buttle

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English[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Back-formation from butler. Compare bottle (verb).

Verb[edit]

buttle (third-person singular simple present buttles, present participle buttling, simple past and past participle buttled)

  1. To serve as or perform the duties of a butler.
    • 1909, J. T. Grein, Sunday Times:
      ...even the stoic and impeccable maid of Miss Ethelwyn Arthur-Jones, who ‘buttled’ as well as the most time-honoured butler.
    • 1989, Benjamin Quarles, The Negro in the Civil War:
      Houses where Negroes buttled or cooked were marked for a visit.
    • 2000, Terry Pratchett, Carpe Jugulum:
      At times like this, he buttled when Spriggan the butler was not on duty, or if an extra hand was needed, he footed as well.
    • For more examples of usage of this term, see the citations page.

Usage notes[edit]

  • Because of its origins as a back-formation, buttle is considered nonstandard and uses are often jocular.