Word of The Day – Derring-do

Word of the Day : January 21, 2022


noun dair-ing-DOO

What It Means

Derring-do refers to daring action that requires bravery and courage.

// In a spectacular feat of derring-do, the stuntman leaped from the overpass and landed on top of the train as it passed below.

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DERRING – Do in Context

“With more than 80 pieces of bronze, steel, and iron on display [at The Age of Armor exhibit], it’s impossible not to think of stories of gallant knights, courtly love, and brave acts of derring-do.” — Jason Webber, The Toledo (Ohio) Blade, 7 Nov. 2021

Did You Know?

Derring-do is a quirky holdover from Middle English that came to occupy its present place in the language by a series of mistakes and misunderstandings. In Middle English, dorring don meant simply “daring to do.” The phrase was misprinted as derrynge do in a 15th-century work by poet John Lydgate, and Edmund Spenser took it up from there. (A glossary to Spenser’s work defined it as “manhood and chevalrie.”) Literary author Sir Walter Scott and others brought the noun into modern use.