One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A small model of a human figure, typically one of a baby or girl, used as a child's toy.
puppet, marionette, figure, figurine, modelView synonyms
- ‘Baby dolls are the must-have for many little girls this Christmas.’
- ‘But he's no mere gatherer of porcelain dolls, ship-in-bottle models or hockey cards.’
- ‘There are so many dolls and soft toys in need of names.’
- ‘The main categories of toys exported are soft toys, dolls, plastic toys, educational toys, electronic and mechanical toys and games and puzzles.’
- ‘Their hair is cut so the boys look like porcupines and the girls like china dolls.’
- ‘For example, people dance, play musical instruments, act in plays, and play with dolls and model trains.’
- ‘Girls dressed the dolls and put them in prams, beds or cradles which were often handed down from one generation to the next.’
- ‘There are toys for the girls: soft dolls and wicker houses.’
- ‘Toy makers now have to compete with an explosion of video games, interactive dolls, action figures and gadgets that appear to come alive when hooked up to a television set.’
- ‘And do the pictures still show girls playing with dolls, boys with cars?’
- ‘Matchbox cars, dolls, and action figures all offer the opportunity for your child to learn visual discrimination.’
- ‘In the second session, children were exposed to art works such as art from waste, clay modelling, making Papier-mache dolls and pot painting.’
- ‘Our models are dolls, teddy bears and vintage mannequins poised for draping by fashion designers who play and train here.’
- ‘Research shows if a woman is given a baby or a doll to hold she is twice as likely to hold it on her left, rather than her right hand side.’
- ‘Toys, including dolls and teddy bears, were stored in boxes and there were several trophies, some crayons and a child's cough medicine on the mantelpiece nearby.’
- ‘As well, both the dolls and the human models are masked.’
- ‘My daughter would also have liked the children's room, full of dolls dressed in hand-embroidered baby gowns and Victorian toys.’
- ‘The kit consists of dolls, glove puppets and models, including a garage, designed to encourage interaction.’
- ‘A baby in not a doll, neither should it be treated as one.’
- ‘But here we are talking about things like boys playing with dolls and girls playing with trucks.’
- 1.1North American informal An attractive young woman.
- 1.2North American informal A generous or considerate person.‘would you be a doll and set the table?’
- ‘For seventeen years she had been nothing but a doll, following her father's orders.’
- ‘Karen was, and is, a doll and her friends were great.’
- ‘Oh, and be a doll, and leave me a review.’
verb[with object]doll someone up
Dress someone smartly and attractively.‘I got all dolled up for a party’
dress up, dress smartly, dress attractivelyView synonyms
- ‘Get on your fanciest dress and get all dolled up!’
- ‘She's the kind of girl that will always be beautiful whether dolled up in a dress or wearing a paper bag.’
- ‘Some people get all dolled up and that's fine but I rarely feel like dressing up.’
- ‘With Gladiator he's put Russell Crowe and Joaquin Phoenix on the map by dolling them up in pleated skirts and throwing them into a pit.’
- ‘The girls were up before me already getting all dolled up for the big day.’
- ‘I get dressed, get all dolled up in my black shirt and blue jeans.’
Mid 16th century (denoting a mistress): pet form of the given name Dorothy. The sense ‘small model of a human figure’ dates from the late 17th century.
A temporary barrier on a racecourse or gallop.
Place a barrier in front of (a jump or other part of the course that is to be omitted from a race)‘staff incorrectly dolled off a fence at the meeting’
- ‘The local stewards threw out the winner for going the wrong way round the final flight which had been dolled off.’
- ‘I couldn't use the one good rein, and it was dolled off on the inside all the way round at the fences.’
- ‘The last fence was dolled off.’
- ‘The incident followed on from a similar episode where the first five home were thrown out after taking the incorrect course after three fences in the home straight were dolled off due to the low sun.’
- ‘His vision obscured, only at the last minute did he spot that the fence had been dolled off because it was damaged.’
1940s: perhaps a variant of archaic dool ‘boundary marker’.
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