One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1with object To adorn, beautify; to titivate. Chiefly refl. (used chiefly of men). Formerly also with †it, with reflexive meaning. Now historical.
2no object To adorn or beautify oneself; to primp. Used chiefly of men.
Early 17th century; earliest use found in Randle Cotgrave (fl. 1587–?1630), lexicographer. From French adoniser from Adonis, the name of Adonis, also as noun in sense ‘handsome young man’ + -iser.
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