald Trump by this uncomplimentary term.

alt-59c448f88ea38

'Dotage' is "a state or period of senile decay marked by decline of mental poise and alertness"

"I am now thinking hard about what response he could have expected when he allowed such eccentric words to trip off his tongue," Kim said in a statement released by the state Korean Central News Agency, which also published a photo of the North Korean leader sitting at his desk. "I will surely and definitely tame the mentally deranged U.S. dotard with fire."
— David Nakamura and Anne Gearan, The Washington Post, 21 Sept. 2017

The word as used today commonly means "a person in his or her dotage" (dotage is "a state or period of senile decay marked by decline of mental poise and alertness"). Dotard, which comes from the Middle English word doten (meaning "to dote"), initially had the meaning of "imbecile" when it began being used in the 14th century.

Rot in thy grave, thou dotard, I defie thee. 
Curst be our day of marriage: shall I nurse 
And play the mother to anothers brat?
— Thomas Randolph, The Jealous Lovers. A Comedy, 1632



Comments

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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